Stephen King’s ‘It’ Getting Two-Film Adaptation by ‘Jane Eyre’ Director

Published 2 years ago by , Updated February 11th, 2014 at 5:52 am,

it stephen king movie Stephen Kings It Getting Two Film Adaptation by Jane Eyre Director

Warner Bros. has been planning a film adaptation of Stephen King’s 1,138 page novel It for the past three years. The last substantial report on the project was nearly two years ago, with an update from screenwriter David Kajganich (The Invasion, Blood Creek) about the challenge of fitting King’s massive literature into a 2-3 hour movie.

Now, we have word that the project is still lurching forward; however, It (no pun) has taken on a radically new form. King’s source material will now be covered over the course of two films, as co-written and directed by Cary Fukunaga. It’s probably safe to assume that Kajganich’s script draft has been abandoned, at this point.

Fukunaga began his career as a cinematographer, before breaking out as a writer and director with the immigration drama Sin Nombre at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival. The critical success of last year’s Jane Eyre (which Fukunaga also helmed) has propelled the filmmaker to greater things, including a job working on the HBO TV series True Detectives – and now, the task of bringing It to the big screen.

Heat Vision says that Chase Palmer will co-write the It script with Fukunaga; the two are also collaborating on the upcoming No Blood, No Guts, No Glory. Onboard to produce the two-movie venture are such big names as seasoned horror producer Roy Lee (The Ring, Grudge), Dan Lin (Sherlock Holmes), and KatzSmith Production heads Seth Grahame-Smith (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) and David Katzenberg (The Hard Times of RJ Berger).

Cary Fukunaga True Detectives Stephen Kings It Getting Two Film Adaptation by Jane Eyre Director

Cary Fukunaga will direct two movies based on King’s ‘It’

King’s It novel tells the tale of the “Losers Club,” a pack of outcast teens living in Derry, Maine (circa 1957). The “Losers” discover that a vicious, shape-shifting monster – who often takes on the form of a demented clown called Pennywise – is preying on the town’s children. Eventually, the “Losers” seemingly kill the creature – though they swear a pact to reunite, should Pennywise ever come back. Sure enough, some 27 years later, a string of murders in Derry points to the monster’s return. But will painful memories of the past prevent the former friends from joining forces again, in order to destroy Pennywise once and for all?

It was previously adapted into a 3-hour, single-camera, TV mini-series back in 1990. As was pointed out by Kajganich (back when he was working on the project) that the TV version really could not do justice to the more gruesome and adult content of King’s literature. Moreover, Fukunaga will also have the advantage of an extra 1-2 hours of running time to cover the full story material – which is still a pretty daunting task, as the book is split between two parallel-running, intertwining narrative threads (one set in 1957-58, the other 1984-85).

As it were, Warner Bros. already has another movie adaptation of a King novel in the works, which was also previously brought to life in TV mini-series form: The Stand. Similar to ItThe Stand is being overseen by a credible filmmaker (namely, Ben Affleck) and is expected to spread out its respective 1,000 pages of source material over the course of at least two, maybe even three, movies. While the studio definitely loves the built-in “franchise” potential of these King projects, both It and The Stand should benefit (artistically) from not being constricted to a single-movie format.

mia wasikowska jane eyre Stephen Kings It Getting Two Film Adaptation by Jane Eyre Director

Mia Wasikowska in ‘Jane Eyre’

In this writer’s opinion, Fukunaga possesses an eye for impeccable, haunting cinematography (no surprise, given his background) and is a good match to handle King’s book – which is rife with dark melodrama and much of the religious/social commentary that are nowadays known as the author’s bread and butter, when it comes to his horror literature.

As to whether or not most people want to see a two-movie adaptation of It – feel free to debate that as you will, in the comments section.

We will keep you updated on the status of Fukunaga’s It adaptation as the story develops.

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Source: THR

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  1. TIM CURRY better be the clown or it will be a bust!!! I was terrified of IT when I was younger.

  2. I am not sure how well a remake will work. I hope his “eye for impeccable, haunting cinematography” will add to the film, but I agree the whole thing will be difficult to sell without a Pennywise As EVIL at Tim Curry’s. Good Luck!

    • “It” is by far the most terrifying book I have ever read. It will be a great movie if they do the book justice. I also consider “The Stand” to be one of the best books I’ve ever read. Unfortunately the TV versions of both of these masterpieces were sad attempts. I really hope the big screen versions, with today’s amazing computer generated graphics, can capture the horror and fantastic images in King’s works.

  3. I was 22 when IT came on TV on 1990 and it scared the living bejesus out of me. I think they are making a mistake redoing it. It was plenty scary enough the first time.

  4. Tim Curry as Pennywise is a MUST.

  5. The book was great… the miniseries was awful. I hope the movie treats it a little more serious.

    And… this is the one time I would be perfectly ok with them completely changing the ending.

    • I definittely agree with you about the ending. First, I was never a big fan of the giant-spider/turtle thing at the end and I know that wasn’t what IT was but I would rather they show something more menacing. And plus, I’m pretty sure they won’t include the controversial scene between the kids and Beverly.

      • Yeah, I’m betting the kiddie train won’t happen.

        • The part with Patrick Hockstetter and Henry Bowers also won’t make it. Which is good, but I still want to see Patrick get eaten by the flying leech things.

      • Actually he WAS a giant alien spider monster.

        I hope they keep that scene in, the book pushed boundaries of horror, I hope the movie will at least attempt to do the same.

        I hope it gets an nc-17 rating.

  6. To whom it may concern;
    I am an active avid fan of Mr. Stephen King both in book and film.
    I look forward to a new remake of the book and movie “IT”. Thanking
    you in advance for your time and consideration allowing me to make
    these comments.

