We last saw Lucy Liu in Netflix’s Death to 2021 and in one of her next projects, death is precisely what Liu’s character is going to be dealing with. That shouldn’t be much of a surprise considering the guy who wrote the story Liu’s next project is based upon. Liu has been cast as the lead of Later, an upcoming miniseries based on the novel of the same name by the master of horror, Stephen King.
Deadline broke the news today, with Lucy Liu confirmed as the lead and, so far, the only confirmed member of the cast. The rights to adapt Later were acquired by Blumhouse Television, who is already working on an adaptation of the King short story Mr. Harrigan’s Phone starring Donald Sutherland and Jaeden Martell — the latter of whom starred as the young Bill Denbrough in director Andy Muschietti’s adaptations of King’s It. The outlet reports the pilot script for Later was written by Raelle Tucker. As a writer and producer on series like Supernatural and True Blood, Tucker has plenty of experience with horror, though Later — if it’s anything like the source material — won’t strictly belong to the horror genre.
Released last March, Later is the third novel Stephen King has published through Hard Case Crime, an imprint of hardboiled crime novels. Still, Later‘s premise does rely heavily on the supernatural, and even has echoes of The Shining. Judging by Deadline’s description, Lucy Liu’s miniseries will stay fairly close to the source material. Later‘s lead is Tia, a single mother and the owner of a literary agency that’s about to go under because her biggest client just died with his final novel unfinished. Like Danny Torrance of The Shining, Tia’s son Jamie can speak to the dead, who are compelled to answer every question he asks. Jamie uses his ability to help his mother and get all the details he needs about the aborted novel from the spirit of the dead writer so Tia can finish it. But after Tia’s girlfriend finds out what Jamie is capable of, things get a lot more complicated.
Ironically considering the title, Later could potentially be one of the next screen projects we see Lucy Liu appear in. While there’s no firm release date yet for Later, the only project Liu is confirmed to be a part of that we have a firm premiere date for is Shazam! Fury of the Gods, which currently has a release date of June 2, 2023. Last April it was confirmed that Lucy Liu will appear in the sequel to Shazam! as one of the villains — the nymph Kalypso from Greco-Roman mythology. Pirates of the Caribbean fans will remember Naomie Harris playing a version of the character in 2006’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and the 2007 follow-up At World’s End.
Nothing else that has been announced from Lucy Liu’s work schedule has a concrete release date. In 2020 it was announced Liu would lead the film Rosemead, based on the real life story of a dying mother trying to prepare her unstable son for her death, but it’s still in development. Early last year, ABC announced they were passing on her workplace comedy Work Wife. Last June Liu was reported to be co-starring with Tim Blake Nelson in the upcoming sci-fi drama The Invisibles about people who have literally disappeared from the rest of the world, but there’s no word on when the project will be released.