Dread Central has posted a brief paragraph from screenwriter Dave Kajganich who has been assigned the task of writing the filmed adaptation of Stephen King’s “IT” for Warner Bros. and Vertigo Entertainment. The story was announced back on March 12 and at the time I would say the online opinion seemed a bit mixed with a hesitant bit of curiosity. Personally, I was quite excited as I was not a fan of the 1990 TV-movie and hope giving it a big screen treatment will allow for it to be done right.
When I say “done right” I am pretty much referring to production values as well as the opportunity to not have to make it acceptable for primetime television viewership and based on what Kajganich told “Dread” I think we are off to a good start.
“The remake will be set in the mid-1980s and in the present almost equally — mirroring the twenty-odd-year gap King uses in the book — and with a great deal of care and attention paid to the back stories of all the characters,” says Kajganich. “I think the real twist here is that my pitch to WB — which they’ve assured me they’re on board for — is that this will not be PG-13. This will be R. Which means we can really honor the book and engage with the traumas (both the paranormal ones and those they deal with at home and school) that these character endure.”
Now this is what I wanted to hear. When it comes to the TV-movie Kajganich has touched upon the precise details that bothered me so much. Quite frankly, I just wasn’t all that scared. I thought Curry embodied Pennywise, but the film itself lacked menace and atmosphere. Basically a bit too watery for me.
As far as keeping the story from the book intact, Kajganich continued:
“I plan to be very protective of the book,” Kajganich continues. “The reality, though, is that WB wants to do this as a single film, so I will have to kill a few darlings to make that happen. You have my promise, though, that I will do this with the utmost humility and respect for King’s work. He’s the King, after all, and I intend to continue to pledge to him my allegiance.”
If memory serves me, and I may be off since I read “IT” so long ago, there is one scene I seem to remember vividly involving Pennywise having a mouthful of razor blades and biting down on his lips from the balcony in the library. Unless I am mistaken, this scene from the book was replaced by what you see in the video above in the TV-movie. That moment in the book for me is almost as terrifying as reading about Jack Torrance’s misadventures in the Overlook Hotel.
Anyone else looking forward to this flick or care to confirm or deny my recollection of “IT”? I swear that was in there, but like I said, it was a long time ago.