Changes to IT movie

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Senor_Biggles

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Sep 13, 2015
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If it has to be a movie (and they cannot persuade Cary Fukunaga to come back or get Frank Darabont to take up the mantle) then this approach makes sense to me. A single film can’t possibly do justice to the book, but planning two big budget films on an untried property, one which will hopefully be R rated is a big risk. If you divide the narrative into two and the first film flops then it is at least self contained and does not demand a sequel.
Personally I think it needs HBO to get in on it and turn it into a series. So much to explore, not just with the Losers in either period, but with the whole history of Derry and the ever present Pennywise. Think the time is right for that approach as well, television drama had become so much more sophisticated in the last decade or so.
 

Pucker

We all have it coming, kid
May 9, 2010
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Two spans, time and attention, play merry hell with such projects. We've seen that people will wait for sequels, if they're die-hard interested in the story. This story may pique such interest, but my concern -- again, as a reader first and always -- is that even the same events, told in a linear fashion, do not tell the same story.

If that makes any sense.
 
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Robert Gray

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The problem, at least from my perspective, is that many people often overlook the clever and rather experimental construction of the novel. It isn't two stories that take place, first with the children and later with the adults. It is both stories simultaneously. That is as much part of the strength as any other part. It is a demonstration that who we are as kids reflects in who we are as adults. Breaking the movie into two parts where part one is the children and part two is the adults would undermine the impact. While I'm all for a longer treatment of the book (if a film treatment must be done at all), I would like the integrity of the literary construction to continue onto the screen. This is important for all sorts of reasons, not the least of which is our connection to the characters. Remember, for the most part we don't meet most of the Losers as kids first (only Big Bill). We meet most of them as adults first. Most of us are adults now and we have to make that journey back to our childhood as the protagonists do. It is to a large degree how we as the readers connect so strongly. We don't just open a book about kids. We enter into a tunnel with adults that we can understand and have context with. When they journey back and remember what it is truly like to be a child, so do we. A disconnected set of films which skip this process simply won't connect the same way.
 

Mr. Gray Robert

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Aug 28, 2015
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The problem, at least from my perspective, is that many people often overlook the clever and rather experimental construction of the novel. It isn't two stories that take place, first with the children and later with the adults. It is both stories simultaneously. That is as much part of the strength as any other part. It is a demonstration that who we are as kids reflects in who we are as adults. Breaking the movie into two parts where part one is the children and part two is the adults would undermine the impact. While I'm all for a longer treatment of the book (if a film treatment must be done at all), I would like the integrity of the literary construction to continue onto the screen. This is important for all sorts of reasons, not the least of which is our connection to the characters. Remember, for the most part we don't meet most of the Losers as kids first (only Big Bill). We meet most of them as adults first. Most of us are adults now and we have to make that journey back to our childhood as the protagonists do. It is to a large degree how we as the readers connect so strongly. We don't just open a book about kids. We enter into a tunnel with adults that we can understand and have context with. When they journey back and remember what it is truly like to be a child, so do we. A disconnected set of films which skip this process simply won't connect the same way.
I agree!! The 90's made for TV version touched on this during the first part but it needs to be aired as close to the book as possible, which in my humble opinion would be an HBO series. The Derry Interlude's would have to be a part of it too.
 

mjs9153

Peripherally known member..
Nov 21, 2014
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First time I read this...Noooo!! they are going to do away with the mummy and werewolf,and what else,to make it modern?!! Didn't we learn a lesson from Under the Dome? (though some liked that series,and as Jerry Seinfeld would say,theres nothing wrong with that)..but not It!SK hated a director toying with his work in Kubrick's The Shining,and now we are gonna get some grab bag kind of interpretation by some director that probably never read the book? Sorry,this depresses me..
 

sam peebles

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Sep 17, 2008
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Massachusetts
Agree with everyone here. Keep it set in the 50s/80s, leave the chronology alone, and don't break it evenly between childhood/adulthood. The two ages should mirror and play off one another, not be separated by two hours.

The Lord of the Rings (books) are broken up in this manner--you can go hundreds of pages before getting back to Frodo and Gollum, or vice versa, Gandalf and Aragorn--and Peter Jackson wisely decided to change this for the film, weaving the divergent stories together, so you're not stuck with just Sam and Frodo for half the movie.

