As it turns out, we were at least somewhat close to getting a full trilogy of IT movies. Producer Barbara Muschietti and director Andy Muschietti recently discussed the challenges in adapting Stephen King's beloved horror novel for the big screen, which concludes with IT Chapter Two this weekend. King's book provides such a wealth of material that they considered splitting the sequel in two, but ultimately decided against it.
With IT Chapter Two finally making its way to theaters this weekend, the filmmakers have been making the press rounds to promote the release. During a recent interview, Barbara Muschietti explained that, following the success of the first movie, they at least considered doing two more installments. Here's what she had to say about it.
"We flirted with making two more films. Then it was decided that we would only make one film but clearly there was a lot of material that Andy and our writers had to adapt."
It's worth mentioning that the novel is rather sizable, clocking in at over 900 pages. That's a ton of material to boil down into two movies. Andy Muschietti decided to make the first movie all about The Losers Club's first encounter with Pennywise, with the sequel largely focusing on them as adults 27 years after the fact. Muschietti explained how the sequel ultimately differs from the source material.
"There's a lot of It that's a lot of writing. The challenge was to wrap this huge work and translate it into film language. So the story is leaner. It's tighter. We turn the screws of tension to keep the audience on the edge of their seat all the time. And everything is more consequential. In the book, it's just looser."
It's worth noting that, even in its leaner form, these two movies add up. IT clocked in at 2 hours and 15 minutes, while IT Chapter Two is much longer at a blistering 2 hours and 48 minutes. That has been a sticking point for many critics so far, as quite a few seem to feel the movie doesn't justify its nearly three-hour journey. It's also worth pointing out that Andy Muschietti's first cut was in the four-hour range. Doing some simple math there, it's not hard to see where that could have provided enough material for three, two-hour installments, making for a trilogy.
At the end of the day, writer Gary Dauberman was able to make everything work in one more movie. Surely Warner Bros. would have entertained the notion of a trilogy, as IT grossed $700 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing horror movie ever, and the early indication is IT Chapter Two is going to bring in the big bucks as well. At the very least, this opens the door for a unique director's cut in the future. Or maybe even a miniseries, like Quentin Tarantino did for The Hateful Eight. This news comes to us via io9.