Horror master Stephen King names his 22 favourite films of all time
The undisputed master of horror, the award-winning novelist who has enjoyed unprecedented success when transitioning his work into cinema, has named 22 films which he considered his favourites.
Ever since Brian De Palma adapted King’s book Carrie into a film back in 1976, the novelist has seen none fewer than 50 feature films birthed off the back of his writing with more scheduled to arrive in the next 12 months.
Alongside Brian De Palma, King has worked with some of the best in the business with the likes of Stanley Kubrick, Steven Spielberg, John Carpenter, George A. Romero and, most recently, Mike Flanagan all taking King’s stories to the big screen. As King oversaw the release of Doctor Sleep, the highly praised sequel to his 1977 novelThe Shiningwhich was adapted by Flanagan himself, we decided to look back at some films that have had a lasting impact on the man behind the ideas.
“When you get a really gifted director in particular who wants to guide the process of the film, the actual creation, that filmmaker wants to work with the screenwriter in order to get certain effects that they want,” King once said of his collaborations with filmmakers. “There was a time when I distrusted that process very much. But having been around the business with so many films, I have more of a tendency to trust good directors than I used to.”
He added: “I love the movies, and when I go to see a movie that’s been made from one of my books, I know that it isn’t going to be exactly like my novel because a lot of other people have interpreted it. But I also know it has an idea that I’ll like because that idea occurred to me, and I spent a year, or a year and a half of my life working on it.”
The below list was comprised by the good people ofOpen Culturewho managed to scrape together suggestions in which King picked out for Bloody Disgusting, the British Film Institute, and Fandor. With a mix of some classic cinema and some new releases, King previously stated: “I am especially partial—this will not surprise you—to suspense films.”
Despite detailing at length his admiration for Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez’s 1999 film The Blair Witch Project in the past, King admitted: “My favourite film of all time—this may surprise you—is Sorcerer, William Friedkin’s remake of the great Henri-Georges Clouzot’s The Wages of Fear.
“Some may argue that the Clouzot film is better; I beg to disagree.”
See the full list, below.
Stephen King’s 22 favourite films:
The Autopsy of Jane Doe – André Øvredal, 2016.
The Blair Witch Project – Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez, 1999.