Add Big Driver, a short story in Stephen King’s 2010 collection Full Dark, No Stars, to the huge list of works by the living literary legend that are in the midst of being adapted to the screen. Lifetime just green-lit a television movie based on the story and has set A History of Violence actress Maria Bello to star.
Big Driver will center on a successful mystery novelist (Bello) who takes an ostensible shortcut on her way home from an engagement at a Chicopee, Massachusetts, library and falls into a trap set by a sinister trucker, who proceeds to brutally rape her and leave her for dead. After recovering from her injuries, the novelist uses the detective skills she picked up from writing mystery novels to track down and take revenge on the trucker and his accomplices.
It’s pretty disturbing material for a TV movie, and King’s short story was sickeningly graphic, so perhaps Lifetime will tone it down a bit, if just so it doesn’t have to carry a TV-MA rating. As of right now, the only reason I’d watch Big Driver is Bello. She’s a supremely talented actress, and I’ll be interested to see how she does in the role of a victim-turned-vigilante. The story, though powerful, wasn’t one of King’s best, but it’s still filled with some extremely creepy and dramatic moments befitting a work from the Master of Horror.
Richard Christian Matheson, who previously penned Happy Face Killer for Lifetime and also wrote an episode of the 2006 miniseries Nightmares & Dreamscapes: From the Stories of Stephen King will be scribing the adaptation. Meanwhile, Mikael Salomon, who sat behind the camera on A&E’s Coma miniseries and coincidentally also helmed episodes of Nightmares & Dreamscapes (though not with Matheson), has been set to direct. Olympia Dukakis, Joan Jett and Will Harris will co-star.
Production on Big Driver will kick off this summer in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with Lifetime eying a fall premiere date.