Cary Fukunaga Talks Casting Pennywise for Adaptation of Stephen King’s ‘It’

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Stephen King It movie adaptation

Growing up I was a huge fan of Stephen King. My paperback copy of “IT” took a long time for me to completely get through, and by the time I was done the front cover was hanging on by a thread, but I looked at its weary body as something of a trophy. It was the first book over one thousand pages I’d ever read and I absolutely loved it, and as much as I enjoyed Tim Curry (pictured above) in the television adaptation, that adaptation never lived up to the imagery King creates in that novel. All that said, the next person to attempt to tackle a feature film adaptation of “IT” is something of an unlikely candidate, Sin Nombre, Jane Eyre and “True Detective” director Cary Fukunaga and he’s been working on it for a long, long time.

Fukunaga was first attached to the project back in 2012 when he came on as director and co-writer, tackling the 1,100+ page novel with Chase Palmer and David Kajganich. The plan is for a two-part feature film, but speaking with the Brazilian newspaper “O Globo” (via Bloody-Disgusting), Fukunaga suggests he’s been attached for even longer than we’ve known. “I’ve been in this project for about five years,” he said. “I had already read versions of the script but nothing felt right. Everybody tried to put too much into it, telling it from the perspective of the adult and the child in a two-hour movie. It didn’t fit. So I decided to throw it all away and start from scratch.”

[amz asin=”B002SR2PKG” size=”small”]As for how far along he is, it sounds like he’s gotten the approval of King, despite changing quite a bit, but he’s still on the hunt for the right actor to take on the role of Pennywise. “This will be my first movie in the US and I’m still trying to find the perfect guy to play Pennywise… It’s really good to know Stephen [King] likes what we did. We changed names, dates, dynamics, but the spirit is similar to what he’d like to see in cinemas, I think.”

Current expectation is for the film to begin shooting this summer. Whether that means we’ll get part one next year is left to be seen. Additionally, as much as I am not a fan of breaking films into two parts, I can get behind the idea here, especially considering how the story plays out with the main characters first during their childhood, then again as adults. I do, however, hope Fukunaga concentrates on making two complete films, rather than two halves of one film.

Here’s the book’s synopsis, and in the meantime, any suggestions for who should play Pennywise?

A promise made twenty-eight years ago calls seven adults to reunite in Derry, Maine, where as teenagers they battled an evil creature that preyed on the city’s children. Unsure that their Losers Club had vanquished the creature all those years ago, the seven had vowed to return to Derry if IT should ever reappear. Now, children are being murdered again and their repressed memories of that summer return as they prepare to do battle with the monster lurking in Derry’s sewers once more.