Stephen King’s best-selling doorstop of a novel The Stand is coming to CBS All Access. The star-studded — and timely — adaptation of the horror master’s 1978 post-apocalyptic novel premieres on the streaming service Dec. 17, with new episodes added weekly on Thursdays. But this take on King’s fictional account of the aftermath of a civilization-destroying plague isn’t the first small-screen adaptation of the story.
‘The Stand’ was turned into a 1994 miniseries
The Stand first came to TV in 1994. ABC aired the four-part adaptation, which was directed by Mick Garris, over four consecutive nights, and the series earned solid ratings and snagged multiple Emmy nominations.
Gary Sinise took on the role of Stu Redman in the miniseries, a part played by James Mardsen in the 2020 version. Molly Ringwald played Frannie Goldsmith, Laura San Giacomo played Nadine Cross, and Rob Lowe was Nick Andros. For villain Randall Flagg, ABC tapped Jamey Sheridan. (Alexander Skarsgård is Flagg in the CBS All Access miniseries). Legendary actor Ruby Dee played Mother Abigail, while Dee’s husband Ossie Davis played Judge Richard Farris. Even King himself had a cameo in the adaptation, playing a character named Teddy Weizak.
Where to stream the 1994 version of ‘The Stand’
Unfortunately, the 1994 version of The Stand isn’t available to watch for free on major streaming platforms such as Netflix, Hulu, or HBO Max. However, it is available to purchase on Vudu for $4.99. You can also buy the miniseries on DVD or Blu-Ray from Amazon.
How the original director of ‘The Stand’ feels about the new version
In a 2019 interview with Entertainment Weekly, Garris reflected on the arduous process of making The Stand, which involved 100 shooting days in six states. “[W]e had 126 speaking parts,” he recalled. “Yeah, it was massive. It was just huge. Literally, I was away from home for one year making it.”
Garris shared that he was excited to see the 1994 version of The Stand get a Blu-Ray release in 2019, which he said led to the miniseries “looking better than when we made it.” But he had no qualms about another director offering a fresh take on King’s epic story. This time, it’s The New Mutants director Josh Boone behind the camera.
“Josh is a friend,” Garris told Entertainment Weekly. “He’s been keeping me apprised. I’m really excited to see what they’re going to do. His budget is four times what our budget was. It’s going to be a 10-part, and I’m dying to see it.”
“I don’t feel competitive about it,” Garris added. “We did ours, it’s a part of history, and I’m fascinated to see what they’re doing. Josh told me that there were scenes that we did that they’re not going to do because they’re so familiar and iconic. I’m enthusiastic about it.”
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