Tim Robbins is returning to the world of Stephen King in the second season of Hulu’s “Castle Rock,” and teased a return to a familiar prison.
Robbins, who starred as wrongly-convicted inmate Andy Dufrense in “The Shawshank Redemption,” will play another King character in Reginald “Pop” Merrill, who was featured in the novella, “The Sun Dog.” “Castle Rock” features many iconic King locations, including Shawshank State Penitentiary. With Pop being the head of a crime family, could that mean that all these years after he “crawled through a river of s—,” could Robbins return to the infamous prison?
“I’m not sure I can say,” the actor told Entertainment Weekly. “I believe there’s one [scene].”
“Castle Rock” smashes together various stories and characters from King’s works. The series takes place in the fictional Maine town of Castle Rock, which has been the setting for numerous King works including “Cujo,” “The Dead Zone,” and “The Body” (the novella that “Stand By Me” was based on).
Shawshank was heavily featured in the first season as the place where Bill Skarsgard’s “The Kid” was held captive for 27 years by Warden Lacy. The second season of the anthology is heavily inspired by “Misery,” where Lizzy Caplan plays a young Annie Wilkes. The character was played by Kathy Bates in the 1990 film of the same name.
In Season 2, a feud between warring clans comes to a boil when Wilkes gets waylaid in Castle Rock.
Paul Sparks will play John “Ace” Merrill, another legendary King character, who was played by Kiefer Sutherland in “Stand By Me.” In “Castle Rock,” Ace is taking over his uncle’s (Robbins) businesses and threatening a fragile peace with nearby Jerusalem’s Lot.
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...