Bill Skarsgard had Pennywise nightmares
Stephen King's 1,100+ page novel 'IT' is one of the author's most celebrated works. Often hailed as his scariest fiction, the story has been adapted before for the small screen in a double episode feature, but it wasn't until last year that it made its way to cinemas across the globe, making the franchise's Pennywise a true global horror icon.
Bill Skarsgard was the actor to bring Pennywise to life in the film, directed by Andy Muschietti who worked off a screenplay written by Chase Palmer, Gary Dauberman and Cary Fukunaga. Jaeden Lieberher, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard, Chosen Jacobs and Jack Dylan Grazer made up the young cast known as the Loser's Club, whilst Jackson Robert Scott brought the ill-fated Georgie Denbrough to proceedings. Amazing performances were put on by all, and the movie broke a number of box office records upon a few weeks of release.
Though Pennywise managed to scare millions of viewers, the assumption from the majority would be that Skarsgard would be immune to his fear, but just like most other people, the clown managed to work his way into the young actor's psyche.
Speaking with EW, the actor explained: "I liken every character that I do to a relationship that you're in. Pennywise and Bill go into this sort of relationship together, and I'm trying to figure out who he is and I have to devote so much time and effort to this other person - or thing, in this case - and that goes on for months."
He continued: "It's just like being in a very destructive relationship. People don't really realise it until they're out of it. All your friends go, 'You need to dump this piece of sh-, he or she is destroying your life.' And then once you're out of it, you see, 'I was so miserable.' But I wouldn't say I was miserable doing Pennywise because I had a lot of fun with it as well."
When he was done with the role, he said the moment he realised he was done with Pennywise was like "an exorcism", but revealed how the clown still visited him in "very strange and vivid Pennywise dreams", where the entity would take on a number of different forms.
Fortunately, Skarsgard now seems to have let go of the monster completely, but with the clown's return right around the corner in 'IT: Chapter 2', set for release in 2019, the actor will have to revisit the character at least one more time in the future. They may be separated for now, but Skarsgard's and Pennywise's future is undoubtedly intertwined.
"I'm good with it," says the actor. We'll have to find out if he feels the same way once he's wrapped filming on 'Chapter 2'!
'IT' comes to Blu-ray and DVD home release across the UK on Monday, January 15. The movie's available now on digital download. —Contactmusic