Update on Stephen King’s ‘It’ Remake

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Lilja: You are also working on a remake of IT, how did that happen?

David Kajganich: When I heard Warner Bros. was going to give the novel a go theatrically, I went after the job hard. I knew the studio was committed to adapting IT as a single film, so I went back and reread the novel to see if I thought this was even possible, and to try to find a structure that would accommodate such a large number of characters in two different time periods, around 120 pages, which was another of the studio’s stipulations.

Had I not worked with the producers before, I might have been more tentative about trying to pull off such a massive undertaking, but I’d worked with Dan Lin, Roy Lee, and Doug Davison on our original version of The Invasion, and I knew they would fight for good storytelling, and would also give me the time I needed to work out a solid first draft, which they did. They really went to bat for that. We’ve done some tinkering with it and I am just about to turn that draft in to the studio, so we’ll soon know a lot more.

Lilja: What will be different in your version of IT compared to the TV series?

David Kajganich: I think the biggest difference is that we’re working with about two-thirds the onscreen time they had for the miniseries. That sounds dire, I know, but it doesn’t necessarily mean two-thirds the amount of story. I’m finding as many ways as I can to make certain scenes redundant by deepening and doubling others. To me, this is an interesting process because it has the effect of thematically intensifying the whole, but it can lead to dramatic surprises. Certain scenes I thought would be crucial to the coherence of the whole ended up cut, while other scenes, which were somewhat cursory in the book, ended up being pivotal in the script.

I know I’m being vague, but there’s not a lot I can tell you at this point about the specifics, since we’re still very much in development on it. I’ll just say for now that we’re really swinging for the fences.

Lilja: I guess it’s pretty hard to translate such a massive book to a movie.

David Kajganich: It’s been an enormous challenge, yes, but the rewards for me as a writer have been just as big. I’ve looked at every word of the book many times and I’ve spent months working with the text, uncovering all of the connections and nuances. In a way, it’s like taking a look inside Stephen King’s head, which is fascinating. Needless to say, I’ve learned a lot about story-telling, and from a master.

But I know how collaborative the filmmaking process is, and how many cooks will soon begin coming into the kitchen, so I’m really trying to enjoy being in this world more or less alone for the moment.

SOURCE: Lilja’s Library/Film

Lilja: You are also working on a remake of IT, how did that happen?

David Kajganich: When I heard Warner Bros. was going to give the novel a go theatrically, I went after the job hard. I knew the studio was committed to adapting IT as a single film, so I went back and reread the novel to see if I thought this was even possible, and to try to find a structure that would accommodate such a large number of characters in two different time periods, around 120 pages, which was another of the studio’s stipulations.

Had I not worked with the producers before, I might have been more tentative about trying to pull off such a massive undertaking, but I’d worked with Dan Lin, Roy Lee, and Doug Davison on our original version of The Invasion, and I knew they would fight for good storytelling, and would also give me the time I needed to work out a solid first draft, which they did. They really went to bat for that. We’ve done some tinkering with it and I am just about to turn that draft in to the studio, so we’ll soon know a lot more.

Lilja: What will be different in your version of IT compared to the TV series?

David Kajganich: I think the biggest difference is that we’re working with about two-thirds the onscreen time they had for the miniseries. That sounds dire, I know, but it doesn’t necessarily mean two-thirds the amount of story. I’m finding as many ways as I can to make certain scenes redundant by deepening and doubling others. To me, this is an interesting process because it has the effect of thematically intensifying the whole, but it can lead to dramatic surprises. Certain scenes I thought would be crucial to the coherence of the whole ended up cut, while other scenes, which were somewhat cursory in the book, ended up being pivotal in the script.

I know I’m being vague, but there’s not a lot I can tell you at this point about the specifics, since we’re still very much in development on it. I’ll just say for now that we’re really swinging for the fences.

Lilja: I guess it’s pretty hard to translate such a massive book to a movie.

David Kajganich: It’s been an enormous challenge, yes, but the rewards for me as a writer have been just as big. I’ve looked at every word of the book many times and I’ve spent months working with the text, uncovering all of the connections and nuances. In a way, it’s like taking a look inside Stephen King’s head, which is fascinating. Needless to say, I’ve learned a lot about story-telling, and from a master.

