Following the recent addition of Joe Tippett, Deadline brings word that Kirby Howell-Baptiste (Killing Eve, Cruella) has officially been tapped to join Netflix and Blumhouse’s upcoming film adaptation of Mr. Harrigan’s Phone, based on Stephen King’s novella from his 2020 collection If It Bleeds. Production is currently underway and is currently targeting a 2022 release.
Howell-Baptiste is set to portray the role of Ms. Hart, the caring and concerned teacher of Jaeden Martell’s Craig. This marks the British actress’ second collaboration with Netflix as she will also star in the streamer’s long-awaited series adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman.
Described as in the same tone as Stand By Me, Mr. Harrigan’s Phone follows the story of a young boy in Maine as he befriends an old and retired billionaire named Mr. Harrigan, who first bonded together through an iPhone. When Mr. Harrigan dies, the teen puts the phone in his pal’s pocket before burial and when the lonely youth leaves his dead friend a message, he is shocked to get a return text from beyond the grave.
The project was first announced more than a year ago after Netflix, Blumhouse Productions and Emmy-winning creator Ryan Murphy (American Horror Story) had teamed up to acquire the film rights to the horror short story.
The film adaptation of Mr. Harrigan’s Phone will be written and directed by John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side, Saving Mr. Banks). It is being produced by Murphy, Jason Blum, and Carla Hacken, with Chris McCumber, Jeremy Gold, and Scott Greenberg to executive produce.