Stephen King At The Movies: The 20 Highest Grossing Film Adaptations Of His Books

Stephen King At The Movies: The 20 Highest Grossing Film Adaptations Of His Books

Stephen King is one of the most adapted writers on the planet for books made into movies and TV shows. But did you know that even though he writes really good content, most of his work has not had real high box office returns?

“The True Apex Predator!”

There are some exceptions to that rule, but Stephen King is probably the most adapted author in the world because he writes really engaging characters. The problem is, not all of his prose gets the best translation on the big (and small) screen.

Take a look at the Box Office Mojo list below for the Top 20 Stephen King movies that were based on his extensive catalogue of literary works. That includes his horror, sci-fi and drama novels.

  1. The Green Mile – $136 million.
  2. 1408 – $71 million.
  3. Misery – $61 million
  4. Pet Sematary – $57 million.
  5. Stand By Me (The Body) – $52 million.
  6. Secret Window – $48 million.
  7. The Shining (1980) – $44 million
  8. The Running Man (as Richard Bachmann) – $38 million.
  9. Carrie (2013) – $35 million.
  10. Carrie (1976) – $33.8 million.
  11. Dreamcatcher – $33 million.
  12. **The Lawnmower Man – $32 million. (Title only – not an actual Stephen King story.)
  13. Sleepwalkers – $30 million.
  14. The Shawshank Redemption – $28 million.
  15. The Mist – $25 million.
  16. Dolores Claiborne – $24.3 million.
  17. Hearts in Atlantis – $24 million.
  18. Cujo – $21.1 million.
  19. Creepshow – $21.02 million.
  20. Christine – $21.01 million.

With all of those Stephen King movies in rotation at the box office over the past 40 years, you might also be surprised to know that his films have grossed over $1 billion collectively, which includes the forty that have had runs at the box office.

“Death is an illusion!”

Now there is a good chance that this list will be outdated in the next week or so with the release of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower and next month’s IT. As matter of fact, The Dark Tower is already out in theaters and has already brought in $19.5 million. The sky is the limit as too how high it might reach, but Stephen King’s IT stands to do a whole lot better, based on the intensity of the trailers that have been released over the summer.

[Featured Image by Columbia Pictures]

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About Nick Younker 161 Articles
Nick Younker has spent over fifteen years working in the local and national media. After transitioning from television to online journalism, he honed in on his lifelong love of horror entertainment and blended it with his unique abilities as a writer. He is the father of two gifted children and has spent most of his life in southern Indiana, excluding 3 years in Atlanta while working with Turner Entertainment. You can catch up with him on Twitter at @NYounker, or on his website,, where he publishes his daily news articles about updates in the horror, sci-fi and entertainment industry.

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