ByTom Chapman, writer at Creators.co
tweet: tomtomchap Warden of the North - bearded, tattooed and square eyed 'til the end
Tom Chapman

As Andy Muschietti's IT continues to "float" above the competition at the box office, fans are calling the first big screen adaptation of Stephen King's 1986 novel one of the best horror films of the modern age. With Bill Skarsgård showing that he isn't clowning around when it comes to playing the malevolent villain of the piece, horror aficionados are already quivering in anticipation of the upcoming sequel.

It was always going to be a hard task for to take over from Tim Curry's lauded performance from the 1990 miniseries, but under the direction of Muschietti, we got a wholly different take on Pennywise the Dancing Clown. While it would be all too easy for Skarsgård to simply copy the Curry clown from all those years ago, it seems that Bill's muse for Pennywise came from a little closer to home.

It Was All Child's Play

Speaking on Conan, Skarsgård attributed the birth of his "Pennywise face" to his older brother Gustaf. Also an actor, Gustaf realized he could pull his lip forward to create a terrifying visage, and it didn't take Bill long to figure out that he could also perform the same trick. Pulling inpiration straight from his childhood, Bill took on the guise of a character called Jürgen for his IT audition:

"I came up with this character called Jürgen which is a Swedish name, and I would pull my t-shirt up like over my head so you could see just the opening. I would do this face and then I would chase my little brother."

On the chat show, Skarsgård wasted no time in showing off that creepy clown crease, much to the horror of Conan and his audience. It is also reported that it wasn't just that sinister smile that nabbed Bill the part as the enigmatic, evil entity, and that he also came to the audition in full clown makeup just to complete the illusion. Given that either Will Poulter or Hugo Weaving were originally supposed to play Pennywise, it is hard now to imagine anyone other than Skarsgård in the role.

Once in full Pennywise getup, it is easy to see how Bill's facial talent made the carnivorous clown into the horror icon that we saw reinvented for this year's film. From dragging Georgie down the storm drain to taking on Richie in a room full of demonic dolls, IT excelled in putting the frighteners up those who managed to make it through the movie's runtime.

Taking over $100 million its first weekend, it certainly looks like Skarsgård has every right to be smiling right now. With the sinister Swede also guaranteed for the sequel, it looks like filling Curry's giant clown shoes may not have been as hard to fill as we first thought.

Check out our box office breakdown for IT and don't forget the poll below:

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What did you think of 'IT'?

(Source: Team Coco)

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