If the summer blockbuster season fell far short of expectations – King Arthur, Valerian, Baywatch and The Mummy all struggled to leave much of an impression – then Warner Bros. and New Line jolted Hollywood’s box office back to life through the release of It.
Lauded with praise from the get-go, the Andy Muschietti-directed adaptation has since achieved box office glory, and recently knocked The Exorcist off its perch to become the highest-grossing horror pic in film history with a domestic haul of $228 million. Not bad for an R-rated genre movie with little-to-no notable stars.
Instead, Muschietti and his team placed their Stephen King adaptation on the Losers Club, a pool of freaks and geeks filled out by some of the hottest rising stars working in Hollywood today. One of those up-and-coming actors is Jaeden Lieberher, who took point as the haunted Stuttering Bill. It was a fairly nuanced performance from the young star, and while partaking in Variety’s post-mortem of It, Lieberher revealed new details of a freaky deleted scene involving his William Denbrough and Pennywise the Clown.
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Lieberher began by stressing that there was a plenty of scenes that didn’t quite make the cut, which goes some way to explaining the 15 minutes of additional footage to be included in the movie’s Blu-ray release. But on a personal level, the actor singled out one favorite:
I did have this scene where I climb up the tower at the end. When I’m chasing after Georgie, I climb the tower and I’m at a one-on-one confrontation with Pennywise and then I say that I’m not afraid of him, that none of the losers are afraid of him, and that’s how we beat him. But they took those lines and put toward the end, right after our big fight. So I had this whole thing where Bill Skarsgard is grabbing me and pushing me off the ledge, and I had to wear this harness. That was a more difficult scene.
That echoes previous comments from director Andy Muschietti, who reflected on two major scenes that were nixed to stay within budget.
A dream, where Bill sees— he’s leaning on a bridge, in Derry, and he’s spitting on the Kenduskeag Stream, and suddenly he sees the reflection of a balloon. And he looks up and it’s not one balloon, but a bunch of balloons, and then he starts to see body parts, and the shot goes wider and it’s a multitude of dead kids floating. I couldn’t afford it.
Perhaps some of those scrapped scenes will weave their way into It: Chapter 2? We’ll find out when Pennywise returns in 2019.