Stephen King has been an amazingly profilic, as well as popular, author.
He's best known for his horror stories - with narratives that rattle along and have lots of vivid moments (many not for the squeamish). Films and TV mini-series adapted from his works have, not surprisingly, also been many: his focus on story and action and character rather than too much introspection makes him attractive, in addition to his high readership.
King is one of those authors sufficiently well known to sometimes get his name above the title with a possessory credit, whether on screen or in advertising. The latest King adaptation, Doctor Sleep, continues this.
It might be contractual or just an attempt to attract audiences by using his name. The latter theory is given credence by what happened with the film originally billed as Stephen King's The Lawnmower Man. King sued, saying the film differed substantially from his short story and a legal battle ensued. Eventually, the filmmakers were allowed to use a "based on" onscreen credit but not to use King's name in any advertising. King also received a hefty settlement.
The Lawnmower Man was not a good movie and it's tempting to think this might have contributed to King's lawsuit, but his work has resulted in films of widely varying quality.
The Shining, the predecessor to Doctor Sleep, was first filmed by Stanley Kubrick and King has made no secret of his dislike for the result (he described it "a big, beautiful Cadillac with no engine inside it"). Some of his complaints seem justified even if you're not familiar with the book. It's a very cold movie - not just because of the wintry setting. And Jack Nicholson's character seems, inappropriately, a little unhinged from the start so there's not much further he can go before seeming over the top. But it's certainly a memorable performance that produced one of the most quoted and parodied moments in horror history ("Heeeeeere's Johnny!").
Still, although King was involved in a TV remake that better reflected his intentions, it's the Kubrick film that's well remembered. At least King didn't sue Kubrick.
Interestingly, the movie version of the sequel seems to combine elements from both King's book and Kubrick's movie. I wonder how King feels about that?
King did like the movie Brian De Palma made from Carrie. It was also successful critically and commercially and both Sissy Spacek as the abused teenager who wreaks revenge with her telekinetic powers and Piper Laurie as her fanatical mother received Oscar nominations (rare for horror movies). Subsequent adaptations - a sequel, a TV movie and a cinema remake - fared less well.
One of King's great talents is writing about childhood and adolescence. Carrie, the non-horror tale The Body - made into the excellent Stand By Me - and the childhood sections of It are among his best achievements (and the adult sequences of It, whether as book, mini-series or movie are markedly inferior).
Not that King can't create good adult characters. The prison drama The Shawshank Redemption - adapted from the novella Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption - is regarded as a modern classic and Misery and Cujo worked excellently as films despite their mostly confined settings.
Interestingly, Dreamcatcher, despite a script co-written by veteran William Goldman, who also adapted Misery) with writer-director Lawrence Kasdan (Raiders of the Lost Ark), was a failure: King aptly called it "a trainwreck".
While he is obviously entitled to his opinions on adaptations of his work, King learned the hard way that making a movie isn't easy. His sole venture into directing, Maximum Overdrive, based on his story Cars, was universally reviled - even by him. King has said he was "coked out of my mind all through production, and I didn't know what I was doing."