Pet Sematary - the Stephen King novel that will make you paranoid every time Tiddles looks at you funny - is the latest of the horror master's stories to get a modern movie adaptation. It's being directed by Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer, and will be released in 2019.
It looks true to the story we know and love of pet resurrection gone wrong, but with some intriguing new scenes, like the children's masked parade through the woods. The directors previously made cult horror Starry Eyes, which is a disturbing look at fame and Hollywood and a very good sign for this particular reboot.
The big question is, even with the added gloss the update will bring, if anything can ever compete with the 1989 version's horrific (and looking back pretty problematic) spinal meningitis body horror. Of all the crazy scenes in that version, the one that sticks in the mind is the flashbacks to the character of Zelda. A sister locked away in back bedroom, her skin stretched tight over her twisted skeleton, she's pure nightmare fuel.
Zelda, a 10 year old girl, was actually played by a young Andrew Hubatsek under 14 hours worth of makeup. Director Mary Lambert made the casting choice because she thought the girls that auditioned were too sweet.
The directors of the new adaption have revealed that their version of Zelda will be truer to the original novel. "It’s more accurate to the book, I’ll just say that,” Widmyer told Entertainment Weekly (opens in new tab). "In the original movie, it’s a 21-year-old guy in drag playing it, and in the book, as you recall, it’s a 10-year-old girl."
"You go, ‘How do you top Zelda? It was big and scary and awesome, but if you think about the reality of the Zelda situation, what that would do to a family, with her wasting away in this bedroom, and a younger sister being frightened of her older sister’s debilitating illness, that on its own is pretty scary."