New Line’s adaptation of It and It: Chapter Two were horror films that left a mark on viewers. Clowns bring out a unique sense of fear in many, and the origins behind that are plentiful. Like the urban legend of the clown statue in the baby’s nursery — if you haven’t read that one, it’s spooky, trust us. Then there was that whole killer clown in the woods thing happening a few years ago.
So yeah, clowns are pretty terrifying, and Pennywise is the sum of all of that fear wrapped up in one. One person who knows that well is Cary Fukunaga. Fukanaga was initially supposed to direct New Line’s It.
However, some things happened behind the scenes that prohibited him from directing the film. Andy Muschietti ended up directing the movie, and they were intense. They left you with an eerie feeling even after you’d watched them.
Fukunaga’s, alongside Chase Palmer, adaptation of the film would have been more of a drama type of film with elements of horror, sort of like another infamously terrifying classic film. In a recent chat with Bloody Disgusting, Fukunaga had this to say about the differences. The film also would have featured another actor as Pennywise, Will Poulter.
“I was on that for four or five years with Warners and then it got moved to New Line, right before we were about to go into production. I think New Line’s view of what they wanted and my view of what I wanted were very different. I wanted to do a drama with horror elements, more like The Shining.”
He went on to say that he thinks the big disconnect was in the direction the studio wanted to go with the film; their vision was different.
“I think they wanted to do something more pure horror like Annabelle from the Conjuring films. That was essentially the disconnect.”
You can watch both It and It Chapter Two this spooky season on HBO Max.