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Stephen King Will Write a New Ending to The Stand for CBS All Access

Plus, James Marsden and Amber Heard confirmed to star!

Rachel Paige

Stephen King's latest foray into television is coming together nicely, as CBS All Access has now confirmed the cast for The Stand, a limited series based on the King book of the same name, as well as major news that King himself will write a new conclusion to the saga.

The story of The Stand follows a group of survivors who have survived a plague that wiped out almost all of Earth's population. The group is trying to make it to the Free Zone while avoiding Randall Flagg, a character who has made numerous appearances in King's other works, and one of their only hopes of survival rests with the 108-year-old Mother Abagail -- and neither character has been cast yet.

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As we have known for a while now (and was previously confirmed by showrunner Josh Boone), James Marsden will lead the series, playing Stu Redman, an ordinary working-class factory man in an extraordinary situation with a damaged quality to him that belies his exterior. Alongside him will be Amber Heard as Nadine Cross, a deeply conflicted woman who feels the consequences of her actions but is still compelled by her allegiance to Randall Flagg, the Dark Man. Rounding out the main cast will be Odessa Young as Frannie Goldsmith, a pregnant young woman navigating a strange new world who also has the foresight to recognize that there is evil lurking beyond the Dark Man, and Henry Zaga playing Nick Andros, a young deaf and mute man who finds himself in a position of authority when the unthinkable happens.

The bigger news, however, is that King is going to "write the last chapter of the series, providing a new coda that won't be found in the book," meaning there's more story left to be told here. After the news broke, King -- who wrote the 1978 novel as well as the screenplay for the previous 1994 miniseries -- tweeted that he'd been thinking about the "final ending" for 30 years, and now he's finally written it.

No production date or release date has been set for the series yet.

(TV Guide is owned by CBS Interactive, a division of CBS Corporation.)

James Marsden, Dead to Me

James Marsden, Dead to Me

Saeed Adyani / Netflix