First of all, can we all agree that clowns are just scary? I never had a birthday party as a child, and I put this down to the unconscious fear that a balloon might make a clown manifest, and just ruin the day.
The upcoming demonic-clown-horror “It” stars Bill Skarsgård as Pennywise the clown, and well… he really brings the terror to a new level. So it’s no surprise that his depiction of the eponymous being cause a few children on set to be a little bit teary. Speaking to Interview magazine (through his brother Alexander), Skarsgård told about the terror he created on set:
It’s a really weird thing to go, “If I succeed at doing what I’m trying to do with this character, I’ll traumatize kids.” On set, I wasn’t very friendly or goofy. I tried to maintain some sort of weirdness about the character, at least when I was in all the makeup. At one point, they set up this entire scene, and these kids come in, and none of them have seen me yet. Their parents have brought them in, these little extras, right? And then I come out as Pennywise, and these kids—young, normal kids—I saw the reaction that they had. Some of them were really intrigued, but some couldn’t look at me, and some were shaking. This one kid started crying. He started to cry and the director yelled, “Action!” And when they say “action,” I am completely in character. So some of these kids got terrified and started to cry in the middle of the take, and then I realized, “Holy shit. What am I doing? What is this? This is horrible.”
Skarsgård is a decent guy though, and made sure to comfort the kids after the director yelled “cut” so they knew he wasn’t actually all that scary.
Really though, can you blame the kids? I’d cry too if this were to come at me –
He further commented
Hopefully, there will be a lot of 10-year-olds who will be traumatized forever based on my performance.
Never mind the 10-year-olds Skarsgård, this 30-year-old is in danger of permanent trauma. Compare the 2017 Pennywise with the 1990 version, seen on the TV miniseries and played by Tim Curry –
I used to be scared of this one, compared to the 21st century version though he just looks like Ronald McDonald on crack.
The clown, um I mean film, will be in theaters September 8, 2017.