As far as reboots are considered, the horror genre is gold, so it would make sense why IT was being considered for a remake.
Originally director Cary Fukunaga (True Detective) was on board to create an IT reboot, but unfortunately the film fell apart. While we’re not counting out seeing an IT remake in the future, odds are it won’t have Fukunaga’s name attached, and for some, that’s a huge let down.
So what exactly happened? Well, according to Variety, Fukunaga spoke about what went wrong with IT and it’s what you would naturally expect. Fukunaga had to deal with creative differences he had with the studio, and because of that it created some problems. The director explained in his interview with Variety:
“I was trying to make an unconventional horror film. It didn’t fit into the algorithm of what they knew they could spend and make money back on based on not offending their standard genre audience. Our budget was perfectly fine. We were always hovering at the $32 million mark, which was their budget. It was the creative that we were really battling. It was two movies. They didn’t care about that. In the first movie, what I was trying to do was an elevated horror film with actual characters. They didn’t want any characters. They wanted archetypes and scares. I wrote the script. They wanted me to make a much more inoffensive, conventional script. But I don’t think you can do proper Stephen King and make it inoffensive.”
It seems like Fukunaga was very focused on developing a dimensional Pennywise. From the interview it seems like he wanted to bring a villain that had a complex psyche, who was more than just a scary clown. It makes sense seeing as audiences these days want nuance from their villains, which in part is thanks to Christopher Nolan. Fukunaga explained his vision for Pennywise.
“The main difference was making Pennywise more than just the clown. After 30 years of villains that could read the emotional minds of characters and scare them, trying to find really sadistic and intelligent ways he scares children, and also the children had real lives prior to being scared. And all that character work takes time. It’s a slow build, but it’s worth it, especially by the second film. But definitely even in the first film, it pays off.”
For Fukunaga he saw the writing on the wall when every small detail was being sent back by the studio. “It was being rejected. Every little thing was being rejected and asked for changes. Our conversations weren’t dramatic. It was just quietly acrimonious. We didn’t want to make the same movie. We’d already spent millions on pre-production. I certainly did not want to make a movie where I was being micro-managed all the way through production, so I couldn’t be free to actually make something good for them. I never desire to screw something up. I desire to make something as good as possible.”
Let’s hope New Line doesn’t get any old director to recreate IT, but the fact that it seems like they’re going for a conventional route doesn’t look too promising.
[Photo by Warner Bros.]