Stephen King Almost Co-Wrote Poltergeist With Steven Spielberg



Yesterday, EW reported that Steven Spielberg has been in possession of Stephen King and Peter Straub’s fantasy epic, The Talisman, since the 1980s and is looking to turn the 921-page novel into a full-length feature at some point. As such, while Spielberg and King have never officially partnered on a project, their first collaboration does appear to be imminent – and fans are understandably very excited.

What most aren’t aware of, however, is how close the “master of horror” and Spielberg once came to working together. Before its release in 1982, Spielberg reached out to King, wanting the prolific author to co-write the screenplay for Poltergeist with him. In the same EW interview, King revealed that the three-time Oscar winner had attempted to contact him. Unfortunately, though, he was unable to do so “because it was before the internet and we had a communication breakdown.”

Spielberg’s take on the mishap appears to corroborate King’s testimony, too, with the director saying, “Yeah, I wanted him to help me out with the script and sort of write it with me, but he was unavailable.” The reason why King never got the message? “I was on a ship going across the Atlantic to England,” said the author.


Spielberg, who also has a producing credit on Poltergeist, doesn’t dabble in horror as much as we’d like him to, but perhaps with the emergence of this story and the possible upcoming adaptation of The Talisman, he’ll consider producing more frightening flicks in the future? Time will tell, but if one thing’s for certain, it’s that audiences certainly won’t be short on Stephen King adaptations anytime soon.

Over the past month, King has seen his 862-page novel The Stand picked up by CBS All Access, Cedar Park Entertainment snagged his narrative poem The Bone Church, and Dennis Widmyer and Kevin Kolsch’s remake of Pet Sematary set a production start date. Suffice it to say, it’s been a profitable four weeks for King and now’s a very good time to be a fan of the author’s work.

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