Stephen King’s ‘It’: Port Hope Extras Casting Is Amazingly Successful

After years of being talked about, the big screen adaptation of Stephen King’s classic horror novel It is finally happening. The hugely successful casting call for extras in Port Hope, the Canadian town that will serve as a filming location for Stephen King’s It, is perhaps the clearest sign we have yet received that the producers truly mean business and will have King’s work on the silver screen sooner rather than later.

Several days ago, The Inquisitr reported that Port Hope, which is situated about 70 miles east of Toronto, Canada, is being eyed as the home for filming the next screen adaptation of Stephen King’s It.

Now, Northumberland News, a publication local to the area around Port Hope, is saying that Third Act Productions, the studio behind the filming, has held a background actor casting call for the movie, and the response was overwhelming.

“It is one of my favorite movies so I had to jump at the chance,” said Shane Vale, a self-professed Stephen King fanatic and a resident of the nearby town of Trenton.

But huge Stephen King-heads like Vale were not the only ones to show up for the opportunity to be a part of It. In fact, producers may have underestimated just how many people, Stephen King fans and otherwise, would line up outside the town’s Knights of Columbus Hall for the event.

The casting call, which had been posted on Facebook, had specified that Port Hope locals were preferred. The post went viral, though, and it brought in many hundreds of people from as far as 80 miles away to “try out.”

Luckily, said try-outs were more like applications, so the producers of the Stephen King flick could go through the massive crowd of prospective extras fairly quickly. Candidates reportedly had to fill out their name, contact information, and a brief description of their physical appearance in a form, and they were told they would be called back if selected.

The casting call specified that there would only be 100 available extras roles, and with so many people showing up, one can assume a lot of people began to question whether they stood a chance of being picked for the long-awaited second attempt at a screen version of Stephen King’s masterpiece (the first attempt was a 1990 TV miniseries, and it has become a cult classic). But some people, such as 72 year-old Sean McCann, had a distinct attribute that they thought would give them a better chance of making the cut.

McCann notes that the vast majority of the prospective extras for the Stephen king film were children and young people. This is likely in part because the younger generations are the largest patrons of social media, where the casting call got the most publicity, and partly because younger people tend to gravitate towards Stephen King’s thrilling, straightforward storytelling more than the older generations. Either way, McCann said, he felt the fact that he was one of the few elderly people in the crowd might play to his advantage.

The Northumberland News piece says that the casting call went from 3 to 7 p.m. and that over 300 people went through in the first hour alone.

Local businesses were initially concerned about the gigantic throngs of visitors that showed up, but they soon found that the huge influx was great for business.

“It brings people here,” Vale said in reference to the casting call.

“I am going to eat here.”

Interesting to note is that the casting call asked specifically for a marching band and period cars from between 1970 and 1989. This suggests the movie will be a more faithful adaptation of Stephen King’s It novel than its 1990 predecessor.

This extras casting call comes on the heels of some other great news in regarding to casting for Stephen King’s It. The Inquisitr reports that Bill Skarsgard was recently chosen to portray the infamous antagonist of the story, Pennywise the clown. Also recently cast as the child versions of ‘The Losers Club,” a name Stephen King gave to the main group of protagonists, were Jack Dylan Grazer, Wyatt Oleff, Jaeden Lieberher, Chosen Jacobs, Jeremy Ray Taylor, and Finn Wolfhard. The role of Beverly Marsh is still up in the air.

[Photo by Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images]