Originally published in 1979, Stephen King’s classic novel The Dead Zone has never been released as an audiobook. But the story of clairvoyant Johnny Smith, who has chilling visions of the future when he comes in contact with others, inspired both a successful film starring Christopher Walken and a long-running television series starring Anthony Michael Hall. Now, the story will enjoy a new iteration narrated by Academy Award-nominated actor James Franco in an audiobook out next month, EW can exclusively reveal.
This isn’t Franco’s first brush with King’s work — he starred in last year’s Hulu limited series based on King’s historical time travel thriller 11.22.63. And the horror master approves of Franco’s latest casting within his canon: “James is a terrific actor,” he said. “I knew that he would perfectly capture the vibe and voice of The Dead Zone.”
In turn, Franco said of King, “He’s one of the most pleasurable authors to read or listen to. He just guides you along so well. Even though we’re from different generations all his influences and things he references and subjects he’s interested in seem to be all the things I’m interested in.”
Simon & Schuster Audio will publish the audiobook of The Dead Zone as read by James Franco on April 25.