Saw Scribes Working on “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark”

Jason McDonald

For every kid who grew up in the 90’s there were, essentially, two books that kept us up late into the night.  “Goosebumps” (creepy, but mostly tame) and “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark”, which was insanity wrapped in a softcover shell.

Looking back at the art and stories that were featured in those books, it was amazing that they ever made into elementary school libraries.  Now the book series that made me fear spider bites is being adapted into a movie by Patrick Melton and Marcus Dunstan, two writers who previously worked on the “Saw” series and “The Collector”.

Deadline broke the news that CBS Films had purchased the pitch which will “adapt some of the Scary short stories into a screenplay about a group of outcast kids who stand up to their fears to save their town when nightmares come to life. ”  Given the numerous nightmarish tales to be found in the various books, it’s anyone’s guess as to which tales will make it onto the big screen.

For those that remember the books fondly, are there are any tales that you’d like to see come to life?  I have a few, but I’m not sure if they’ll be able to capture the horrific imagery created by series artist Stephen Gammell.  I don’t know how any sane individual could come up with the sort of artwork that he put into those books.  Just look at that cover. What the hell is that?!

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark


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      1. Dave Coulter December 4, 2013 at 3:25 am

        Still got it in my bookshelf!

      2. Jamiey Reddiex December 4, 2013 at 3:26 am


      3. Dave Coulter December 4, 2013 at 3:26 am

        All 3 of them actually!

      4. Justin Lion Weiss December 4, 2013 at 3:27 am

        Tyler Graham Nolan Swafford remember this shit as a kid

        • Nolan Runnelsbee Swafford
          Nolan Runnelsbee Swafford December 4, 2013 at 3:29 am

          Oh fuck. A fucking movie.

        • Nolan Runnelsbee Swafford
          Nolan Runnelsbee Swafford December 4, 2013 at 3:30 am

          I just hope it’s good. I didn’t care too much for the Saw movies. The only one I really thought was alright was 2.

        • Tim Bearden
          Tim Bearden December 4, 2013 at 3:31 am

          I loved these as a kid too. I actually just picked up part 3 from a thrift store a few weeks ago. Not nearly as good as the others or I remember. No clue how this would be a movie either.

      5. Tyler Graham December 4, 2013 at 3:28 am

        oh god yes

      6. Justin Lion Weiss December 4, 2013 at 3:28 am

        This was our shit

      7. The Creature December 4, 2013 at 3:29 am

        I don’t remember many of the tales in those books, but I do remember loving them as a kid. I would LOVE to see a movie come out of it. That would be incredibly awesome.

      8. Justin Lion Weiss December 4, 2013 at 3:30 am

        Better do it right or not at all

      9. Jordin Roden December 4, 2013 at 3:31 am

        One of the greatest books ever created!

      10. DemonicHoodlum December 4, 2013 at 3:32 am

        “The worms crawl in, the worms crawl OUT, the worms play picadilly in your SNOUT”

      11. Jesus Guzman December 4, 2013 at 3:35 am


      12. Tom Tfs Best December 4, 2013 at 3:35 am

        I own all three. They just recently released them with terrible art

      13. Matt Cary December 4, 2013 at 3:35 am

        Idc who makes the movie!! Never ever thought this would happen & the excitement I feel is uncontrollable. Goddamn takes me back 24yrs

      14. Sara Christopher Hayes December 4, 2013 at 3:35 am

        This was my fave book as a kid..loved the illustrations

      15. Tim Hatridge December 4, 2013 at 3:38 am

        I’m a junior high librarian. The kids still love these books.

      16. Bertha Torres December 4, 2013 at 3:39 am

        Yes…. I have 2 sets…

      17. Jim VonDoom December 4, 2013 at 3:41 am

        Earl Pitts

      18. Scarlett Pierson December 4, 2013 at 3:41 am

        Omg totally loved these growing up!

      19. Bblgm Pink December 4, 2013 at 3:43 am

        oh boy.

      20. Nessa BbyLove Gomez December 4, 2013 at 3:43 am

        I loved those stories those books were dope

      21. Jessica Harrison-Davis December 4, 2013 at 3:44 am

        Dont do it, God please NO!!!!

      22. Greg Blackman December 4, 2013 at 3:50 am

        Wow I had completely forgot about that book.

      23. Greg Hancock December 4, 2013 at 3:53 am

        Great books…but the guys from SAW?…damnit

      24. William Patterson December 4, 2013 at 3:59 am

        I like the story about the 2 farmers who make a scarecrow dude and they treat him badley and he ends up coming to life and killing the one farmer..

      25. Peter Sawyer December 4, 2013 at 4:00 am

        Daniel Cieplinski Well fuck

      26. Kirtina Perry December 4, 2013 at 4:12 am

        hopefully they dont go to gory. The stories are scary as is

      27. Kat Mccord December 4, 2013 at 4:13 am


      28. Nicholas Blondsey December 4, 2013 at 4:15 am

        While Ruth slept, a spider crawled across her face.
        It stopped for several minutes on her left cheek, then went on its way.

        “What is this red spot on my cheek?” she asked her mother the next day.
        “It looks like a spider bite” her mother replied. “It will go away, just don’t scratch it.”

