Pennywise, the child-eating clown in Stephen King’s 1986 horror novel It, is meant to be the personification of evil. But the first attempt to bring him to screens, 1990’s television miniseries starring Tim Curry failed to encapsulate Pennywise’s particular brand of terror. The first trailer for the upcoming big screen adaptation makes it clear that this will not be the case. Because it is bone chilling.
The trailer introduces us to Pennywise (Bill Skarsgard) as well as the “Losers Club”, the seven kids who’ll face off against him. A shapeshifting, ageless creature who appears every 27 years or so to feast on the inhabitants of Derry, Maine, Pennywise takes the form of a clown to lure children. He lives in the interconnected sewer system below the town and, as the trailer’s ominous first storm-drain scene shows, has a penchant for sneaking up on the most innocent and unsuspecting.
Stephen King’s book is massive, as it tells the story of the Loser’s Club battling It as children and then again as adults. As such, the film will be split into two parts. While this is bad news for anyone who gets the creeps from commercials starring fanged, maniacal clowns, it’s good news for King fans.
More good news: It is just the first of two King adaptations slated for 2017. The other, The Dark Tower, the first based off his sprawling 8-book fantasy series and starring Idris Elba and Matthew McConaughey, is slated to hit theaters this July. While packed with monsters, it features far fewer clowns.
It hits theaters on September 8th.