Coulrophobiacs, look away now – it looks like Pennywise is here to stay.
After It raked in one of the biggest openings for a horror film in modern box office history, the cogs are now firmly in motion on a sequel to the well-received 2017 adaptation of Stephen King’s It. Here’s what we know so far about It: Chapter Two, from release date to casting details.
- The movie’s epic runtime has been revealed.
- A brand new trailer for the movie has been released.
- The film’s screenwriter confirms two key moments from the original book will feature in the movie.
- Jessica Chastain says one scene “might have the most blood in horror movie history”.
- Director Andy Muschietti confirms filming has wrapped.
- Warner Bros. has released the first teaser poster for It: Chapter Two.
- It: Chapter Two is definitely the final chapter – it won’t be a trilogy.
Spoilers for It are posted below
When is It: Chapter Two being released?
It: Chapter Two will be released on September 6, 2019.
Is there a trailer for It: Chapter Two?
Yes! A brand new trailer, billed as the final teaser for the film, has been released today (July 18). The clip shows a preview of the grown-up Losers Club battling evil old Pennywise, who is heard ominously saying: “For 27 years, I dreamed of you. I craved you. I missed you.”
This clip follows on from the official teaser trailer, which arrived back in May and was suitably terrifying.
“Evil resurfaces in Derry as director Andy Muschietti reunites the Losers Club—young and adult—in a return to where it all began with It Chapter Two,” reads an accompanying description.
The trailer appeared on May 7 as promised after IT author Stephen King had made this announcement:
Looking forward to IT CHAPTER 2? You should be. I've seen it, and it's terrific. The trailer is coming Thursday, at noon. You'll float.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) May 7, 2019
The first footage to be publicly screened was done so at CinemaCon in April – and it was described as suitably unsettling.
Shown only to fans at the event, the footage reportedly shows Beverly returning to her family home as an adult, where she learns that her father has since passed away. The new owner of the house is an elderly woman named Mrs Kersh – and long-time fans will almost certainly remember her from the books.
As she’s invited in for tea, Beverly feels increasingly uneasy as she sees old family photos that are beginning to resemble Pennywise. “You know what they say about Derry — no one who dies here ever really dies,” Mrs Kerch creepily grins.
What is It: Chapter Two‘s runtime?
Those looking forward to seeing It: Chapter 2 might want to grab a quick power nap before heading to the cinema this coming September as it clocks in at two hours and 45 minutes.
Confirming the news to Digital Spy, director Andy Muschietti said of the extensive runtime: “Nobody who’s seen the movie has had any complaint.” He then revealed that the movie’s original edit spanned four hours.
“At the beginning, when you’re writing and building the beats of the story, everything that you put in there seems very essential to the story,” Muschietti explained. “However, when you have the movie finally edited and it’s four hours long, you realise that some of the events and some of the beats can be easily lifted but the essence of the story remains intact.”
He continued: “You cannot deliver a four-hour movie because people will start to feel uncomfortable — no matter what they see — but we ended up having a movie that is two hours and 45 minutes, and the pacing is very good.”
Has It: Chapter Two finished filming?
Yes! Director Andy Muschietti confirmed on November 1 that filming had been completed, writing on Instagram: “It’s a wrap!”
In a follow-up post, Muschietti mused on what the experience of filming IT 2 had been like.
“IT chapter Two was an 86-day roller coaster ride. Never had so much fun making movies as this one,” he wrote. “I had a relentless and inspired crew who believed in this adventure as much as I did, and a cast that put their heart and soul behind every second of performance. A huge thank you to all of them and also to my producer and sister @barbaramus who dealt with all the shit that a production like this has reserved for producers. And last but not least, the fans who day-by-day boosted our spirits by reminding us how much this story means to them. Thank you and Love to you all.”
That post signalled the end of just under five months of filming. Back on June 19, James McAvoy confirmed that production had started with a post on Instagram: “DAY 1 on IT 2,” he captioned the snap. It didn’t give much more away than that though, with McAvoy focusing on his on-set snack of choice: a Dairylea cheese triangle.
Then, on September 3, Muschietti shared a (fake) blood-splattered photo with Jessica Chastain to confirm that she’d finished shooting all of her scenes for the film.
Muschietti, who helmed the first It, is directing from a script penned by IT co-writer Gary Dauberman.
What’s going to happen in It: Chapter Two?
Naturally, as the new film is being adapted from a book that was first published in 1986, we already know what happens at the end of Stephen King’s bloody-long novel. But, for those not in the loop, here’s a quick guide to the expected premise of It: Chapter Two (so, yeah, here come some spoilers).
After defeating Pennywise in the first chapter, the group agree to return to Derry, Maine should the shape-shifting ghoul ever return to their hometown. In a post-credits scene, we hear Pennywise’s maniacal laugh – confirming that the monster has survived the kids’ beating.
Lo and behold, It returns 27 years later (2016) to pick off the next generation of kids in Derry – meaning that the original kids, who are now all grown up, have to stay true to their word and take on It all over again.
As adults, most of the OG Losers’ Club have moved away from Derry, forged careers, got married and more by the time of IT: Chapter Two – all of which play crucial parts in the book’s plot, such as Beverly’s relationship with her abusive husband Tom and the introduction of Bill’s partner Audra.
Speaking to Syfy in September 2017, Muschietti revealed that the film would also incorporate the character Maturin – an ancient turtle and the antithesis of It.
“I think in the second part, the turtle will try to help them. In the second movie, the turtle left a few clues to their childhood that they don’t remember,” he disclosed. “They have to retrieve those memories from the summer of 1989, and that’s how we jump back to 1989. The keys to defeating Pennywise are left in the past, and as adults, they don’t remember.”
It’s also been revealed that the film will feature the ‘Jade of the Orient’ scene from Stephen King’s original book.
