11.22.63 (Hulu) 
Premieres Monday, Feb. 15
WHAT'S IT ABOUT?: Based on Stephen King's novel of the same name, the event series stars James Franco as Jake Epping, a run-of-the-mill English teacher who is tasked with traveling through time to stop JFK's assassination. 
WHY WE LIKE IT: Put those Under the Dome-instilled fears behind you. Not only does Franco lead a tremendous cast, but the collaboration of King and J.J. Abrams allows for a captivating, thought-provoking adaptation that honors its source material.

Hulu's 11.22.63 Has 'Significant' But 'Authentic' Changes From King Novel

Those who have “read and loved” Stephen King’s 11.22.63 will be “very satisfied” with Hulu’s upcoming adaptation, says executive producer Bridget Carpenter. But the eight-part series is not without its deviations from the source material.

Most simply said — and with minimal spoilers — the time-trippy saga follows Jake Epping (played by James Franco), a Maine high-school teacher who is urged by the owner of a local diner (Chris Cooper) to use a time portal to travel back to 1958, the device’s fixed destination, wait things out and ultimately thwart the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Sarah Gadon (Being Erica), Josh Duhamel (Las Vegas), T.R. Knight (Grey’s Anatomy) and Daniel Webber (Home and Away) also star in the series, which will unspool weekly starting Monday, Feb. 15 (yes, Presidents’ Day).

Pressed to elaborate on what has been altered from the book and to what extent, “I don’t know how to characterize the changes, whether they’re small or large,” Carpenter told TVLine on Saturday at the Television Critics Association winter press tour in Pasadena. But she then singled out one shift that she and exec producer J.J. Abrams agreed on.

“Neither of us wanted to do a voiceover,” even though the novel allows you to “hear everything” going on in Jake’s mind, she shared. “So J.J.’s truly excellent idea was he needed somebody with him. That nudge helped me draw a character that existed in King’s book, but I shifted him and made him more of a compatriot to Jake. That’s probably the biggest liberty, bit if felt really authentic.”

And 11.22.63‘s creator concurred.

“What’s so cool,” Abrams said, “is that Stephen King responded so positively to some of these ideas. I was unsure if he was going to embrace some of these significant adjustments, but they were necessary — and he saw that.”

Watch a new trailer for 11.22.63:

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16 Comments
  1. Shaun says:

    Eh?Okay

  2. DavidJ says:

    Awesome. Haven’t read the book, but still looks like this could be one of the best Stephen King adaptations in quite a while.

  3. Cooper’s character said it’s 1960. Yet another change.

    • Ws says:

      Yea the book went through a longer time frame.. it makes sense that they are condensing stuff for the show… hope they dont change the story too much though as i really liked the book.

  4. Tony Baker says:

    Calling it… it’s the black janitor from Derry.

  5. AnnieM says:

    Loved this book. Here’s hoping this adaptation is more “The Stand” than ”
    Under the Dome.”

  6. Joey Padron says:

    New trailer for the show looks good. Excited to see the show next month!

  7. herman1959 says:

    I had been under the impression that he goes back to November 1963, so I wasn’t too interested – we already know how it turned out. Now that he’s going back farther, the series has a few years to unfold; I’m interested now.

    • ? says:

      He has to live five years in the past before he can try to save Kennedy, and most of what the book is about is that. About what that’s like. It’s the journey, not the destination. I hope the miniseries ends the same way as the book, but I doubt it will.

  8. Curly Girly says:

    So are all 10 episodes going to be released at once (binge watch!) or are they releasing them one week at a time, a la The Mindy Project?

  9. Elana Leanna says:

    The only people who don’t like voiceovers are the writers. It would have been better than expanding that character.