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Alex Ross Perry Will Write and Direct Stephen King Short Story Adaptation ‘Rest Stop’

Despite Perry's conception of himself as a Hollywood outsider, the "Her Smell" writer/director seems to have landed on his feet.

'Golden Exits' premiere, Sundance Film Festival, Park City, Utah, USA - 22 Jan 2017

Alex Ross Perry at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival

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Legendary Pictures has tapped Alex Ross Perry to write and direct a new film adaptation of the Stephen King short story “Rest Stop,” Variety is reporting. The short story follows an author who flees the scene after overhearing and breaking up a domestic spat at a rest stop. Initially published in a 2003 issue of Esquire, “Rest Stop” won the National Magazine Award for Fiction in 2004. It also appears in King’s 2008 story collection “Just After Sunset.”

According to Variety, the film will be a cat-and-mouse thriller following the twisted journey of two women after an encounter at a rest stop. If that is the case, Perry’s script will evidently diverge from the source material in some ways, including swapping the genders of the main character and focusing on two characters instead of one.

Perry is coming off of a critical highlight of his career with “Her Smell,” a dizzying punk rock epic starring Elisabeth Moss as an aging rocker and her deteriorating mental state. The film was hailed by many critics as Perry’s best film to date. The writer/director’s other titles include “The Color Wheel,” “Listen Up Philip,” and “Queen of Earth,” among others. He also co-wrote Disney’s “Christopher Robin.”

In a lengthy interview with IndieWire critic David Ehrlich, Perry lamented the state of independent film and questioned the future of his career.

“I guess I could be surprised by what happens next, but people will only support things that seem like they’re going to pay out, and at this point I’ve failed at that enough that I don’t know why I would ask someone to take that chance. Where does that leave me? It leaves me nowhere. Take your ball and go home,” he said.

While nothing in Hollywood is a sure thing, a Stephen King movie is a pretty safe bet.

King’s writing has never fallen out of favor in Hollywood for as long as he has been active, but he has had a particularly fruitful last few years in Hollywood. The King project “Pet Sematary,” starring Jason Clarke, Amy Seimetz and John Lithgow, has earned $43 million since it opened earlier this month. King’s “It: Chapter Two” is set for release this fall, and Ewan McGregor is set to star in “Doctor Sleep” — an adaptation of King’s sequel to “The Shining” — from Warner Bros.

Craig Flores (“300”) will produce under his Bread & Circuses banner, with Alex Garcia and Ali Mendes set to oversee the project for Legendary.

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