        Soon, the small red dot turned into a small red boil.
        “Look at it now!” Ruth said, “it’s getting bigger!”
        “That sometimes happens” her mother answered, “it’s coming to a head.”

        In a few days, the boil was even larger.
        “Look at it now,” Ruth said, “it hurts and it’s ugly.”
        “We’ll have the doctor look at it,” her mother responded.

        But the doctor could not see Ruth until the next day.

        That night, Ruth took a bath. As she soaked herself, the boil burst.
        Out poured a swarm of tiny spiders from the eggs their mother laid in her cheek.

        • Sam Hain
          Sam Hain December 4, 2013 at 4:38 am

          Uggggggh. That’s the one that freaks me out the most.

        • Nicholas Blondsey
          Nicholas Blondsey December 4, 2013 at 5:18 am

          I slept with a blanket over my face for months after reading that one.

        • Daniel Loubier December 4, 2013 at 2:57 pm

          Me too, Nicholas! For the same reason I still look around the shower before getting in (thanks, Arachnophobia), I still sleep with the covers over my face.

      29. Nicholas Blondsey December 4, 2013 at 4:15 am
      30. Dave Newman December 4, 2013 at 4:30 am

        Keep us posted please. I think this book started my love affair with horror.

      31. Earl Pitts December 4, 2013 at 4:30 am

        they don’t make books like these for kids anymore lol.. this shits on goosebumps

      32. Deryck Deelocz December 4, 2013 at 4:32 am

        That Shit Is Awesome!

      33. Crystal Swenson December 4, 2013 at 4:38 am

        Just read my toddler one of these stories.. it’s all about tone

      34. Alex Paredes December 4, 2013 at 4:42 am


      35. Hez Kaminski December 4, 2013 at 4:44 am

        If this is true my childhood seems are coming true

      36. Mary Paille December 4, 2013 at 4:45 am

        Wow, I loved those books!!

      37. Bertha Torres December 4, 2013 at 5:04 am

        My favorite story out of the 3 books is “Bloody Fingers “…. Scariest one is “Harold “…

      38. Curtis Berti December 4, 2013 at 5:34 am

        So freaking awesome! I can remember buying these thru the schools book fair in elementary school!

      39. Jennifer Singer Pence December 4, 2013 at 5:35 am

        loved these!!! still have the whole collection!!!

      40. Kimberley Caine December 4, 2013 at 5:43 am

        I just unpacked that out of my boxes the other day I loved those books

      41. Bob101910 December 4, 2013 at 5:45 am

        Still remember the spider story. Forgot what the name of the book series was before reading this. Loved the stories, but they were the only books that had a weird smell to them. Made them a little more creepy.

      42. Nessa BbyLove Gomez December 4, 2013 at 6:03 am

        I like the 1 about the woman her baby and the bus driver

      43. Natalie Otenti December 4, 2013 at 6:11 am

        I used to loveeeee checking these out of my elementary school library back in the 90’s !

      44. Courtney Davis December 4, 2013 at 6:49 am

        Oh wow.. I loved that book as a kid. Along with Boney legs! I can’t wait!

      45. Ashley Rider December 4, 2013 at 9:29 am

        Yay! My childhood is coming to life!

      46. Faith Rightout December 4, 2013 at 10:14 am

        Sandra Lencioni we have to read these to the girls when they’re older!

      47. Joe Minicilli December 4, 2013 at 1:16 pm

        Stephen Gammel, one of my favorite and most influential illustrators. This should be done the same way Trick r Treat was done.

      48. Daniel Loubier December 4, 2013 at 3:06 pm

        High Beams and Rings on Her Fingers were terrifying. Viper was fun, too. Lots of good ones to choose from!

      49. Zebulun Cobbs December 4, 2013 at 3:21 pm

        Loved these books as a kid

      50. Matthew Ginter December 4, 2013 at 3:37 pm

        The art in that book terrified me as a child… And i loved it.

      51. Annabelle Nicole West December 4, 2013 at 6:46 pm


      52. Burent Thomas December 4, 2013 at 9:30 pm

        AWESOME Brandy Carr

      53. Jacob Crabtree December 4, 2013 at 11:18 pm

        So there will be almost ten movies and they will all in fact suck balls

      54. Nathan Golden December 5, 2013 at 2:05 am

        What?! I thought of this

      55. Greg Gladfelter December 5, 2013 at 2:39 am

        The scarecrow in the field that skinned the farmer and hung it up on top of the barn

      56. Shiyongseng December 5, 2013 at 5:52 am

        From the first book:
        “Don’t you ever laugh as the hearse goes by,
        For you may be the next one to die.
        They wrap you up in a big white sheet
        From your head down to your feet.
        They put you in a big black box
        And cover you up with dirt and rocks.
        All goes well for about a week,
        Until your coffin begins to leak.
        The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out,
        The worms play pinochle in your snout,
        They eat your eyes, they eat your nose,
        They eat the jelly between your toes.
        A big green worm with rolling eyes
        Crawls in your stomach and out your eyes.
        Your stomach turns a slimy green,
        And pus pours out like whipping cream.
        You’ll spread it on a slice of bread,
        And this is what you eat when you are dead.”

        The Hearse Song