IT Chapter Two Gave James McAvoy Nightmares Before Filming Even Began

James McAvoy in IT Chapter 2

Stephen King is an author who has given many people nightmares in his career. Whether you're a fan of his books, or the movies based on them, odds are something you've read or seen has chilled you at one point or another. James McAvoy, who plays the role of the adult version of Bill in the forthcoming IT Chapter Two, is no exception.

McAvoy first read Stephen King's IT when he was 15-years-old, but the actor recently told EW that reading the book as a kid didn't give him nightmares. Rather, it was when he re-read the book in order to get prepared for his film role that the book really got to him. According to McAvoy...

When I reread It as an adult for the film, I actually had nightmares about Pennywise in a way that I never did as a child.

For whatever reason, apparently James McAvoy wasn't terrified of Pennywise as a teenager, but many years later the clown would finally get to him. Maybe that's somewhat fitting considering that the actor is playing the adult version of one of the kids who defeated the clown the first time around. Just because they are adults doesn't mean that they're going to be in any better position to beat the clown again. If anything, as adults they're smart enough to realize just what kind of danger they are in, something they maybe didn't contextualize as children.

Of course, one has to wonder if the first IT movie may have had something to do with the fact that the book gave James McAvoy nightmares the second time around. Picturing the events of the book in your head are one thing, but we now have Bill Skarsgard's performance as Pennywise to help add flavor to the experience. It would be difficult to read the book now and not see Skarsgard's version of Pennywise in your head.

If the first movie was enough to give you nightmares, get ready for IT Chapter Two to take things to another level. We've been teased that the sequel will be even more terrifying than the first movie. There are certainly enough moments in the book that could be translated into terrifying images on screen, though we know the filmmakers aren't limited by the book either.

The first movie, which told the story of our heroes as kids, set box office records for a horror movie, and every indication is that the sequel is going to follow suit. If the new movie matches the first one in viewer perception as well, IT could end up being one of the most successful novel adaptations we've ever seen. Of course, even that won't be the end because we've already been promised an extended cut of IT Chapter Two somewhere down the line.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.