But I know how collaborative the filmmaking process is, and how many cooks will soon begin coming into the kitchen, so I’m really trying to enjoy being in this world more or less alone for the moment.

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Comments
46 Responses to “Update on Stephen King’s ‘It’ Remake”
  1. SJ says:

    Sounds crap. I wrote a better adaptation and I hope to approach producers with it next year.

  2. Paul B says:

    Yeah. Right.

  3. Rob says:

    Does this mean he cutting out the scene where all the eleven year old characters gang bang in the sewer?

    • Alexandre says:

      AHuahuahauhauhauahuaha epic

    • mxl says:

      ha, yah probably… and i doubt we’ll be seeing henry and the boys lighting their farts on fire… or will we?!

      • Airra says:

        dude, you forgot to mention Hockstetter rubbin his thing and Bower’s at the same time!!!!
        hahaha!! Go henry and patrick!!
        But you know what, crazy as he is (Patrick), I felt pity over his character in the book because of what Pennywise did to him but then again, he murdered his own brother so I guess he really deserved being killed gruesomely.
        I felt bad for all of the kids who died, disappeared and eaten in the book.

      • Reymart says:

        Haha. In one of the article I’ve read about the remake of it, it is possible that they would put it back in for this movie. The movie, as what the producers and the possible directors said in an interview that they would make it two movies. one will be for the kids few years back. and the second one will be for the grown ups already. and yeah, Henry’s will be shown to. racism and all that. but, HELL! wan’t to see Hockstetter and Bower doin that thing yayay! haha.

  4. Shane says:

    Please do not fuck this movie up,it deserves perfection

  5. baqir says:

    SOOOOOOOOOOOOOUNDS GREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAT

  6. Dayakar says:

    I agree with Shane, IT if it is a remake it has to be fucking amazing. Not cheap actors and retarded swearing and pornographic images with touches of gore, thats pretty much what Horror is in Hollywood today. We need Stephen King brilliance not Saw shit.

    And if its possible, please get Tim Curry as IT.

    • Cody M says:

      I think it would be best to not cast Tim Curry as Pennywise. It would sway viewers towards the previously made movie and not the story as told in the book. Also, Pennywise from the book is much different than Tim Curry’s version, so a different actor would suit the part better. Either way I am super excited to see this film when it’s finally finished.

      • mxl says:

        every king book i try and use mickey rourke as the villian. it worked best in the stand and under the dome and as im re-reading It in anticipation for this remake, i think rourke would do justice. the voice just fits in great so far. so if youre re-reading yourself try him out. no randal flag but much creepier than tim f’ing curry.

      • Anonymous says:

        Tim Curry killed pennywise. The only difference from Bob Gray’s appearance in the movie was that Tim didn’t have Orange fluffy hair and a gray suit.

      • TimcurryFAN says:

        No one can play pennywise like TIM CURRY. He made that movie! People are still scared of clowns to this day because of him flawless performance. Without him, I’d consider Johnny Depp, or dont bother! The movie won’t even make it to a crappy midday movie on TV. =/

  7. alby says:

    look him.
    they need the edge of his eyes, an expressive mouth and an insane artistic talent to proof how much the character of pennywise can terrify deeply.

    maybe the time they gave to this remake movie sounds like a test for a proposable sequel.
    however director skill ive seen on his past movies is acceptable for scary istant scene..IT doesnt scare for that reason at all.

  8. Mike Ferrer says:

    You better be asking Tim Curry to play as Pennywise. Please dont fuck this movie up with your computer effects… Make it real and believable. It wont take that much extra time, for real.

  9. WES says:

    They better not crap this up! NOO CGI, NOO Crap Actors, and NOOOOO 3D!!!!!

