sort of mid-career documentary that discusses most of his major books and films
Curated by Jason Forrest
Total Runtime: 0:49:37
Stephen Edwin King (born September 21, 1947) is an American author of contemporary horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy fiction. His books have sold more than 350 million copies, which have been adapted into a number of feature films, television movies and comic books. Since the early 1970s, Stephen King has been America's most famous horror writer. His books are a mainstay of paperback bookracks everywhere, and have spawned a multi-media franchise that includes movies, TV shows, video games and comic books. King is famously productive, turning out a novel a year and sometimes more. His string of bestsellers began with Carrie(1974), and his early horror novels include Salem's Lot (1975), The Shining (1977) and The Dead Zone (1979), all of which have been adapted for film or television. Since conquering the horror market, King has written novels in other genres and experimented with various publishing methods, including issuing installments of The Green Mile (1996) and beginning the Internet-first publication of The Plant in 2000. Continuing the legacy of American writers Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, Henry James, and H. P. Lovecraft, Stephen King is perhaps the most famous horror writer of his generation. He is known for his ability to transform the ordinary and everyday into the horrific, a talent that is exhibited in books such as Christine, about a car; Cujo, about a dog; Carrie, about a misunderstood teen; and Salem's Lot, about the ghostly, vacant house on the hill that exists in every town and is the stuff of neighborhood legend and childish nightmare. As Atlantic Monthly contributor Lloyd Rose wrote, "King takes ordinary emotional situations—marital stress, infidelity, peer-group-acceptance worries—and translates them into violent tales of vampires and ghosts. He writes supernatural soap operas." While some critics have dismissed King's work as genre fiction, others recognize the skill and sensitivity with which King taps our collective unconscious; his work was duly honored in 2003 when he received the National Book Award Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. Many of King's novels are considered classics within the horror genre, and have become part of modern America's cultural fabric through both King's books and the popular film adaptations that have been made from them. As critics note, despite King's extreme popularity, his more recent works reflect the same high caliber of writing and stylistic experimentation as did his early work. This BBC Omnibus episode is a detailed biography, with scenes from the many film adaptations of his work including Needful Things (1993), The Shining (1980), The Green Mile (1999), Stand By Me (1986), Carrie (1976) and Misery (1990).