Oh boy, I love this. I totally love this! Variety is reporting that Cary Fukunaga has found his Pennywise for the upcoming two-part feature film adaptation of Stephen King’s It in the most unlikely of places: 22-year-old British actor Will Poulter.
A few things I think we should consider: First, Cary Fukunaga is the director who directed Matthew McConaughey as, what I think is the performance of his career, Rust Cohle in True Detective. Matthew “Alright, Alright, Alright” McConaughey proved that he could be scary, intense, insane and completely believable in the HBO drama and it was Fukunaga who was steering the ship. Sure, McConaughey had played dark before (hello, Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation and Frailty!) but never like he did on True Detective, and I think it’s safe to say that the director most likely had something to do with that.
Second, there will never be another Tim Curry. While I would argue that the TV mini-series adaptation of It doesn’t really hold up, Curry’s performance does. So, in order to have the feature film adaptation be completely unique, the team behind the scenes are Penny-wise to go in what feels like a completely different direction when hiring the actor who will be the personification of terror.
Finally, I really love the idea of Pennywise being played by a young man who looks childlike in his own right. What a totally messed up and awesome layer to add to the character. Variety reports that the production considered older actors like Mark Rylance and Ben Mendelsohn for the role but ultimately were “blown away” by Poulter. This is bold and brave casting, horror friends, and I am even more excited for these movies than I was before!
For a fun little something extra, watch this montage of Poulter laughing in the context of him playing Pennywise… I’m telling you, I can totally see this!
How about you? Is this choice so crazy it just might work? Were there other actors that you think would have been a good fit for the role? Tell us your thoughts!
Stephen King’s It begins shooting this summer.