Director Mark (The Night Flier) Pavia discusses first details of upcoming Stephen King anthology project

While we were fortunate to get two recent efforts in the form of Trick R’ Treat and Chillerama, it seems horror anthologies are few and far between, even though genre fans are always wondering why we don’t see more of them.  Then, these past few weeks, I started hearing some rumors floating around and noticed a few consecutive hints on director Mark Pavia’s Facebook page.  Having covered Mark’s early work and Hollywood struggles in a previous interview, Icons decided to investigate, and it turns out the clues we were given were right on the money.  Pavia is diving back into the well of Stephen King for an upcoming project!   “It’s a Stephen King anthology film (as yet untitled)”, Pavia explains.  “One that consists of only horror stories and one that is incredibly dark and endlessly atmospheric.  I want to make a film that represents exactly what you think of when you hear the name “Stephen King” — a celebration of the man and what he does best, which is scaring the living hell out of all of us!  But also stories that are rich in character and that have an emotional weight to them, which, of course, is what he’s all about.  That’s what sets him apart from everyone else.  It will be the first Stephen King anthology film in 25 years.”

While having kept King’s acquaintance over the years (they ended up writing a sequel to The Night Flier together titled The Night Flier: Fear of Flying in 2005), this is the first time Pavia’s pursued adapting a major King-related project since his debut film.  While the notion of doing a King anthology film has been on Pavia’s mind for some time now, he only recently reached out to the horror icon for the necessary permission to develop/set up the project:  “Steve agreed right away, which made me very happy.  I have to say, it feels like going home.  He has been a huge part of my life since discovering me right out of film school and then hiring me (along with Richard Rubinstein) to write and direct THE NIGHT FLIER, which was an amazing experience.  He has always been incredibly supportive of me for many years now, which naturally, I’m very grateful for.  I love and respect Steve King, as a friend and as an artist, and I’m going to do him right.”

What kind of stories, and which particular ones, will be featured in the anthology?  While he didn’t want to officially announce them yet (though curious fans can scour Pavia’s Facebook posts for hints of the chosen tales), he did mention it’s the film’s intention to showcase all the distinct styles of King’s writing in one project.  “Steve chose two of the stories and I chose two — the selection a perfect mixture of classic and contemporary King, a little bit of something for his oldest and newest fans alike.  It will be a true representation of his different personas, his varied styles and voices throughout the years.  Everything from the horror showman at his pulpiest to his most introverted and introspective character pieces, which can also be his most frightening.  Every single aspect of his personality will be represented, which as a filmmaker makes me extremely excited.  Not only will the film showcase Stephen King’s many different sides, it will also showcase mine as well.” 

Though at the core of it, Pavia says the key element in selection was always the fear factor.  “From the outset, I had just one criteria: all the stories chosen had to be incredibly frightening and also have a supernatural bent to them, and he agreed with me.  This is a go for the gut horror show, make no mistake about that, and I can’t wait to bring it to life for his countless fans around the world.  Rest assured, I’m going to give all Stephen King fans what they want and what they deserve.”

Icons of Fright will keep you posted with new and official details, including Pavia’s unique and clever element that will serve as the film’s wraparound.  In time…

-ADAM BARNICK