- Was the lead singer of San Diego art-rock band Horsefeathers for seven years in the '70s.
- First job in the film industry was working as a receptionist (and later R2-D2 robot operator) for George Lucas's Star Wars Corporation.
- Won a 1986 Edgar Allan Poe Award from the Mystery Writers of America for penning "The Amazing Falsworth," an episode of the Steven Spielberg-produced anthology series Amazing Stories.
- Has directed several TV and film adaptations of Stephen King tales, including Sleepwalkers (1992), The Stand (1994), The Shining (1997), Riding the Bullet (2004) and Desperation (2006).
- Received the New York City Horror Film Festival's 2006 Lifetime Achievement Award.