By MICHAEL GINGOLD
A little while back, Adrienne Barbeau revealed that she was returning to SWAMP THING territory for the DC Universe streaming service, and today Shudder announced that Barbeau will encore from 1982’s CREEPSHOW in the new series version.
Barbeau will star in an adaptation of Stephen King’s short story “Gray Matter” for CREEPSHOW, an episode written by Byron Willinger and Philip de Blasi (THE COMMUTER) and directed by showrunner Greg Nicotero. Also part of the cast are SAW franchise stalwart Tobin Bell and Giancarlo Esposito, who has his own King connection: He appeared in the author’s directorial debut MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE. “Gray Matter,” first published in 1973 and part of King’s anthology NIGHT SHIFT, is about the horrifying discovery made by two small-town old-timers when they go to check on an alcoholic single father in the middle of a storm. “I feel I’m in great company getting the opportunity to direct a story written by Steve,” says Nicotero. “Between ’SALEM’S LOT, PET SEMATARY and THE STAND, I’ve always found his stories rich in relatable characters forced into supernatural situations beyond their control—the everyday person’s primal fears. To visualize ‘Gray Matter’ for CREEPSHOW with the help of Adrienne, Giancarlo and Tobin was about as good as it gets for a horror fan from Pittsburgh!”
“I was thrilled when Greg asked me to join the CREEPSHOW world once again,” Barbeau says. “And then working with Tobin and Giancarlo, with Greg as our director, well, that was the icing on the cake—no, not that cake. Oh, you know what I mean.”
“Gray Matter” is one of eight stories revealed so far as part of the 12 being screen-translated for CREEPSHOW’s six-episode season. The others are “By the Silver Water of Lake Champlain” by Joe Hill, “House of the Head” by Josh Malerman (BIRD BOX), “The Companion” by Joe Lansdale, Kasey Lansdale and Keith Lansdale, “The Man in the Suitcase” by Christopher Buehlman, “All Hallows Eve” by Bruce Jones, “Night of the Paw” by John Esposito and “Bad Wolf Down” by Rob Schrab. More titles and casting will be announced soon; CREEPSHOW wraps production this week in Atlanta, GA.