Why or why didn't more people appreciate Doctor Sleep...?
...Mike Flanagan's sequel to Stephen King's The Shining should have been a major hit for Warner Bros, yet instead, barely anyone went to see it, and one of the best horror films, hell, one of the best films of 2019 period, went on to rake in $31 million in the U.S. on a $45 million budget (though the film at least brought in $72 million worldwide, which still isn't very much compared to the budget). Doctor Sleep lost money, and instead of diving directly into his prequel to the series, which was supposed to follow fan favorite, Halloran, Flanagan went on to do other things.
In speaking with Cinemablend though, Flanagan discusses the prequel, and gave some interesting details on the plot. Here's what he said:
"We actually had quite a bit worked out for that one. That was meant to be the thing I went right into off of 'Doctor Sleep'. … It was very much its own [story]. I don't want to spoil anything. At the same time, I'm like, ‘Hmmm, maybe if this doesn't happen, it'd be fun to talk about it.’ I'd be happy to come back. I'd be honored to come back. 'Halloran' was always more about Dick as a younger man learning about the shining. And the 'Doctor Sleep' novel tees up a prologue for it perfectly with the story of his grandmother and his grandfather. Which he tells a little bit of in this [movie]. But the idea was to open with him as ['Doctor Sleep' actor] Carl Lumbley, and then to find a way to go back into the past and kind of tell this other story that inevitably would, very much in the way 'Doctor Sleep' did, inevitably bring us back to a familiar hotel. But I don’t know. I don’t know what we would do with it. I love it, though. And it was something we were real excited about. So I hope there’s a new life for it out there somewhere."
Admittedly, the story does sound a bit vague, and prequels are always difficult, especially with us knowing what grim fate Halloran meets, but the character himself is excellent, and we certainly would've paid to see Flanagan return to the Overlook Hotel.
Remember all, go support horror movies in theaters when you can. You never know what we'll miss out on in the future if you don't.
By Matt Konopka