When it comes to adapting books into movies or TV shows, it's to be expected that creative liberties will be taken. Last year's IT was no exception, whether it was changing some of the forms that Pennywise turned into or taking out the most controversial scene from Stephen King's 1986 novel. But that movie just adapted one half of the original story. Next year, the other half will be told in IT: Chapter 2, and thanks to some new casting announcements, we've learned that the sequel will still depict the killing of Adrian Mellon in Derry, Maine.
Xavier Dolan, whose credits include Tom at the Farm, Heartbeats and Elephant Song, has reportedly been cast in IT: Chapter 2 as Adrian Mellon. For those who haven't read the IT novel, Mellon lived in Derry, Maine and was in a relationship with Don Hagarty. Although Adrian had started to become fond of the town, he agreed to leave for Don, who had grown tired not just of many of the prevailing homophobic attitudes, but had also grown increasingly frightened of the evil lurking within Derry. Unfortunately, after attending Derry's annual fair, the two men were assaulted by three homophobic teens, and Adrian was thrown off the bridge. From there, Pennywise emerged from the shadows and killed Adrian, and while Don and one of the youths witnessed this, the demonic entity was never publicly mentioned.
Adrian Mellon's murders is one of the earliest events depicted in IT, although chronologically speaking, it takes place shortly before the main present day narrative begins, i.e. when the members of the Losers Club return to Derry, Maine 27 years after their first encounter with Pennywise. The scene gave readers their first inkling of just how horrifying IT's eponymous antagonist really was. Since we already saw what Pennywise is capable of in the first IT movie, I imagine that Adrian Mellon's murder will mainly be used to show that Pennywise has finally resurfaced, thus requiring the Losers Club members to come back to their hometown and deal with this monster for good in IT: Chapter 2.
In addition to reporting on Xavier Dolan's casting, Deadline also revealed that Queen of the South actor Will Beinbrink has been cast in IT: Chapter 2 as Tom Rogan, Beverly Marsh's abusive husband. Dolan and Beinbrink join a cast that includes Jessica Chastain as Beverly, James McAvoy as Bill Denbrough, Bill Hader as Richie Tozier, James Ransone as Eddie Kaspbrak, Andy Bean as Stanley Uris, Jay Ryan as Ben Hanscom and Isaiah Mustafa as Mike Hanlon.