Stephen King's The Institute TV Series in Development

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Stephen King's The Institute is becoming a limited series from the creative team behind Mr. Mercedes.

Stephen King‘s latest novel, The Institute, which hit shelves on Sept. 10, is already becoming a TV series, according to Deadline. Spyglass Media Group is developing the limited series, with the Mr. Mercedes creative team of David E. Kelly and Jack Bender attached to the project. Bender is set to direct the adaptation from a script by Kelly.

“I’m delighted to be working with Jack and David, the creative team behind Mr. Mercedes,” King said in a statement. “We think alike, and I believe The Institute is going to be a great success.”

This latest King adaptation shouldn’t come as much of a surprise considering that most of the horror master’s recent works have been optioned in the wake of the success of the It movies, the first of which is the highest-grossing horror movie of all time. (It Chapter Two also had a great opening weekend.) That King’s “scariest novel yet” is next in line for an adaptation is a foregone conclusion at this point. 

Here’s the synopsis of the novel:

In the middle of the night, in a house on a quiet street in suburban Minneapolis, intruders silently murder Luke Ellis’s parents and load him into a black SUV. The operation takes less than two minutes. Luke will wake up at The Institute, in a room that looks just like his own, except there’s no window. And outside his door are other doors, behind which are other kids with special talents—telekinesis and telepathy—who got to this place the same way Luke did: Kalisha, Nick, George, Iris, and ten-year-old Avery Dixon. They are all in Front Half. Others, Luke learns, graduated to Back Half, “like the roach motel,” Kalisha says. “You check in, but you don’t check out.”

In this most sinister of institutions, the director, Mrs. Sigsby, and her staff are ruthlessly dedicated to extracting from these children the force of their extranormal gifts. There are no scruples here. If you go along, you get tokens for the vending machines. If you don’t, punishment is brutal. As each new victim disappears to Back Half, Luke becomes more and more desperate to get out and get help. But no one has ever escaped from the Institute.

As psychically terrifying as Firestarter, and with the spectacular kid power of It, The Institute is Stephen King’s gut-wrenchingly dramatic story of good vs. evil in a world where the good guys don’t always win.

No production start date or release date has been set. We’ll keep you updated as we hear more!

John Saavedra is an associate editor at Den of Geek. Read more of his work here. Follow him on Twitter @johnsjr9 and make sure to check him out on Twitch.


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John Saavedra

Sep 11, 2019



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