  7. that book is pretty awesome…with all the crappy horror movies they make these days this could be great. If they made a high(ish) budget, two part series of that book it would be hard for chenobyl diaries 2 or apollo 24 to match up against.

    “they all float down here”

  8. The mini series was pretty damn good, but wasn’t anywhere near as scary as it should have been. I look forward to it being developed into a “real” movie. Hopefully they will do it justice.

  9. FINALLY, someone saw sense. Least it will have a fighting chance to be good instead of the wreck it would have been for one, 2 hour movie.

  10. Curry was great but having him do this again would be counter-productive. There are plenty of good actors who could pull the role off as effectively as Tim Curry.

  11. I think that a 2-part movie will be great. I think that the main issue that people have when there is a book-to-movie adaptation is how much of the book is left out of the movie. With a book as long as this one, even doing a 2 part movie might not be enough!

  12. oh HELL YES! add The Talisman to this list (due out any time now, since 1985!) and you have my three favourite SK books made in the space of a couple years.

    that said, it’ll probably not happen.

    • Loved that book, I almost cried when Wolf died.

  13. I f****** LOVED the mini series – my mom played this for me and all of my siblings when we were little and it scared EVERYONE. I’m seriously terrified of storm drains and clowns to this day.

  14. I was 37 when the movie came out. Yup, especially for a TV movie, it was creepy as hell. Whoever plays Pennywise will really have to go some to beat Tim Curry. LOVE Stephen King!!

  15. Thanks for creeping me out with the top photo Sandy. Since Poltergeist Clowns scare me. ;)
    2 parts is the way to go with IT. But I worry that the studio may want a PG-13 version to justify the cost of making the movies. And that just won’t work. IT is one of those rare books that actually scared me while reading it and a proper adaptation will require an R rating IMO.

    • Nc-17 I hope. I excpect an R though.

      Pg-13 would be a joke.

  16. I’m willing to give it a chance but it will be hard to top Tim Curry’s performance. Any casting spoilers out there?

  17. I’m sorry, but I don’t believe Mr. King’s novel merits two movies, much a remake of an already well-done miniseries. Whoever they get to play Pennywise could nt ;possibly equal the performance of Tim Curry. Hollywood, when are you going to have an original idea???!!!

    • You’re right, it would probably do better with 3 movies to truly capture it. ;)

      The miniseries wasn’t very good…. if you read the book that is. Even though I thought Tim Curry was nearly perfect.

  18. i think it would be great both books were my favorite of course the toer series were pretty good as well. yes if tim curry can do he was a very good n scary pennywise

  19. I hope the “new” versions stays close to the book. I have been disappointed lately with screen or film writers taking liberties and straying far a field from the book (especially a good book).

  20. As to IT, there is room for improvement over the pretty good TV version. But the TV version of The Stand will be hard to beat–great cast, script, visuals. Hope they don’t go too over the top with special effects–it’s the story, the characters, that are so important. It would be so easy to turn it into a high-tech nightmare.

  21. Nevermind It. Nevermind The Stand. I want The Dark Tower dammit!!!

    • I truly love the idea of a remake, but yeah the Dark Tower needs to be done if they cand do those stupid Happy Clotter, or Harry Potter books the dark tower series can be done

      • While he is no Stephen King…what about the Blackstone Chronicles by John Saul? That would be totally worthy of a big screen adaptation too.

        As for IT, loved the original (except for the silly Spider). But, I am ok with a remake as long as Tim Curry gets to be Pennywise again. For me, no one else can take his place.

  22. I loved the book and the mini series. I cant wait for this to come out!!

  23. I hope they don’t make the same reference to use of a bic lighter or the term nerd that Mr. King did. I don’t think they were present in 1956 but I sure enjoyed the read.

    • Stephen King grew up in the 50s, I feel like he would know better than most.

  24. Yet again , they make a movie that has already been made , albeit a miniseries. Make a movie about someting , anything that has not already been done. The Harry Potter movies got it right , in that they made them in a time line so that each movie jived with had come before it. Ridley Scott screwed up with Promethis. If you have doubts , watch Alien and Aliens 2 .

    • You know they got those from books, right? So ,still not original.

    • Sometimes things need to be re-made when the first attempt was crappy. IT is one of those times.

      Prometheus was a prequel not a sequel.

  25. I read the book when i was in 6th grade and it scared the living crap out of me and i watched the movie when i finished the book and i thought the movie was horrible it was very boring and not scary at all this movie can be very good I hope to be seeing something a whole lot better than a turd with tim curry on it.

  26. I am so sick and tired of hearing that anyone is making a movie that has already been done. When anyone does that , they are saying outright , that they have no imagination. Since these people lack real imagination , then why not remake all the Harry Potter movies ?

    • What’s your deal with Harry Potter?

    • I agree, most re-makes are s*** because the original version was already good. In this case, the original IT was a poor attempt. Re-making it is good because they will hopefully do a better job.

      The Harry Potter films were fine the first time, they don’t need to be re-made.

  27. Get Tim Burton or Wes Craven to direct IT.

    If Heath Ledger was still around he would do a pretty good Pennywise..
    Christopher Walkin I think would be okay and I’m thinking if you get
    Burton have Johnny Depp take a stab at Pennywise… I’m starting to think
    that there isn’t anything that man can’t do.

    If he wasn’t so old I would say Jack Nicholson would do a KILLER job… and heck with all the make-up I’m thinking his age wouldn’t matter…

    • Burton hasn’t made a good movie since Mars attack which wasn’t that amazing. Fukunaga is one of the best young directors in the business. Sin nombre and Jan Eyre s*** on anything Burton has made.

  28. ^^^
    No way at the thought of Burton doing this movie. Anything but that.

  29. Actually it was “The Dead Zone” that spooked me out. And “Firestarter”.