In the novel, the Losers’ Club reunite for the first time as they enjoy a succulent Chinese meal at the Jade of the Orient restaurant. At the end of the dinner, they each receive a fortune cookie which contains a terrifying personalised prize – and it’s the first sign that Pennywise will make his return.
“The Jade of the Orient is such a defining and iconic scene in the book. That was something I remember as a thing I was writing towards”, screenwriter Gary Dauberman told SlashFilm in September. “It was like, ‘Okay, coming up is Jade of the Orient. That’s going to be super cool’. It was a nice signpost to write towards, which I dug.”
We also know that It’s true form will be revealed in the sequel’s climatic showdown. But, given the underwhelming efforts of the 1990 TV/film adaptation, IT: Chapter Two really needs to make sure it’s as terrifying and grim as it’s portrayed in the book.
For the sake of spoilers, we’ll leave the premise here for now – but know this: it’s just as terrifying as the first half.
As you can see above, James McAvoy shared a series of snaps back in June of the adult cast of the Losers’ Club hanging out with some of the children from the previous film – suggesting that there could be flashback sequences in the new movie. Speaking to MTV last year, Muschietti revealed that he wanted to maintain a similar narrative structure as King’s book, which flits between the adult and child eras of The Losers’ Club.
It’s also been confirmed that this It reboot won’t stretch all the way to a trilogy.
“No, this is a complete story,” Dauberman clarified about the narrative purpose of It: Chapter Two. “The ending I think will satisfy the audience and maybe break their hearts a little bit.”
It seems like things are going to get seriously gory too. Jessica Chastain chatted about the film onJimmy Fallon last night and said one scene might have the most blood in horror movie history.
“I’m going to say something and I think I’m gonna be in trouble but I’m gonna do it. It might be a spoiler, but in the movie there’s a scene…someone said on set that it’s the most blood that’s ever been in a horror film…in a scene,” she explained.
“The next day I was pulling blood out of my eyeballs.”
Last year, director Andy Muschietti also posted a photo that saw Chastain hugging him while covered in blood. We can only assume that these things are linked…
In May, screenwriter Gary Dauberman confirmed that two more scenes from the original book would be featured in the movie. In the novel, a young gay man called Adrian Mellon is beaten by a group of kids in a hate crime and then killed by Pennywise. That scene will appear in It: Chapter 2, with Dauberman calling it “an iconic scene in the book.”
“It is the first attack in present-day Derry and sets the stage for what Derry has become,” he told The Hollywood Reporter. “It is the influence of Pennywise even while he is hibernating, and it’s pure evil what happens to Adrian. These bullies working through Pennywise was important for us to show.”
Dauberman also revealed the sequel would feature the domestic abuse storyline involving Beverly Marsh (Jessica Chastain).
Who’s going to be in It: Chapter Two?
We’re in for a whole new cast. As mentioned It: Chapter Two will tackle the book’s final part, which is set 27 years later as the group return to Derry as adults.
The full cast for It: Chapter Two has now been confirmed. In terms of the adult Losers’ Club, James McAvoy will play Bill Denbrough, Jessica Chastain is Beverly Marsh, and Jay Ryan is Ben Hanscom. Bill Hader will play Richie Tozier, Isaiah Mustafa is Mike Hanlon, James Ransone will play Eddie Kaspbrak, and – finally! – Andy Bean is taking on the role of Stanley Uris.
— IT Chapter Two ?? (@ITMovieOfficial) July 2, 2018
Chastain confirmed her casting with an Instagram post back in June, confirming that a) she’d started filming her scenes for It: Chapter Two and b) that she was on set in Toronto, Canada.
Chastain also shared some cool fan art back in July – the doctored image, which you can see below, shows her grown-up iteration of Beverly Marsh being contrasted against IT actress Sophia Lillis’ depiction of the character.
We’ve also had a first look at the mature Losers’ Club in action on set. The snaps, which were taken back in August, show Chastain and McAvoy joining the rest of the gang as they film a scene in costume.
Beep beep pic.twitter.com/sWbsOBagtU
— Chris Evangelista (@cevangelista413) July 30, 2018
Fan Theory: the guy in the shorts is Pennywise. Let me explain 1/346 pic.twitter.com/tnZOgqj8Ax
— Chris Evangelista (@cevangelista413) July 31, 2018
More new additions to the cast have also been announced. Xavier Dolan will play Adrian Mellon, a Derry man who is in a relationship with Don Hagarty. In the book, Adrian is thrown off a bridge by homophobic teenagers, leaving him at the mercy of Pennywise. Will Beinbrink, meanwhile, will play Beverley’s abusive husband Tom Rogan.
Pennywise, meanwhile, is definitely going to return to wreak havoc on Derry, Maine once again. Bill Skarsgård, the man who underwent the transformation into the terrifying clown for the first film, has been confirmed to return.
In September, the first pictures of Skarsgård in character on set in Toronto emerged. Despite being in daylight, Skarsgård’s demonic Pennywise still looks completely terrifying as he sits on the shoulder of, erm, a giant effigy of lumberjack character Paul Bunyan.
— Edward (@_HelloEdward_) August 31, 2018
Good morning, Twitter. Here's a set photo from IT: CHAPTER TWO featuring Dat Boi Pennywise perched on Paul Bunyan's shoulder like a goddamn parrot. pic.twitter.com/2d510HlJze
— Visionary Director Scott Wampler™ (@ScottWamplerBMD) September 3, 2018
Speaking about the cast of the new movie, Skarsgård said: “It’s going to be a very different experience this time around, just given the fact that you have all of these incredible, seasoned actors to play against – as opposed to having all the kids.
“It’s going to be a different experience, for sure… but I’m looking forward to it.”