Monday, 5 March 2012

All Work And No Play Makes Vader A Dull Boy PART II

I did say didn't I? I promised I'd be back so...


These Shining jokes just write themselves you know.

Last time we were together I told you all about Stephen King's works being adapted for the big screen and I purposely left a few of the bigger ones off, and now you're going to find out why!

I present to you, my loyal Vaderino's...


I agree it does sound weird but there is a reason behind it and now I'm going to be sharing it with you all. you lucky so and so's!

The term "Dollar Deals" and "Dollar Babies" was a term coined (guffaw I'm so funny) by King to explain how he sells his permission to adapt one of his short stories to a group of students/ aspiring film-makers/ theatre producers. His fee?? Yep if you hadn't already guessed it's $1!!! Who'd have thunk that hey? Well depending the title of this part has dollar referenced twice.....

Aaaaaannnyyyyyways, the terms of the deal state that the films can't be exhibited commercially without King's explicit approval. The deal includes if you do adapt one of his short stories, King likes them to be sent directly to him, he'd watch them then place them upon his "Dollar Baby Shelf".

With using this sort of deal, King can retain all rights to his property, he just gives exclusive permission to the film-maker to make their own non-commercial adaptation.

Well of course there has been a few exceptions to this rule as a company called "Granite Entertainment Group Interglobe Home Video" (Fuck is that a mouthful!), negotiated and purchased the rights to commercially release a select few on VHS in 1986. These shorts being, "The Woman In The Room", "The Boogyman" and "Disciples Of The Crow". This collection came to be known as "Stephen King's Night Shift Collection".

From 1977 thru to 1996 the known Dollar Babies are -

The Boogyman - Jeffrey C. Schiro.
Disciples Of The Corn - John Woodward.
The Woman In The Room - Frank Darabont.
Srajenie (The Battle) - Mikhail Titov.
The Last Rung Of The Ladder - James Cole and Dan Thron.
The Lawnmower Man - James Gonis.
Here There Be Tygers - Guy Maddin (never produced).
The Sun Dog - Unknown.
The Man Who Loved Flowers - Andrew Newman.

Now, just because you've managed to snag the rights to adapt a version of King's work doesn't automatically mean you'll do anything in film, tell you what as I'm so nice, let's have a look what these guys have done.

Jeffrey C. Schiro became a editor, mostly on TV Shows and a few TV Movie's. He did thought, direct a story for the "Tales From The Darkside" TV Series.

John Woodward did nothing of note really when you take a look at his IMDb. 3 films directed in total, 1983, 1990, 200 so I'm going to say he's pretty much due one soon, wouldn't you?

As for Mikhail Titov, there's not much information about for him, there is someone on IMDb who has the same name, can't be that many of them knocking about can there? This person on IMDb has worked in films, mostly animation so I'd say this could possible be him.

Daniel Thron seems to have done really well for himself to be honest with you. Working in visual effects on films such as Zodiac, G.I Joe (ugh), The A-Team, Tron Legacy and Transformers : Dark Of The Moon. his directing partner James Cole has done.......fuck all!!

James Gonis only did the one thing which was his Dollar Baby, we weep for you poor man.

Guy Maddin seems to have had a pretty successful career making 41(!!) films as a director, none of which I have ever heard of...but still 41!!!!

Andrew Newman is more of a producer these days, working on British TV on shows like, Peep Show, Fresh Meat and Pete Versus Life. He was also a writer on "Da Ali G Show", so you can pretty much blame him!

Now if you hadn't already noticed, but I've missed someone of this list, by far the most successful of all the "Dollar Babies".

Frank Darabont

Now this guy has definitely made a living out of working on Stephen King adaptations.

The Shawshank Redemption : The Greatest Movie Of All Time™ was actually Darabont's first stab at directing a feature film, talk about the only way being down after that! Next up was his version of The Green Mile, which is almost always on everyone's top 5 or top 10 lists of films. Lastly he also directed The Mist, which although it's about interdimensional beasts attacking a supermarket, is a brilliant film with easily one of the most bleak endings ever (I defy you to not cry!). Also if you do get the chance, please do try to see it in black and white as Darabont originally intended, it hits even harder.

Currently, 96 Dollar Babies have been made and 90% will probably never be seen by public eyes, commercially at least, but you never know, stranger things have happened and we may just end up with another Frank Darabont through this.

Have a look at the trailers for The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile and The Mist.

Vader Out.........

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