Hollywood is working on turning Stephen King’s brilliant post-apocalyptic novel The Stand into a feature film. It has, of course, already been a pretty good mini-series but… what will The Stand look like with a big movie budget? Or perhaps more importantly… what will The Stand look like directed by Ben Affleck?
Yep, Warner Bros., the studio with the rights to the book, is currently looking at Affleck as their first choice to helm The Stand. Before you begin the customary “oh god not Ben Affleck” eye-roll, know that Affleck has actually proven himself to be a really, really good director. The Town was one of the best movies of last year, and Gone Baby Gone (released in 2007) may have been even better.
What I’m getting at here is that no matter what you think of his acting, as a director, getting Ben Affleck involved in this project could be good. Really good. Much of the greatness of The Stand is derived from the way in which it handles and develops characters thrust together in extreme circumstances. Affleck’s previous two movies were, though far less post-apocalyptic, built on a similar premise. Ben has already proven that he handles groups of people under pressure brilliantly. Apply those talents to The Stand and we could have something special.
Whether it turns into something special hinges more on how much WB is willing to commit to it. One movie isn’t enough to do The Stand justice. To get this story right they’ll need at least two movies, and that’s a lot to ask from a movie studio. Whether or not they hire Affleck, what will really set the tone for this project is whether or not they decide to cram the whole story into a single film.
Give us two movies for The Stand Warner, or don’t bother at all.