If there’s one thing that approaches the Internet’s collective fear of spiders, it’s the Internet’s collective fear of clowns. Seemingly sparked primarily by Tim Curry’s iconic performance as Pennywise in the 1990 miniseries adaptation of Stephen King’s IT, evil clown memes dot the online landscape, supplying countless instances of nightmare fuel for the unsuspecting people who encounter them. While the aforementioned Pennywise has rarely been seriously challenged for the title of the horror genre’s most terrifyingly malevolent clown, Dimension Films and producer Eli Roth (Cabin Fever, The Green Inferno) are currently preparing to unleash a new challenger for that distinction into theaters, in the form of the film simply titled: Clown.

Shot in late-2012, Clown — the tale of a father who puts on what he thinks is a normal clown suit in order to entertain at his son’s birthday party, only to then not be able to get it off  — has traveled a bumpy road to get to wide theatrical release, with writers Jon Watts and Christopher Ford first coming up with the idea in 2010. The duo then took the unusual step of creating a fake trailer for the project, even naming Roth as a producer, despite him having nothing to do with the film at the time. Impressed by their guts and the quality of the mock trailer, Roth eventually came aboard as a producer for real, with Watts — director of Marvel’s upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming — handling directorial duties.

The new trailer above replicates the original one pretty closely. This time, however, it is meant to help market an actual film that’s already been made with noticeably better production values and more seasoned actors. In fact, the cast includes the recognizable face of Peter Stormare (Fargo, Arrow) as well as Laura Allen of the short-lived television series Terriers and Awake

Eli Roth Clown Clown Trailer: Birthdays Are No Laughing Matter

Despite being a Canadian-American production, Clown first received distribution in Europe, hitting Italy in late-2014 and the UK in early-2015. Countries such as Germany, the Philippines and Mexico have since played host to the film as well. Finally, after sitting on Dimension’s shelf for over three years, Clown arrives in the U.S. next month. The studio has never publicly addressed why they chose to put off the film’s stateside release for so long, although conventional wisdom suggests bad prospects for movies that get delayed for years only to finally emerge out into the world, especially when it comes to horror films.

That said, Dimension delaying Clown doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be bad. For instance, Warner Bros. shelved the Bryan Singer-produced Halloween-themed anthology flick Trick ‘r Treat for nearly two years, before quietly dumping it to Blu-ray in 2009. Despite this shabby treatment, the film was a hit with both genre fans and critics, and a sequel is currently in the works. Is Clown destined to become the next cult horror phenomenon to rise from the ashes after studio neglect? It’s too early to tell, but at least moviegoers will finally soon be able to make that judgment for themselves.

Clown arrives in U.S. theaters on June 17, 2016.

Source: Dimension Films

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