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Trivia / It (2017)

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  • Acting for Two: Jackson Robert Scott plays both Georgie and IT when the latter impersonates the former.
  • Approval of God:
  • California Doubling: The Maine-set movie was shot in Toronto, while most of the exterior scenes in Derry were shot in the nearby town of Port Hope.
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  • The Cast Showoff: That really is Bill Skarsgård pointing his eyes in two different directions to achieve the effect of Pennywise constantly keeping one eye straight at the camera. It was intended to be done with CGI until he showed the crew that he could actually do it. He also worked with contortionists for the scene where his 6'4" frame is crammed into a tiny fridge.
  • Dueling Works: It was released around the same time as fellow horror film mother!, but completely trounced it in both reviews and box office gross.
  • Dyeing for Your Art:
    • Nicholas Hamilton had his hair fashioned into Henry Bowers's mullet with the help of an extension.
    • Also, Sophia Lillis almost didn't get the part of Beverly because the producers thought she wasn't feminine enough, because (according to Lillis) she is really short, and has a pixie hair cut. The only way Andy Muschietti was able to get her the part was if she would wear extensions throughout the film.
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  • Enforced Method Acting: All of the child actors went along with the decision to totally avoid seeing Bill Skarsgård in costume as Pennywise until they absolutely had to, so their shock on film would seem as genuine as possible. All seven actors, as a group, first saw him in the slide projector scene (one or two like Bill saw him individually before that). They filmed other scenes first out of order, or other scenes in which It appears to them as something other than Pennywise (i.e. Beverly's blood sink scene doesn't reveal "Pennywise the Clown" as such). They also made it a point to totally avoid Skarsgård off-set while he was still in full costume and prosthetics, to try to avoid getting used to his appearance.
  • Executive Meddling: Former writer/director Cary Fukunaga claimed this as the reason for leaving the project in 2015. The directing job passed on to Andrés Muschietti, who was enthusiastic about the film and based the movie on a revised version of Fukunaga's screenplay.
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  • Fake American: Of the Losers Club, Canadian Finn Wolfhard plays American Richie Tozier. Most of the secondary characters and extras are also played by Canadians, while Australian Nicholas Hamilton plays Henry Bowers.
  • Meaningful Release Date: The film wound up being released in 2017, 27 years after the 1990 TV movie. In the novel, IT comes out to feast upon the town every 27 years. Even better, the miniseries was released the year Bill Skarsgård was born.
  • Orphaned Reference: Pennywise saying "Beep, Beep Richie!" In the book, the kids say this when they want Richie to shut up. In the movie, they simply say "Shut up, Richie", making the line lose some of its impact.
  • Playing Against Type: For fans of Stranger Things, seeing Finn Wolfhard go from playing the Nice Guy in his group to the most foul-mouthed (though well-meaning) of the Losers can be a bit of a culture shock.
  • Refitted for Sequel:
    • A scene set in the past that was going to show the destruction of the Black Spot night club was planned to feature in the movie, but was cut out of the script to save on budget. It's instead planned to serve as the opening scene of the sequel.
    • A sequence adapted from the novel would've involved the kids building an underground clubhouse in the Barrens, in which they participate in a “Smoke Hole Ceremony,” learning about IT's first arrive on earth and how it ended up in Derry in the form of an asteroid. Budget and time constraints prevented this. The scene will be instead featured in the sequel (in one of the Losers flashbacks to when they were kids).
    • There was also another scene in the final script wherein the Losers would learn of IT's time in Old Derry, and the killing spree that occurred, with a flashback to the 1600s before It took the form of Pennywise actually fully shot but left on the cutting room floor. It's been announced IT's backstory will also be featured in the sequel.
  • Saved from Development Hell: It's been in production since 2009, ultimately passing rather messily from Cary Fukunaga to Andrés Muschietti.
  • Scully Box: Sophia Lillis admitted she had to stand on an apple box in some scenes, because she was too short.
  • Star-Making Role: Pennywise, for Bill Skarsgård.
  • Throw It In!:
    • In some scenes, Pennywise is seen to be drooling while talking to children. The buckteeth/fangs Bill Skarsgård was made to wear actually made him slobber, so the film makers went ahead and added more fake slobber into his mouth.
    • Director Andrés Muschietti was originally going to make Pennywise's eyes look in separate directions by means of using visual effects in post-production, but Skarsgård, in an odd case of an Actor-Inspired Element, showed that he could actually physically make his eyes look in two different directions at the same time as soon as he was made aware of this. Muschietti was impressed with his ability to pull this off and joked that Skarsgård saved him a lot of money in post-production.
