Most novelists are lucky if one of their books catches the eye of Hollywood and makes it into feature film development, but Stephen King’s work has not only inspired countless adaptations, it’s inspired multiple adaptations of the same books. But one of King’s books that’s been ripe for an update is the horror epic It, which was previously made into a miniseries in 1990 and spurred terrible clown-centric nightmares for children everywhere—including yours truly.
A new iteration of It entered development a couple of years ago with True Detective helmer Cary Fukunaga co-writing and directing, but as the project came close to production, the filmmaker departed over creative differences. Now, Mama helmer Andy Muscietti is onboard to direct, and filming is set to get underway later this year.
Steve recently sat down for an exclusive interview with producer Roy Lee at DICE 2016, and Lee confirmed that Fukunaga and Chase Palmer’s original script—which they imbued with many of their personal experiences—has been rewritten:
“It will hopefully be shooting later this year. We just got the California tax credit… Gary Doberman wrote the most recent draft working with Andy Muscetti, so it’s being envisioned as two movies.”
Indeed, the plan was always to make this adaptation two movies, with the first revolving around the characters as children and the second picking up with them as adults. King’s book switches back and forth between the two time periods, and Lee added that once all is said and done, one could conceivably cut these two It movies together to make a more straightforward adaptation of King’s book:
“It is very close to the source material in one way but very different if you look at it as a literary piece of work… We’re taking it and making the movie from the point of view of the kids, and then making another movie from the point of view of the adults, that could potentially then be cut together like the novel. But it’s gonna be a really fun way of making this movie.”
As for the film’s rating, Lee confirms it will be Rated R and adds that while they have a final draft, they’re currently fine-tuning the script to hit their budget target:
“We are very close to turning in the final draft of the script. It’s mainly working on it for budgeting purposes to make it fit within the budget that we have.”
While it remains a bummer that we don’t get to see Cary Fukunaga’s version of this adaptation, it’ll be interesting to see how King’s terrifying novel is translated for modern horror audiences.
For more from Steve’s interview with Lee, click here for his update on The Stand movie.