  10. Shiz-ean says:

    I’m someone who saw the campy movie before I read the book. It was half great and half awful, but enough to make me curious about the novel. I think a now older Tim Curry could possibly be even creepier, but am open to someone new as well. I couldn’t agree more with the other comments about no cgi. PLEASE no cgi, unnecessary gore/porn, and horrible modern popular actors. This needs to be as scary as the book, I dont want to see some kid from an adam sandler flick/disney actor taking his first stab at a horror flick to draw crowds. The awesome story is alreay written, now its time to bring that same feel to the big screen without filler or shock factor.

  11. Airra says:

    Yeah, Mickey Rourke could do but Tim Curry is still the one for me… I hope they make the remake longer or if not, they should just make it a 2-part movie so that they won’t leave the essentials behind. And please, include the clubhouse and the house on neibolt street. It’s ok if they don’t include the “sex scenes” in the drains/sewers but i hope they include the eggs wherein Ben have stomped every one of it and when Bill and Richie have entered the deadlights and were battling IT through their minds. Last but not the least, please include Mike’s story about the big bird.
    Anyway, I loved the movie though. Even if they left important gists of the story and have replaced Ben’s mummy as Stan’s mummy. I still loved it..

  12. Martin McKeever says:

    Tim Curry, as a Brit, lifted the show above the usual made for TV trash. So only a brit can save this remake. David Mitchell or Jimmy Carr are to me the only ones who can replace him.

    • Anonymous says:

      Jimmy Carr? What have u been smoking!

    • Sarah says:

      You’re a complete moron. Only a brit can take on the role? Wise up. True, Tim Curry was about the only good thing in the original, not because he was a brit, but because of his talent. That doesnt come from where you’re born or where you grow up, you dipshit.

      • Martin McKeever says:

        i’m just saying, brits always make great villains in US films: gary oldman, anthony hopkins, brian cox, malcolm mcdowell, christian bale, robert carlyle, ian mcshane, david warner etc

  13. Is there going to be any more updates soon? This movie has a lot of potential if they do it right. I can just picture Mike Hanlon standing still looking up covered in the shadow of that giant bird.

  14. adz'knight says:

    this is gonna be a hard task to get such a terrifying novel onto the big screen. It needs to be pretty much like all the above have commented on, no lame 3D, limited CGI, leave out pointless porn & swearing references, get some decent actors and deliver this film like the book, dark & frightening. I want Hollywood to make a scary film for once, the gore is fine but you need the pschological factor if you really want to control your audience. To be honest it probly needs to be in 2 films as well. Good luck….i’ll be patiently waiting! ! !

    • Anonymous says:

      I wish they will tell us more but it has been like 2 years when they first started talking about it and im kinda thinking if they are even going to do the film.?

  15. Stan says:

    Any update on this? I really hope it happens, but I’m worried.. I mean, 1000 pages into a 2 hour film? It could be a flop.

  16. Dan says:

    For some reason, I’m feeling like Bill Irwin could make a good Pennywise. He was definitely creepy on CSI.

  17. I wanna see the part when the kid gets eaten by The Creature From The Black Lagoon or when that kid is describing to older Bill that his friends saw Jaws beach its self and tried to eat him. Classic. FUCKING GREAT BOOK.

  18. if you guys are going to remake it, i think for one thing, that you guys should make pennywise look over 100 times scarier than what he looked like in the original, and that is not a figure of speech, i think you guys should make the new it so scary, that it will be NC-17 rated, meaning that it would be so scary that only adults can see it, not only because of the blood and gore, and violence, but for that to. and i think you guys should make the blood and gore look 100% real. and put alot of porn scenes in it. show beverly marsh and billie when there kids, having teen sex together. and show them completely naked. and when they have sex, show the hole entire thing. dont skip it. show them get really really nasty with each other. okay, back to were i was, i also think that you guys should make pennywise, come in different people forms, make them look really,really,really,really creepy. make them look like serial killers.

    • Tyler says:

      I agreed with everything up until you said they should put the gang bang scene in it, their fucking kids for christs sake, sicko! Besides I think child porn is ilegal fake or not. For you to say “show them get really really nasty with each other” is fucked up, they were like 12 in the book when that took place, go put yourslef into a mental hospital before you sexualy essault some little girl or boy you nut job!!!!!

