Stephen King’s Maximum Overdrive Features Lisa Simpson’s Voice Actor

In the world of horror, no name has created more thrills and chills in literature than Stephen King. From IT to The Shining, the level of creativity used to create these stories has been no small feat over the years. Par for the course, with every great book, there have also been film adaptations that have been released over the years. While some have gone on to become certified classics like The Shining and Pet Sematary, others exist on the opposite spectrum, such as Maximum Overdrive. That said, the film is likely Stephen King's worst, but it featured a cameo from a future fan-favorite voice on the long-running series, The Simpsons.

Maximum Overdrive was adapted from the 12-page short story by King titled Trucks. The film followed a group of survivors forced to make it out of a situation where a comet turned all mechanical devices against humanity. Nothing was off limits in the film, from cars to clocks, which often resulted in hilarious and unlikely deaths. One example of this terror was shown with the couple Curtis and Connie, newlyweds who needed to stop their road trip for a restroom break. Unbeknownst to viewers at the time, Connie was played by Yeardley Smith, who voices Lisa Simpson in The Simpsons.

Yeardley Smith Maximum Overdrive
Yeardley Smith Maximum Overdrive

The scene she's most famous for saw Curtis walking up to a man who was killed by the machines in his diner. Not long after, a massive truck tried to run over Curtis as he jumped out of the way, opening up Connie to utter her now-famous line, "Curtis, are you dead?" Although Connie had a thick (and fake) southern accent, the voice of Lisa could also vaguely be heard in certain moments. It has since made for a fun surprise for fans of the cartoon that didn't know she appeared in the film. However, Smith's experience on set was nothing short of chaotic.

In an interview with Yahoo, Smith explained her time on set and how she had to contend with unbearable temperatures, a language barrier between the cast and the all Italian crew and King's bout with substance abuse at that time. Smith also commented that she wasn't aware of King's struggles with addiction; however, she noticed that King would drink at five on the dot on every night shoot. Even though the set was haphazard, Smith also mentioned that King, “Could not have been nicer, and he was incredibly humble.”

Smith also mentioned a certain scene where a tractor pushed another car into the diner the survivors took refuge in. Although she was told that the car would be slow entering the building, it actually came at her very fast, and she added, “That scream is so real,” which served as another great account of how intense the shoot could be at the time. That said, even with all of the ups and downs, the film managed to release and is now infamous among King's catalog of books turned movies.

Yeardley Smith has since made a name for herself as Lisa Simpson but had never forgotten her time on Maximum Overdrive. As for the film, while it's now considered one of King's worst adaptions, there's a cult classic status that it's earned and made even more fun thanks to Smith's famous line. Nevertheless, while the movie was far from perfect, there are some aspects that have made it important in its own right. The best example of this can be heard on The Simpsons ever since its earliest episodes.

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