Bill Skarsgård returns as Pennywise in IT Chapter Two, even after having nightmares of the dancing clown after he finished filming IT. The sequel to the 2017 critical and financial hit, Warner Bros. is once again experiencing success in adapting Stephen King's properties. Picking up 27 years after the events of IT, the sequel shows the adult versions of the Losers' Club return to Derry to fight Pennywise once again.
With the varying perspectives that the two IT movies offer, Pennywise has been the most prominent character to be in both films. After terrifying audiences with his portrayal in the first film, Skarsgård has once again worked his magic to make Pennywise just as scary in IT Chapter Two. The success of both films has already made Pennywise one of Skarsgård's most recognizable roles, which is saying something given all the makeup and prosthetics he's covered with. But, Pennywise is terrifying all the same, and even continued to haunt Skarsgård after filming the first movie.
He first talked about his haunting Pennywise nightmares in an interview with EW last year, where he talked about his experience on IT playing the deadly clown and the lasting impact it had on his life. He first compared playing Pennywise to being in a destructive relationship, where someone is miserable without even knowing it. As depressing as that may sound, Skarsgård found a sense of relief after wrapping knowing that he was done with the role. While speaking to CBR recently though, he talked about what these dreams were like.
"The dreams were nonsensical. I had dreams at times where I was Pennywise walking around Stockholm, and I was like, 'They can't see me like this' I was upset. 'They can't see me just walking around with the makeup on. It ruins the mystery.' I was walking around, upset about that, embarrassing myself. And then there were other dreams where I was watching Pennywise, separate to me."
Skarsgård is likely not alone in having nightmares of Pennywise, but while such dreams could scare most, he found them to be somewhat pleasant. He's described the nightmare process as part of him letting go of Pennywise, if only for a certain amount of time. Now that he has returned to the role for IT Chapter Two, it is unclear whether or not similar Pennywise nightmares haunted him again. The ones he most recently detailed could be referencing his original experience. If they did though and his experience with them was the same, then this time Skarsgård may actually be able to get closure on playing the clown.
There are currently no official plans for the franchise to continue in any form, but that could change as long as IT Chapter Two performs well at the box-office - which it has so far. For the sake of Skarsgård's psyche though, it may be better in the long run if he doesn't have to keep returning to this dark place and having these dreams. He's hardly the first actor to get engrained in the mindset of a villainous clown - with Joaquin Phoenix doing it most recently for Joker - and it can certainly take a toll on them. Skarsgård's future as Pennywise is ultimately up to him though, and he has said recently that he'd be open to returning if the story is good. Regardless of his future, there is no doubt that Skarsgård chillingly brought Pennywise to life in both IT movies.