      So on a serious note, I hope they do remake the movie, make Pennywise 100% scarier and yeah, have fun :)

  19. add some different parts in the remake that even the book didnt have in it. have pennywise come in the form of a creepy looking hillbilly freak. that looks like he would kill and eat people. and when you guys show pennywise kill and eat the kids, show the hole thing, show him mutilate and eat the kids. and show blood,gore and all. put extreme violence in it.

  20. wayne r says:

    i think it will fuck everything up if they make a remake it will not be the same as the original so hope it never happens

    • Tyler says:

      I think it would be really interesting to see a theatrical version of ‘IT’. It would be alot more gorier than the original, do to the fact that it was a TV mini series therefore didn’t have alot of gore. Alot of times doing a remake does ruin it, for example, The Karate Kid, or the upcoming Footloose, but I feel in this case it will work :)

  21. for a remake to be done right, it would need the screen play would need to be written the way that Lord Of The Rings was- as a trilogy or at least in 2 parts. There is no other way to truly do justice to the story. So much was left out of the original film version, mostly back story showing the pattern of death in the town, and it was all important so that you understood that the “spider” under the town wasn’t just Pennywise, or the wolf-man, or the father…. it was something unnatural to our existence. The only way to truly build up the idea that it was there under Derry long before anyone else, was to show some of the back stories.

  22. Miller says:

    Gotta put the part where eddie spaggetti see’s the guy with lepperacy under the porch offering blow jobs for a dime…creepy as shit!!!…and when the boy at the start of the book (its been a while since I read it) see’s a clown under the bridge and millions of bloons come out from under the bridge…Do not make this a cheesy remake…stick close to what king did…he knows scary…when I went to see nightmare on elm st remake in 2010 there were 10 yr olds!!! But they weren’t scarred cause of all the gore they see on tv day to day and gory comics…pennywise would put fear back into the audience.

  23. Anonymous says:

    i agree with whoever said to make it in two parts. harry potter did it with the last book, and it went amazing. they tried to get all of the books in, and they took two parts to make it happen. there are so many parts that have to go into the book– niebolt street, adrian’s murder, the smoke pit, the rock fight, and all of the mutilations that actually happened. none of this “zoom in on the makeup and fake teeth and then cut to the next scene” nonsense. this is one of the most terrifying books ever made, and it needs to be one of the most terrifying movies. i would love to see tim curry reprise his role as pennywise, but there may be new talent out there that would fit the part better. i also don’t like how they’re doing it from bev’s point of view. how are they supposed to see how georgie’s murder affected bill’s family? all we’re going to see is more domestic violence from her side. and changing the time periods is the dumbest thing i’ve ever heard.

  24. bekah says:

    i read the book first and it scared the cr*p out of me, as well as fascinating me at the same time. At times i couldnt put it down, and at other times i just had to as i wouldnt be able to sleep that night!

    So made a point of getting the film out and was severely dissappointed and was laughing at the awful acting, the rubbish affects, n think its cos loads of the book ncharacters were missed out n pennywise was not as scary looking as i created in my head while reading.
    So yeah i agree they have a big job on their hands with the remake n hope they do the book justice! And it will need to be like a three hour legth film if they want to do it in one, i would be happy enough to sit through a film that longif ots done right.
    im gonna go read the book again!

  25. Oliver Wayne Okinawo says:

    It does my heart good to see all these people actually read the book i currently reading it now may have a better insight though seeing as my life revolved around this movie litterally only thing i ever watched was my uncles VHS copy of IT over 1000 times wake up get a glass of koolaid and a straw and watch and be mezmorized.But purtaining to the movie tim curry needs to be in there his voice is the shock and awe that keeps me stiff and still at night the wardrobe and costume of the clown were spot on i think no sense in over doing it,but their does need to be a focus on the black spot fire the easter egg hunt and most certainly the log cabin massacre and the death of adrian their need to be an establishing to how the fear is personified the cliches being redifined the moster in the attic stuff the fear that grips and sticks The kids need to be played by kids with enuff exp i myself am a great actor and will settle for background so please mr david of the remake please its my life dream to be in this movie.

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