SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains certain spoilers about the end of Stephen King's IT, and therefore potential spoilers for the developing IT: Chapter 2. If you have not read the book, and don't wish to know how it all ends, please bookmark this page and save it until you're ready to read!
Prior to Andres Muscheitti's film, there were a few reasons why Stephen King's IT was considered unadaptable in the medium, and only one of them was the extreme length of the story. Another is the fact that the end of the book winds up getting extremely trippy and weird in its third act, with both the kids and adults' storylines leading to confrontation with the titular monster on an inter-dimensional battlefield. Obviously this element was entirely left out of the recently released movie, but star Bill Skarsgard really wants to see IT: Chapter 2 fully embrace it. Discussing the nature and mind of Pennywise in the novel, he recently said,
It's hardly answered in the novel, either. I mean, it's very abstract. And I kind of like that. It could be almost a sort of surrealistic sort of psychedelic trip if you go into the mind of Pennywise. And if you've read the novel you know that they do actually go into his mind. Or they go into this trans-dimensional place, and they sort of beat him in this place. Which might be interesting, what that place would be, and what would it look like. There's opportunities, I think, and I'm excited for it.
Bill Skarsgard is currently promoting his second Stephen King adaptation of 2017, the new Hulu series Castle Rock, but while speaking with IGN at New York Comic-Con this past weekend he also took the time to talk about what he would like to see in IT: Chapter 2. The actor was asked about the possibility of the sequel delving deeper into his monstrous character's mind, and Skarsgard noted that he thinks there are some fantastic visual opportunities to explore with that idea in the source material.
In the novel, there are a couple chapters that dive into the nature of Pennywise, and it's revealed that he is an ancient, interdimensional entity who feeds on fear for sustenance so that he can last through his 27-year hibernation periods. Defeating IT requires the fight being brought to ITs own home turf - in a "ceremony" called The Ritual of Chud - and how it's described in the book would be a sincere challenge to directly adapt on screen.
The Losers Club performs the Ritual of Chud when they are both children and adults, but just because it wasn't featured in Andres Muschietti's IT doesn't mean that it won't wind up in IT: Chapter 2. In fact, Bill Skarsgard argues that the sequel actually should be a very different film, as what scares children and what scares adults are two very different things, and that deserves exploration. Said Skarsgard,
The first movie worked so well at what it is trying to do, I think, and ultimately that is the kids' story, and you follow these kids and you sort of fall in love with these kids. And the second one will be the adult story. And I think the right way to do it is to make that movie actively different. ... I think there might be worth exploring sort of the psychological aspects of horror, but also maybe the sort of cosmological existence of this being. What is he, and where does he come from?
When didn't actually know when we would be getting IT: Chapter 2 for what felt like a long time to an impatient mind - but that mystery was solved a few weeks back. Warner Bros. has officially dated the follow-up for September 6, 2019, and we will keep you up to date with all major updates!