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Stephen King sells film rights to Welsh students for $1

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Stephen King has sold the film rights to one of his short stories to a group of Welsh students for just $1 (77p).

Around 30 students at the Blaenau Gwent Film Academy in Tredegar will work on adapting the horror tale Stationary Bike, first published in 2003, into a film.

“Being given an opportunity to bring one of Stephen King’s novels to life is crazy,” said 16-year-old Alfie Evans, who is writing the script alongside GCSE drama student Cerys Cliff.

A tutor at the school said they discovered the Dollar Babies section of King’s website, where the author lists short stories of his that are not under contract.

It offers “film students who want to try their hands at a Stephen King story” the opportunity to request the rights to one for just $1.

A similar deal led to Frank Darabont going on to direct the critically-acclaimed The Shawshank Redemption after he bought another King story, The Woman In The Room, for $1.

King previously explained: “Around 1977 or so, when I started having some popular success, I saw a way to give back a little of the joy the movies had given me.”

Only around 10 of his short stories are known to have been adapted between 1977 and 1996.

Stationary Bike is about an artist cycling to lose weight after his doctor tells him his cholesterol is dangerously high due to eating fast food but begins imagining nightmarish scenarios.

It was originally published in the fifth edition of From the Borderlands in 2003 and in 2008, it was published in King’s collection, Just After Sunset.

Blaenau Gwent Film Academy aims to train hundreds of students a year in script writing, filming and editing.

The non-for-profit school is a project by Cymru Creations and involves young people working with professionals to create films.

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