Guillermo del Toro Details Terrifying Vision For Pet Semetary Remake – Screen Rant

Oscar-winning filmmaker Guillermo del Toro details his terrifying vision for a Pet Sematary remake and his renewed connections to the novel.
Oscar-winning filmmaker Guillermo del Toro details his terrifying vision for a Pet Sematary remake and his renewed connections to the novel. Stephen King’s horror novel was first published in 1983 and is considered one of the author’s best works, having also been nominated for a World Fantasy Award for Best Novel in 1986. The story revolves around Louis Creed, a young doctor who moves with his family to a small town in Maine and learns about the titular burial ground that brings back the dead and uses it to bring back the family’s dead cat and later his son, only for them to come back changed.
Pet Sematary has since been adapted to various forms of media since its publishing, including the 1989 film for which King penned the script and a six-episode BBC radio program. The film would receive mixed reviews but was a financial success, spawning the 1992 sequel Pet Sematary Two, which was a critical and commercial disappointment. After decades of the property laying dormant, Paramount Pictures began developing a new Pet Sematary adaptation in 2010 with Matt Greenberg attached to write the screenplay, though the film wouldn’t get off the ground until 2017 when Starry Eyes duo Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer signed on to direct with a script from Jeff Buhler and David Kajganich.
Related: Pet Sematary’s TV Prequel Is Already Repeating The Remake’s Mistakes
In a recent episode of The Kingscast podcast, del Toro was asked about his thoughts on adapting any of the horror author’s stories for the screen. The filmmaker revealed he would love to tackle King’s Pet Sematary and detailed his terrifying vision for a new adaptation of the novel. See what Del Toro shared below:
“You know the novel that I would have killed to adapt, and I know there’s two versions of it, and I still think maybe in a deranged universe I get to do it again one day is Pet Sematary. Because it not only has the very best final couple of lines, but it scared me when I was a young man. As a father, I now understand it better than I ever would have, and it scares me. A hundred times more. 
For me, the best scene in that book is when [Louis] opens Gage’s coffin, and for a second he thinks the head is gone, because this black fungi from the grave has grown like a fuzz over the kid’s face. I think you cannot spare those details and think that you’re honoring that book. One of the things I thought about Pet Sematary that we would do in post is when the dead return, when Gage returns, I’d spend an inordinate amount of money taking out the sheen from his eyes. So that the eyes are dull.”
Del Toro’s vision for a Pet Sematary remake is indeed a more terrifying approach to King’s novel, namely in the depiction of the scene in which Louis digs up his son’s grave to bring him to the titular location. Both film iterations of the source material took different approaches to bringing the story to life, though the 2019 remake saw a slighter better reception for its darker atmosphere and tone, despite criticism for its narrative changes and division over the film’s inclusion of jump scares. In both films, one thing that remained consistent was the depiction of Gage’s exhuming, which lent an understandable dramatic focus to Louis in favor of the more terrifying details included in King’s novel.
In the years since its original publishing, King has consistently cited Pet Sematary as the novel that genuinely terrified him the most. Detailing his vision for a new adaptation, del Toro clearly understands what made the source material that scary as well as the emotional core of the story. Given Paramount is currently at work on Pet Sematary prequel centered on a young Jud Crandall for Paramount+, the likelihood of a from-scratch adaptation of the novel seems unlikely, though one can hold out hope for del Toro to bring his vision to life for the story or another King work in the future.
More: Stephen King: How Pet Sematary’s Prequel Can Fix The Remake
Source: The Kingscast
Grant Hermanns is a News Writer for Screen Rant, having just recently joined the team. Way back in 2015 while still in his college days, Grant got his start in the entertainment journalism industry with creator-friendly site Moviepilot until it shuttered nearly three years later. From there he joined the staff at and was its Associate Editor prior to coming over to Screen Rant. To say he’s a lover of film and television would be an understatement and when he’s not mass consuming either you can find him exploring the world of Dungeons & Dragons with friends or slowly making his way through his gaming backlog.