When news of the Covid-19 pandemic broke earlier this year, people began readily comparing it to Stephen King’s 1978 post-apocalyptic novel, The Stand. Roughly six months into the U.S. falling victim to the virus, and CBS All Access has announced that a new nine-part The Stand series drops on December 17th.
Coincidentally, the show was forced to wrap production in March when the U.S. went into lockdown mode, according to Vanity Fair, but CBS is now ready to introduce King’s classic novel to a new audience.
“During the two years we spent making The Stand, we all felt the responsibility of adapting what may be the most beloved work of one of the world’s most beloved storytellers, but none of us could have imagined that Stephen King’s 40-year-old masterpiece about a global pandemic would come to be so eerily relevant,” Benjamin Cavell, showrunner and executive producer said in a statement (via EW). “We’re honored to tell this sprawling, epic story, including a new coda that Stephen King has wanted to add for decades. We’re so proud of this show and its attempt to find meaning and hope in the most uncertain of times. We can’t wait to share it with the world.”
The show — which focuses on a mysterious virus that wipes out 99% of the population — stars Whoopi Goldberg (Mother Abagail), Alexander Skarsgård (Randall Flagg), James Marsden (Stu Redman), Odessa Young (Frannie Goldsmith), Jovan Adepo (Larry Underwood), Amber Heard (Nadine Cross), Owen Teague (Harold Lauder), Henry Zaga (Nick Andros), Brad William Henke (Tom Cullen), Irene Bedard (Ray Bretner), Nat Wolff (Lloyd Henreid), Eion Bailey (Weizak), Heather Graham (Rita Blakemoor), Katherine McNamara (Julie Lawry), Fiona Dourif (Ratwoman), Natalie Martinez (Dayna Jurgens), Hamish Linklater (Dr. Jim Ellis), Daniel Sunjata (Cobb) and Greg Kinnear (Glen Bateman).
In March, King also plans to drop a new book, Later, which mixes true crime and the supernatural. The synopsis reads: “The son of a struggling single mother, Jamie Conklin just wants an ordinary childhood. But Jamie is no ordinary child. Born with an unnatural ability his mom urges him to keep secret, Jamie can see what no one else can see and learn what no one else can learn. But the cost of using this ability is higher than Jamie can imagine — as he discovers when an NYPD detective draws him into the pursuit of a killer who has threatened to strike from beyond the grave.”