A Special Issue of the journal Science Fiction Film and Television, edited by Simon Brown and Regina Hansen.
From the publication of his first novel, Carrie (1974), Stephen King has been inextricably linked to the horror genre. The same is true for the film and television projects that have been adapted from his work, beginning with Carrie (1976), and the mini-series of Salem’s Lot (1979). Yet King is not, and never has been, purely a horror writer. One genre to which he has returned throughout his career is that of science fiction (SF). Alien invasion narratives such as The Tommyknockers (1987), Dreamcatcher (2001) and Under the Dome (2009) stand alongside time-bending stories like 11.22.63 (2011) and The Langoliers (1990), the dystopian future of Richard Bachman’s The Running Man (1981), and tales of science and technology run amok, for example Trucks (1977), The Mangler (1977), Firestarter (1980) and the horror/SF hybrid novel Cell (2006).
Each of these has been adapted for the big or small screen, meaning despite his reputation for being solely a ‘master of the macabre’, King’s work has, over the past twenty years, made an undeniable contribution to the SF genre on film and television. With the success of the SF television series Haven (2010-) and Under the Dome (2013-) prompting a revival of interest in adapting King’s work for the screen, the time is right to explore the relationship between adaptations of Stephen King and the SF genre. To this end the Journal Science Fiction Film and Television will be publishing a special issue devoted to the SF adaptations of King’s work, guest edited by Simon Brown and Regina Hansen. The aim of this issue is to examine King’s relation to SF, to consider the adaptations within the context of the film and/or TV SF genres, and to examine the relationship between the two. What kind of SF does King write, how is it adapted, and how do those adaptations relate to, draw on, or differ from, ongoing themes and representations in SF on Film and TV?
The guest editors are seeking proposals for articles of up to 6000 words. The deadline for submission of articles is 31 May 2016. The issue will be published mid-2017. We welcome proposals on any area to do with Stephen King and the film and TV adaptations of his SF work (or indeed non-SF works that have been adapted into SF, such as The Lawnmower Man and Haven), but particularly around the following:
• individual adaptations or series, or groups of adaptations, or original series. These include but are not limited to The Tommyknockers, Dreamcatcher, The Langoliers, Stephen King’s Golden Years, Firestarter, The Running Man, The Mist, Hearts in Atlantis, Maximum Overdrive/Trucks, Haven, Under the Dome, The Dead Zone (Film or series), The Lawnmower Man, 11.22.63
• The way in which King adopts or adapts the tropes of the SF genre
• King, SF and genre hybridity
• The relationship between King’s stories as literary SF and the adaptations as cinematic or television SF
• Adapting King as SF for the big and small screens
• The format of King adaptations (film, TV movie, mini-series, series)
• The impact of these adaptations on the SF genre in film and/or TV
• The significance (or otherwise) of the King “brand’ to film and/or TV SF
• King as source for/contributor to other SF shows such as The X-Files, The Outer Limits and The Twilight Zone.
Proposals of 300-500 words, and a short biography of 50-100 words should be submitted via email no later than 30 September 2015 to the guest editors Simon Brown (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Regina Hansen (email@example.com).
Simon Brown is Associate Professor of Film and TV at Kingston University. He has published numerous pieces on early British cinema, colour cinematography and contemporary American television. He was co-editor with Stacey Abbott of the special issue of the Journal of Science Fiction Film and TV on The X-Files (6:1, 2013), for which he also contributed the article Memento Mori: The Slow Death of The X-Files. He is currently working on a book on adaptations of Stephen King’s work on Film and TV.
Regina Hansen is Master Lecturer of Rhetoric at Boston University’s College of General Studies. She is the co-editor with Susan George of Supernatural, Humanity and the Soul: The Highway to Hell and Back (Palgrave-MacMillan 2014) and editor of Roman Catholicism in Fantastic Film (McFarland 2011). She has written and presented on science fiction and horror film and television, religion and the fantastic, and Neo Victorianism in TV and film.