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 $308 million and counting. Not bad for an R-rated genre movie with little-to-no notable stars, eh?
As good as the film was though, we’ve heard several times now that there was quite a bit left on the cutting room floor that had to be removed, for whatever reason. While a director’s cut is said to be in the works for the home video release, there’s probably one scene we shouldn’t count on ever seeing.
If you recall, back in September, star Bill Skarsgård teased that one of the things they had to cut was “really, really disturbing.” He didn’t go into detail on what it entailed at the time, but he did say this:
“There was a scene we shot that was a flashback from the 1600s, before Pennywise [was Pennywise],” the actor told Variety last month. “The scene turned out really, really disturbing. And I’m not the clown. I look more like myself. It’s very disturbing, and sort of a backstory for what IT is, or where Pennywise came from.”
Now, the cat’s been let out of the bag thanks to a copy of the script for the scene that’s since surfaced online, and we’ve got to warn you, it’s fairly disturbing stuff, as it essentially involves Pennywise eating a baby.
We’re not kidding….
“1637: INT. WELLHOUSE – NIGHT ABIGAIL, 19. Rushes in and SLAMS the door. As if trying to keep Satan himself out. She clutches her BABY to her breast. Kneels by DYING EMBERS in the hearth. She blows on ‘em but a flame never catches. Her Baby starts to fuss… ABIGAIL: Hush now, shhhh… it’ll be — She stops.
Realizes that the SMALL CANDLE CHANDELIER slowly spins above her. As if some unnatural force has caused its light to rotate around the room, like tiny primitive searchlights. She hears something slithering in the gray shadows by the Well. Occasionally we catch glimpses of a BLACK SILHOUETTE. Shifting its shape. As if trying to decide on a form.
ABIGAIL (CONT’D): Please, Devil… leave us be… Shape shifts again. A beam of light passes, revealing PENNYWISE, naked, lithe, flesh pale and translucent, a half- formed imitation of a human, opens his maw full of large razor sharp teeth, dripping with saliva. As the Tin Can spins clockwise, Pennywise moves counter around the room. Each time the light hits his face — It’s different. A Man. A Woman. A Beast. A Monster.
PENNYWISE: You mistake me woman. No mere devil, I am the Eater of Worlds. His voice is guttural, unnatural. ABIGAIL: But my child, not my child… He is innocent…
PENNYWISE: So you say. The Baby SCREAMS. Pennywise smiles. PENNYWISE (CONT’D): Beautiful fear… ABIGAIL: I pray Thee, take me. Abigail shuffles back. PENNYWISE: I will. And then, him. And thy husband and the rest of thy children, and all the savages who brought you here. And when you all rot in the earth, I will pick thy bones dry until no meat is left to pick. And then I will seek out thy bones and consume thy souls until nothing is left but the weeds! (beat) Or you will occupy yourself otherwise and not interfere. I will take her and you will live, and those of thy other children — in whom I take no interest. And you will thank ME fever and frost did not damn you to the soil. Abigail looks down at her baby again.
She’s shaking, doesn’t want to let go. Behind her, the Door OPENS. A Little Boy, 6, asks — BOY: Mama? ABIGAIL: NO! OUT! NOW! Frightened by his mother, the Boy runs. Abigail turns back to Pennywise. Wherever he may be now in the room. The light somehow seems to spin faster now. She kisses her baby and sets it down. It BAWLS. ABIGAIL: I’m sorry, I’m so sorry…
She turns away from the baby. Faces those dying embers. We keep on her face as they seem to begin GLOWING BRIGHTER AS — OVER HER SHOULDER — OUT OF FOCUS — Pennywise crawls over to the Baby and starts to feast. SHARP CRY FROM THE BABY CUT OFF as we hear a CRUNCH. Abigail continues to look into the BRIGHT ORANGE GLOW of not the flickering fire… …but the DEADLIGHTS. Her expression changing. Fear. Denial. Grief. Acceptance. And then nothing. Just a glazed look. AS IF NOTHING HORRIFIC IS ACTUALLY HAPPENING BEHIND HER.”
Terrifying, right? It’s unclear how much of this was actually shot, but it’s certainly easy to see why they had to cut it. The film had its moments, sure, but this likely would have been too extreme for most. Still, it’s interesting to get a look at what could have been and we now better understand Skarsgård’s comments from last month.
Looking ahead, it’s already been confirmed that Pennywise will return for It: Chapter 2, and while plot details are scarce, we know that things will pick up with the Losers Club 27 years after the events of It. Given that, we’re unclear as yet whether the film will herald the return of Finn Wolfhard (Stranger Things), Sophia Lillis and the rest of the gang, but assuming Muschietti and Co. incorporate flashbacks into the story, there’s a very good chance New Line’s sequel will feature both the original Losers Club and their adult counterparts, as the fight against Pennywise begins to reach its bloody conclusion.
Chalk that up as conjecture for now, though, as there’s currently no script in place and given that the demonic entity has been banished for upwards of 27 years, the Losers Club will now go their separate ways – at least, until the advent of It: Chapter 2 in 2019.