Netflix has optioned the Stephen King short story “Mr. Harrigan’s Phone” for both Blumhouse and Ryan Murphy to produce as a feature film, an individual with knowledge of the project told TheWrap.
John Lee Hancock is attached to write and direct the feature that is the latest story from the master of horror’s collection of novellas “If It Bleeds,” which has landed on the New York Times bestsellers list.
In “Mr. Harrigan’s Phone,” a young boy befriends an older billionaire who lives in his small-town neighborhood as they bond over the man’s first iPhone. But when the man passes away, the boy discovers that not everything dead is gone, and finds himself able to communicate with his friend from the grave by leaving voicemails on the iPhone that was buried with him.
Blumhouse’s Jason Blum will produce, as will Murphy and Carla Hacken. The film’s executive producers are Blumhouse Television’s Marci Wiseman and Jeremy Gold.
“Mr. Harrigan’s Phone” is the fourth film Netflix has adapted from a King story, including “Gerald’s Game,” “1922,” and “In the Tall Grass.”
Blumhouse has previously gotten into the Stephen King game and is readying “Firestarter” at Universal, which is based on a 1980 King book about a girl with powerful telekinetic abilities.
Hancock is the director of “The Blind Side,” “Saving Mr. Banks” and “The Founder,” and he most recently directed the Netflix film “The Highwaymen.” His next project is “The Little Things” starring Denzel Washington.
King is represented by Paradigm and Gang Tyre. Hancock is represented by CAA and Del Shaw.
All 44 Stephen King Movies, Ranked Worst to Best (Photos)
Where does “Doctor Sleep” place among the many big-screen adaptations of the horror master’s work?
Stephen King isn't just an author by this point: He's an institution, a legacy of classic horror stories that capture our imaginations, fuel our nightmares, and speak -- when he's at his best -- to our shared experiences as flawed, emotional beings. The best King stories scare so many of us that we all feel connected, and even the worst are usually pretty fun.
King's books and short stories quickly became hit movies, many of them celebrated in their time, and some flopped so hard that hardly anybody remembers them. Cataloguing every adaptation might be a fool's errand, so we made some tough choices and decided to focus only on his theatrical releases.
And even then, there are so many King adaptations that it gets tricky. The sequels to King's work rarely have anything to do with the source material, so they're all disqualified (even though some, like Larry Cohen's prescient anti-fascist monster drama "A Return to Salem's Lot," are genuinely interesting). We also cut King some slack and removed "The Lawnmower Man" from our watch list, since he fought to have his own name removed from the film and won.
(There are also some adaptations that are simply difficult to find in America, like the Indian adaptions of "Misery" and "Quitter's, Inc." -- "Julie Ganapathi" and "No Smoking" -- but we tried. We promise we tried.)
Even with all those caveats we felt one particular film deserved a quasi-official, honorable mention. Before we rank into every theatrically-released Stephen King adaptation let's give out one honorable mention...