James McAvoy and Bill Hader are in talks to join the IT: Chapter 2 cast, with Jessica Chastain playing the grown-up version of Beverly Marsh in the film. Last year’s IT movie was a runaway critical and commercial success for Warner Bros., taking in a record-breaking amount at the box office ($700 million worldwide) for an R-rated horror film. IT was also designed to serve as the first installment in a two-part adaptation of Stephen King’s original best-selling horror novel. Chapter 2 will focus on the latter half of the source material, picking up with the members of the Losers’ Club as adults 27 years after their first battle with Pennywise the Dancing Clown aka. IT.
Bill Skarsgård is set to return as Pennywise in the second IT movie, with Andy Muschietti once again directing from an adapted script written by Gary Dauberman. Chastain previously collaborated with Muschietti on the supernatural horror film Mama and was the favorite to play the grownup Beverly in IT: Chapter 2 even before the news became semi-official. The Oscar-nominee has even been featured in multiple IT: Chapter 2 fan trailers at this stage, along with other fan-favorite picks to play the adult Losers in the sequel.
It now appears that Chastain won’t be the only A-lister actor playing a Loser in the second IT movie, either. Variety is reporting that McAvoy and Hader are lining up to play the adult versions of Bill Denbrough and Richie Tozier in IT: Chapter 2. The characters were portrayed as kids in the first IT movie by Jaeden Lieberher and Finn Wolfhard, both of whom are expected to return along with the other young Losers’ Club actors in Chapter 2 via flashbacks. Muschietti teased their return in a recent social media update alluding to the start of production on IT: Chapter 2, but Variety‘s sources are cautioning that a deal is still being worked out on that front.
IT: Chapter 2 will pick up in 2016, as the now forty-something Losers come to realize that Pennywise has resurfaced and they must all return to Derry, Maine, in order to battle and hopefully defeat him at last. In King’s original novel, Bill grows up to become a horror writer still traumatized by what happened to his brother Georgie all those years before. Richie, meanwhile, now works as a disc jockey in Los Angeles, his smart aleck attitude and penchant for foul-mouthed humor still mostly intact.
McAvoy, Hader, and Chastain all previously appeared together in Ned Benson’s perspective-switching drama experiment The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Him, Her & Them. Chastain and McAvoy are also costarring in this fall’s X-Men: Dark Phoenix, whereas Hader can currently be seen in HBO’s acclaimed hitman comedy/drama TV series Barry. IT producer Roy Lee has confirmed that Chapter 2 aims to begin filming in July, so it shouldn’t be long before the remaining four adult Losers are found. So far though, the film is doing a bang-up job with casting in that department.
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