  • Troubled Production: Pre-production in this case. Production on the film itself apparently had no real issues, but the movie languished in Development Hell for several years before losing its director and key writer over Creative Differences, with Cary Fukunaga stating that he was worried that the studio wanted to make a conventional horror movie out of an unconventional horror story. Fukunaga made a number of changes such as renaming the characters, along with more controversial changes such as scenes where Bowers ejaculated into a cake and had sex with a sheep. Beverly's father also explicitly tried to rape her in this version. It would have earned an NC-17 rating. Muschietti's movie is a more faithful adaptation of the novel.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • When the project was first announced in 2009, writer David Kajganich was hired to write a script in 2010 that tried to cram the entire book into a single script (that script, at one point, had the Losers Club meeting their older selves to team up and defeat Pennywise at the ending).
    • Guillermo del Toro expressed interest in doing a film adaptation, but per his busy schedule, couldn't find the time to do so.
    • The Duffer Brothers, of Stranger Things fame, asked to do a film adaptation of the book, but Warner Brothers said no. This eventually resulted in the former series' creation.
    • Cary Fukunaga (Season 1 of True Detective) was tapped to write and direct back in 2012. After several years working on the project Fukunaga ultimately left the project in 2015, citing Executive Meddling that clashed with his artistic vision. He had planned for some pretty strange changes, re-naming many of the characters: Bill became Willy, Henry became Travis, Belch became Snatch and Patrick Hockstetter became Patrick Hockstettler. His more extreme changes from the source material — which were included in subsequent drafts — included Henry Bowers having sex with a sheep, ejaculating on a birthday cake, and gave Pennywise backstory of sorts (the 2014 version had him trigger an attack at a bar in the 1800s for his own amusement while the 2015 version had made him a Wendigo-type figure who had been living around since Colonial Times). In addition, the script wouldn't have emphasized Pennywise's shapeshifting abilities as much, which is something that Andrés Muschietti wanted to change when they revised the script.
    • Will Poulter was originally set to play Pennywise, even gaining Tim Curry's approval, but he dropped out due to scheduling conflicts and the departure of Fukunaga. The part then went to Bill Skarsgård.note 
    • Chloe Grace Moretz of Kick-Ass fame was considered for the role of Beverly Marsh, but the film spent so long in Development Hell that Moretz had aged out of the role by the time things got under way. She did play the lead role in another Stephen King adaptation, Carrie (2013), however.
    • A variety of different actors were considered for the role of Pennywise. Richard Armitage, Kirk Acevedo, Jim Carrey, Willem Dafoe, Johnny Depp, Paul Giamatti, Jackie Earle Haley, Tom Hiddleston, Doug Jones, Channing Tatum, and Hugo Weaving were among the finalists before Will Poulter was cast. After an extended stay in Development Hell, Poulter left due to scheduling conflicts and Ben Mendelsohn was offered the role only to turn it down due to salary conflicts. Even Tilda Swinton was offered the role (likely going by the book's Mythology Gag of Pennywise's actual gender of being female), only to turn it down due schedule conflicts.
    • Ty Simpkins was originally slated to play Bill.
    • There was originally a "really disturbing" scene that took place in 17th-century Old Derry — presumably the massacre of the fur traders or the early European settlers — before It took the form of Pennywise, with Skarsgård saying he looked "more" like himself in the scene. The scene was fully shot but didn't make it into the final cut. It's possible the scene will be Refitted for Sequel along with the Black Spot scene.
      • An episode of the podcast Throwing Shade had host Bryan Safi and guest Timothy Simons — who had both auditioned for the role — reading their sides for the scene, where It - who is described as a writhing white worm-like devil lurking by a well — demands that a young settler woman hand over her baby, or he will systematically destroy her life before allowing her to die. Even when it's being read with humor, it sounds like it would have been terrifying.
    • This article mentions that at one point the filmmakers thought to add a scene where It takes the appearance of Freddy Krueger, since this iteration of the story is set in the '80s. However, the director decided against it, saying that it felt almost like an in-joke (both this film and the ANOES franchise are owned by New Line Cinema), and that he wanted to feature fears more in line with childhood traumas and the like. The article's author argues that perhaps he was afraid that an iconic character like Freddy could have overshadowed Pennywise. Ironically, IT ended up as something of a spiritual successor to A Nightmare On Elm Street with that franchise's future uncertain at the time.

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