San Diego Comic-Con itself may not have really started until Thursday morning, but New Line and Warner Bros started the party early with their annual ScareDiego festivities, with this year’s event focused entirely on “It Chapter Two” — understandable, considering that will likely be easily the biggest horror movie of the year, if not ever.
Conan O’Brien moderated the panel, which featured director Andy Muschietti alongside the folks who play the adult versions of the Losers Club from the first “It” — Jessica Chastain (Beverly), James McAvoy (Bill), Bill Hader (Richie), Jay Ryan (Ben), Isaiah Mustafa (Mike), James Ransone (Eddie) and Andy Bean (Stanley).
The group presented the new trailer for “It Chapter Two” along with three scenes that added up to about 20 minutes of the film, interspersed with questions that O’Brien asked the cast and capped with a half-hour of questions from fans in attendance. But you’re just here to read about what we saw, so let’s get to it.
It should go without say but, uh, spoilers from here on out.
All three scenes were a doozie, and two of them were entirely new and not at all adapted from the Stephen King novel on which these movies are based.
The first of the three scenes showed the reunion of the Losers Club at the Chinese restaurant Jade of the Orient in fictional Derry, Maine, a scene that fans of the book will know well. The bulk of the first few minutes of the scene shows the group, minus Stanley, getting reacquainted and generally just shooting the s— and marveling at Ben’s transformation into a hot guy. And then they talk about why Mike called them all up to get them to come back to Derry.
Before they actually get to the why of it, though, they all describe how when Mike called them they were overwhelmed by just the most horrible feeling of dread and general terror that they can ever remember feeling — and that’s because they’ve largely forgotten the traumatic events of the first movie.
Mike chalks this up to some kind of strange supernatural effect the town has on people — the longer you stay away, the more you forget. But Mike never moved away, and he never forgot about the horror that Pennywise wrought or the pact that the Losers made to take care of that clown should he ever show up again. And Mike called them all together for this reunion 27 years later because it appeared that Pennywise has done exactly that, with some mysterious disappearances very similar to the earlier events.
As Mike explains the situation, the other Losers start to remember what happened. And then, having finished their meals, they start to look at their fortune cookies, each of which contain a scrap of paper containing a single word. Realizing that this has to be some kind of supernatural thing, the men try to assemble the words into a sentence, but they can’t figure out one that makes sense. Until Beverly reveals she’s been holding onto one of these ersatz fortunes, which had Stanley’s name on it.
Then Bill adds that to the other and figures out that the words form this sentence: “Guess Stanley Could Not Cut It.”
Then the bowl of fortune cookies on the middle of the table starts to shake — or rather the cookies themselves are shaking. Then the cookies scatter themselves around the table, and then we see that something is moving in one of them. That thing breaks through the cookie shell, and then the scene cut to black just as it emerges.We Saw Three Scenes From “It: Chapter Two” at Comic-Con, and They Were Awesome
The next scene is original to the movie and has no basis in the book at all. McAvoy explained it as being an expansion on something broached in the book, when Bill meets a kid who lives in the house that Bill’s family lived in when Georgie was taken by Pennywise. The scene shows Bill, concerned that kid might be in danger, following the kid around a carnival and into a funhouse in an attempt to protect him. After making his way through the funhouse, Bill ends up in a hall of mirrors that is also full of glass barriers that aren’t always easy to see.
Bill eventually finds himself on opposites sides of the glass from that kid, and then sees Pennywise behind the kid on the other side of another pane of glass, licking his extraordinarily long tongue up the glass in a a manner best described as “extremely unsettling.” Pennywise then smashes his face against the glass over and over until it cracks, smiles, then dramatically breaks through the glass as his gaping maw of a mouth envelops the screen.
McAvoy said he actually injured himself shooting that scene, straining both his quad muscles and giving himself tendinitis by repeatedly kicking the glass to try to save the kid.
The third and final scene we saw had the Losers Club return to that creepy abandoned house that was the site of so much madness in the first movie. The group discusses what they’re going to do in there, when Bill notes that back in the day Richie had the best way of describing the plan. Richie doesn’t immediately remember what Bill is talking about, taking a couple incorrect guesses before it comes back to him: “Let’s kill this f—ing clown.” The header image on this post comes from this scene, by the way.
So they go into the house and things quickly start to go bad again, and the Losers Club is forcibly split into groups of three. We only saw how this played out for Bill, Richie and Eddie, who were stuck in a room with a small, old-style icebox that started shaking violently, then opened to reveal the twisted body of Stanley — who, in case you aren’t familiar with the book, died prior to the reunion, which was what that fortunate cookie was referring to.
Stanley’s head then falls out of the icebox and rolls to the opposite end of the room before facing the guys and talking to them. The big important part of this conversation comes when Stanley’s head tells Bill that he wouldn’t have died had Bill not gone on his crusade back in the first movie.
And then something really gross happens. Stanley’s head begins to sprout insect legs — and it’s absolutely disgusting the way it occurs, with one leg bursting through his skin very messily, and one even coming out of his eye socket. It’s just so gross. And once all the legs, which all have fully articulated human hands, are out, Stanley’s head rushes directly at the guys.
And that was everything we saw. All three scenes looked great and were unsettling at best and genuinely upsetting at worst. They showed off a lot of things that are original to the movie, which is exciting because it means that fans of the book could still very well be surprised by how “It Chapter Two” plays out. Either way, though, it looks pretty great from what we’ve seen, and hopefully the full film can deliver on that promise when it lands in theaters Sept. 6.
TheWrap is in San Diego all week long for Comic-Con 2019 — check out all of our ongoing coverage here.