Stephen King's Salem's Lot Casts A Key Role With A Very Interesting Actor

Lock your windows and string up the garlic, the next vampire movie just took another step towards your threshold. New Line Cinema's "Salem's Lot" just added Emmy and Tony Award nominee John Benjamin Hickey ("Hannibal") to the cast, to play the pivotal role of Father Callahan in the feature adaptation of Stephen King's original 1975 horror novel. The film is set to hit theaters September 9, 2022 under the Warner Bros. label.

Hickey rounds out the previously-announced cast, which includes Lewis Pullman Ben Mears, Alfre Woodard, Makenzie Leigh, Bill Camp, Spencer Treat Clark, and Pilou Asbæk, while the lead role of Ben Mears will be played by Lewis Pullman. Gary Dauberman, of the "Conjuring" universe and "It" films, adapts and directs.

As of Friday, October 1, a crop of fresh blood has been added to the roster — kiddie blood! Jordan Preston Carter, Nicholas Crovetti, and Cade Woodward ("A Quiet Place") have joined the cast of Dauberman's adaptation. Carter (Tyler Perry's "The Haves and the Have Nots") will play the adolescent Mark Petrie, who forms a hefty defense for the good guys. Crovetti ("Big Little Lies") shows up as the infamous Danny Glick, who becomes the town's first vampire and helps turn his fellow townspeople, while Woodward is older brother Ralph Glick, who vanishes without a trace. Crovetti is repped by Osbrink Talent Agency, Industry Entertainment, and Goodman, Genow. Woodward is repped by Coast to Coast Talent Group and Power Entertainment Group.

The Town That Knows Darkness

King's second novel is a good old-fashioned thought experiment on paper: what if Dracula returned in the 20th century, not to a big city like London or Manhattan, but to a small town? The story follows writer Ben Mears returning to his childhood hometown of Jerusalem's Lot as he writes his next book, only to discover that a vampire is treating the town like a personal buffet. As with most great horror stories, the monster is only a gear in the subtextual machine; the author of "The Stand" and "The Shining" is really delivering an elegy for the small American town and voicing (through his rich characters) anxieties over an increasingly invasive American government, which is why the story works so well despite its simple premise and well-trodden genre territory.

Hickey, coming off of a handful of TV series this year, has a key role as Father Donald Frank Callahan. The priest is an alcoholic, deeply troubled clergyman whose crisis of faith leads to tragic results in the town of Jerusalem's Lot. As townspeople are killed, he naturally presides over their funerals, further undermining the strength of his Roman Catholic convictions. Hickey is in good company: the role was previously played by James Cromwell ("L.A. Confidential") in the novel's 2004 miniseries adaptation. 

"Salem's Lot" was first adapted into a two-part CBS miniseries in 1979, with Larry Cohen helming a sequel, "Return To Salem's Lot," in 1987. A U.K. radio drama adaptation followed in 1995, and TNT dropped the aforementioned adapted miniseries in 2004. This latest feature has New Line tag-teaming once again with "The Conjuring" creator James Wan, who produces along with Atomic Monster colleague Michael Clear, Vertigo's Roy Lee, and Mark Wolper. Gary Dauberman, Michael Bederman, Vertigo's Andrew Childs and Atomic Monster's Judson Scott are executive producing.