J.J. Abrams is developing The Shining spin-off series for HBO Max. The new series is titled Overlook, named after the iconic hotel from Stephen King's 1977 novel. The 10-episode drama series is being written and executive produced by Dustin Thomason and Scott Brown, who worked on Castle Rock with Abrams, King, and Warner Bros. It is believed that the writing duo are already hard at work on the series in what has been described as a "mini writing room," in order to practice social distancing in our current climate.

HBO Max's Overlook is a prequel series that will explore "the untold, terrifying stories of the most famous haunted hotel in American fiction." This is completely different from the Warner Bros. 2014 project based on the hotel that was in development. That series was going to be a sequel to The Shining with The Walking Dead showrunner Glen Mazzara writing the script and Mark Romanek on board to direct. That series never made it past the development phase at the studio and will more than likely not see the light of day at this point.

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Stanley Kubrick wrote and directed 1980's The Shining, which is a big screen adaptation of Stephen King's novel of the same name. The thriller stars Jack Nicholson and is considered to be one of the best movies of all time. For now, it's not exactly clear what specific stories Overlook will tackle, but we should find out soon. The series is named after another one of King's locations, much like the Castle Rock series, which has been a success. With that being said, horror fans are still waiting to hear about a possible season 3 renewal.

Fans of The Shining were pleasantly surprised with Doctor Sleep, which was released late last year. The movie is a sequel to the 1980 classic and is based off of Stephen King's 2013 book of the same name. Doctor Sleep is set decades after the events of the original story and combines storytelling from the 1977 novel too. The movie was written and directed by Mike Flanagan and stars Ewan McGregor as Danny Torrance, a man with psychic abilities who struggles with childhood trauma. While it was generally a hit with critics, it did not reach the box office success of recent King big screen adaptations.

HBO Max will launch next month, though an official date has yet to be announced. As for when Overlook will start production, that is unclear at the moment. Things are a bit more complicated at the moment, so we'll have to wait and see what happens. J.J. Abrams and Bad Robot have a good relationship with Warner Bros. and Stephen King, so this seems like a series that horror fans should be looking forward to. The Hollywood Reporter was the first to announce the new Overlook series with J.J. Abrams and Bad Robot.

Kevin Burwick at Movieweb
Kevin Burwick