Pennywise in Stephen King’s It remake has officially been cast and horror movie fans can rejoice at the new developments in the film project that was once thought to be defunct following the departure of director Cary Fukunaga.
In the beginning of the film project, the original cast member to play Pennywise in It was We’re the Millers star Will Poulter. But since the departure of Fukunaga and the subsequent delays for the film project, the new Pennywise in It will be Netflix’s Hemlock Grove star, Bill Skarsgard, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
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Fans of Pennywise and It should not confuse Bill with his older brother Alexander Skarsgard, who played Eric Northman in True Blood. Bill and Alexander both are the sons of Hollywood legend Stellan Skarsgard, who is perhaps most well known for his roles in Good Will Hunting, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and Avengers: Age of Ultron.
But for Bill Skarsgard to play Pennywise in It, that is quite a different leap from Hemlock Grove, which is also a book adaptation that was transformed into a TV series by Eli Roth on Netflix.
Although the news of Bill Skarsgard being cast as Pennywise in It has not officially been put on paper, Skarsgard’s reps are in final negotiations with the film’s producers, and all signs point to the project as a go for the young actor.
IT The night guard in the asylum is called Koontz, named after Stephen King’s rival author Dean R. Koontz pic.twitter.com/G78URIqpa4
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For Skarsgard to portray Pennywise in It will be his second major acting gig, as well as his second horror book adaptation, only this time with the master of horror himself, Stephen King. In horror fiction adaptations, there truly is no greater honor than that.
For those who are unfamiliar with Pennywise in It, he, or “it,” is the evil clown that is the physical presence of the ominous being that is described in the book as being from another galaxy. Pennywise takes shape as a clown whenever it preys on young children, which seems to be it’s only diet. Pennywise also takes the shape of a giant spider, a teenage werewolf and many other incarnations of things that children are most scared of.
In the book, Stephen King develops the evil clown by using instances from the past and present. But the present in the book is 1986, and the past is 1958. The premise of the consistent time jumps is that Pennywise, or It, can only come out every 28 years to feed on children. So the books heroes are two-fold. They battle Pennywise as children in 1958, and then they make a vow to come back as adults when Pennywise makes his 28 year cycle return, which occurs in 1986.
The groups of kids that battle Pennywise in It become known as the Losers Club and they band together after a series of mishaps leads them into trouble with the same school bully.
There are some moments in the book that are quite hard to swallow, which includes graphic scenes of sexuality involving children. But when It was released as a mini-series on the ABC network in the ’90s, it obviously did not use that material.
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It is unclear at this time if Stephen King’s It will more accurately portray the book by the author, but the project does have one thing going for it that the mini-series did not, which is getting a theatrical release that can show quite a bit more than the FCC will allow.
Bill Skarsgard will portray Pennywise in It for two planned films that will be released starting in September 2017. The first movie will obviously feature the film’s young stars as they first band together and learn of Pennywise.
The second film will feature the part of the book where the young kids are grown up and come back to their hometown to battle Pennywise upon his resurrection. Some might consider this bit of information a spoiler, but please understand that the first film is going to be some of the most tragic horror you will ever see in your life.
[Image via ABC]