Stephen King's IT reboot - Cary Fukunaga takes on Pennywise


Balls of doom

In Wolves of the Calla, they’re called “sneetches” and apparently, they’re the same ones the Crimson King tosses at them.

'Totally took me out of the book. It’s a tiny thing, but that kind of in-joke really hits me.


At one point they literally find a box of them that freaking says Harry Potter on it. It was so weird.


Okay, I thought I remembered that from IT, but I couldn’t find a mention of it anywhere.

Really, really dumb and weird.


…and looks like Fukunaga is now out as director.

— Alan


Interesting rumors on this. It seems it was a two-fold issue. The first was Cary Fukunaga clashing with New Line over the budget. They wanted $30 million spent filming in Toronto or Hollywood, Fukunaga wanted a lot more to film key scenes on-location in New York State. The second issue was New Line getting cold feet based on the miserable performance of Poltergeist over the weekend.


Here’s what happened, according to Cary Fukunaga:

“I was trying to make an unconventional horror film. It didn’t fit into the algorithm of what they knew they could spend and make money back on based on not offending their standard genre audience. Our budget was perfectly fine. We were always hovering at the $32 million mark, which was their budget. It was the creative that we were really battling. It was two movies. They didn’t care about that. In the first movie, what I was trying to do was an elevated horror film with actual characters. They didn’t want any characters. They wanted archetypes and scares. I wrote the script. They wanted me to make a much more inoffensive, conventional script. But I don’t think you can do proper Stephen King and make it inoffensive.

“The main difference was making Pennywise more than just the clown. After 30 years of villains that could read the emotional minds of characters and scare them, trying to find really sadistic and intelligent ways he scares children, and also the children had real lives prior to being scared. And all that character work takes time. It’s a slow build, but it’s worth it, especially by the second film. But definitely even in the first film, it pays off.

“It was being rejected. Every little thing was being rejected and asked for changes. Our conversations weren’t dramatic. It was just quietly acrimonious. We didn’t want to make the same movie.

“We invested years and so much anecdotal storytelling in it. Chase and I both put our childhood in that story. So our biggest fear was they were going to take our script and bastardize it. So I’m actually thankful that they are going to rewrite the script. I wouldn’t want them to stealing our childhood memories and using that.


Thats really too bad. I think Fukunaga had the right idea on how to properly portray this novel on film. Steven King novels have quite often given Hollywood fits as they try to adapt them. In IT, character development would be essential and a slow build is exactly what the story calls for. It sounds like the studio wanted a cheap slasher flick with Kings name attached to it, instead of actually putting out a real adaptation.


Here’s your first shot of the new Pennywise:

Yup. That’s a sinister clown.


So presumably this is going to be more along the lines of whatever New Line wanted in terms of budget and what not.

I had a discussion with someone recently about King. I really loved It when I originally read it back in the 80s. Except for the “kids escape the sewer part”, of course. I re-read it in like 2001 and I was blown away by two things.

  1. For some reason I did not remember that the two separate narratives were almost evenly interspersed, once you get out of the beginning. I remembered that there was some flashing back and forth but that the kids timeline was wrapped up in the late middle part of the book. Not sure why I remembered it like that. I found the actual way they were woven together unsatisfying. Although this was a minor issue because. . .

  2. The book had aged like a prize fighter who couldn’t give it up.

I assume we’re going to omit the train from this new version of the movie.


Oh, yikes. This looks more silly than sinister now.


Oh man. That’s a terrible shot/look/everything. I hope IT looks better in motion.


Search your feelings, that image has revealed the truth to you.


Maybe the new Pennywise identifies as an 8 year old female in a party dress, but still assumes the form of tall, male clown.




The teaser is here:


I like it. Er, IT.


Blargh. Nightmares incoming.

Is this still two movies?


That’s what is planned. Note that you don’t see any of the adult time scenes. It’s all about the kids dealing with Pennywise.

I think the idea is that if this fails, then they can stop there and it’s still a coherent story as-is.


This makes a ton of sense to me. The book is really two full stories anyway, inter-mixed, so why not just tell one story in full for the film?

This also looks like a movie I am way too much of a pussy to actually watch. We’ll see. Maybe for a Halloween with the entire family. During the day.


I read IT the moment it was released in '86. I was a huge King fan through High School and as I started college.

I devoured the book, and remember being engaged at the time, but it does not hold up over time. The evil clown just doesn’t do it for me, and as mentioned upthread, I group IT amongst the novels leading towards King’s nadir: The Tommyknockers. A book which I put down, and then put down King, for a good 20 years.

Obviously, I’m in the minority, as IT is beloved by millions. Maybe it depends upon how old you were when you read it? The Stand was much more of my personal King adolescent coming of age novel.

Orchestrating the ending so all the 11 year old boys bang their girl - friend, after destroying the evil of IT… I mean, I know it wasn’t written in a lascivious manner, but it’s exactly the kind of thing that editors allow to be published when your writer has become a bestselling phenomenon more famous than Jesus.