It: Chapter Two’s Fun Secret Cameo Almost Didn’t Happen

It: Chapter Two

Spooky clowns scare me. But sadly, It: Chapter Two didn’t really hit any of those sweet scary notes for me. Honestly, I laughed and had fun more than anything else. It wasn’t bad, just kinda disappointing. I liked bits of it though and one of my favorite moments came when…

Ok, I guess this is a spoiler, technically, so here’s a polite warning for those of you worried about stuff like that.

Are they gone? Good.

My favorite part of the movie was when Stephen King, playing a thrift store owner and voracious reader, showed up and negged himself/the people who neg him on the reg. It was a great cameo and the prolific author sat down with Vanity Fair to talk about it recently, saying he enjoyed getting to take a potshot at a version of himself as himself. “Yep, it was a huge pleasure to do that,” he told the interviewer with a laugh.

There was originally an even grander version of that shop scene though that would have featured young Bill and Bev interacting with a younger version of King’s shopkeeper. Instead of digitally de-aging the author, though, they were going to go one step further: they were going to cast Joe Hill, King’s son, in the role. “Andy’s [Muschietti] original idea was so genius…and it would’ve worked because Joe and I look a lot alike,” the author said.

Of course, King has cut back heavily on his appearances in films recently, relegating himself to his continued writing. And when the idea of this cameo came up, the first thing the horror author was worried about was traveling.

“Andy asked me if I’d do that, and the major thing for me is: How hard is it going to be to get there? Luckily, they were shooting in Port Hope in Canada, and it was really just a hop. So I went up with my grandson, who’s crazy about movies—the oldest one, Ethan—and we hung out on the set. It was cool.”

Honestly, I think King showing up here finally broke that curse where all of his cameos make the movies that feature them flop. But initially, that very fear is what almost led to the cameo being cut in the first place, with director Andy Muschietti revealing:

“He said, ‘Actually, you have to know that I’m a jinx. Apparently all the movies that he was in with a cameo ultimately bombed. He wanted to warn me. I said, ‘I don’t think we need to worry about that. We can avert it. We can lift the spell.’”

Thankfully, King’s cameo didn’t hurt It: Chapter Two at the box office and though it may not’ve performed as well as its predecessor, the film is still doing perfectly fine for itself, currently sitting with a global haul of $185 million.