That being said, I wouldn't mind it if they removed some of the things we've already seen in the first adaptation for parts that were left out. Some scenes that come to mind immediately are Pennywise under the bridge, taking a bite out of a man's armpit (wasn't the original inspiration a troll?), Mike hiding in a smoke tower from a giant bird, and the craziness at the house on Niebolt Street. You could leave out the mummy if you gave me one--or all--of those.

I'd also like it if they included some of the history behind It to give the movie a sense of weight and really make it epic. Show It crashing to Earth millions of years ago like a giant asteroid. Show me the lumberjack slaughter, the posse slaughter, the explosion at the steelworks factory, the burning down of that black Army hang out (can't quite recall the name of it) where Dick Halloran works.

Obviously you can't do all of this, but I think more of It's background to show how truly ancient, evil, and powerful It is would definitely be helpful.

I think it's become pretty evident: give me a couple hundred million and make me the director.

Sure, I might not have any experience and be a fanboy that holds the original material as sacred, but I won't let us down. I swear!
 

Gerald

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Sep 8, 2011
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The problem, at least from my perspective, is that many people often overlook the clever and rather experimental construction of the novel. It isn't two stories that take place, first with the children and later with the adults. It is both stories simultaneously. That is as much part of the strength as any other part. It is a demonstration that who we are as kids reflects in who we are as adults. Breaking the movie into two parts where part one is the children and part two is the adults would undermine the impact. While I'm all for a longer treatment of the book (if a film treatment must be done at all), I would like the integrity of the literary construction to continue onto the screen. This is important for all sorts of reasons, not the least of which is our connection to the characters. Remember, for the most part we don't meet most of the Losers as kids first (only Big Bill). We meet most of them as adults first. Most of us are adults now and we have to make that journey back to our childhood as the protagonists do. It is to a large degree how we as the readers connect so strongly. We don't just open a book about kids. We enter into a tunnel with adults that we can understand and have context with. When they journey back and remember what it is truly like to be a child, so do we. A disconnected set of films which skip this process simply won't connect the same way.

I think there will be some sort of framing device. In the mini-series it goes back and forth, but not so much. The first part also was mainly the kids and the second mainly the adults.
I doubt strongly in the first movie we will see JUST the kids and in the second JUST the adults. It doesn't really seem possible to film it entirely without going back and forth a bit, because it's all about recalling things from childhood.

Unless of course it's a radically different treatment, which would interest me how they pull that off.
 

OldDarth

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Jul 10, 2006
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Coming of age stories are timeless. Changing the time periods to make it more relevant to today's audiences is fine by me as long as the book's themes are preserved.

As to the narrative chronology while I do like the way the book interleaves the past and present, from a movie perspective it is unwieldy and which result in a 2 - 3 hour length which would lose too much. That leaves either one long movie chopped into two with a cliffhanger or two separate movies. I rather like the idea of two separate movies where the adults of the second, like the audience, are linked back to the first by our memories.
 
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Robert Gray

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Coming of age stories are timeless. Changing the time periods to make it more relevant to today's audiences is fine by me as long as the book's themes are preserved.

Generic coming of age stories are timeless in theme, but not in execution. For better or for worse, the story of It is tied to 1958 or thereabouts. There are all sorts of problems which will glare at viewers of the film if they update that, not the least of which is that kids growing up in the updated time period are not afraid of vampires, the creature from the black lagoon, or Frankenstein. They grew up with Freddy on Elm Street, Jason at Camp Crystal Lake, and a horde of knock-offs of the same. In fact, the book itself addresses this issue when adult Bill talks to a kid who mentions the notion that someone saw a giant shark swimming in the canal. Why? Because Jaws in syndication would have been staple horror trope for kids in the 80s.

If you change the details, you change the story. The devil and God are both in those details and the story of It is set in a specific frame. I don't have any interest in watching lesser talents rewrite the story. I have the book, and that is were I will default. I understand there are some things which do not survive the translation to film, nor do I expect literary purist perfection in the conversion. I draw the line, however, at changes which are not necessary. Altering the time changes way too much. If you are going to changes the decades, why not change the town? Why not change the mix of kids? Why not change Pennywise's clown guise to something more contemporary? Clowns haven't really been on anyone's radar for sometime. I'm sure you get my point.
 
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GeorgiesArm

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Jun 12, 2008
141
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I see the 50's more as a sauce, a jacket. The themes of the book are what truly make the story, and they are timeless. Do Ben's character and childhood traumas change if he sees a shape different from the mummy?

Growing up in the 80s I saw a lot of vampires and werewolves, and I was damn scared of them. Partially thanks to Salem's Lot. I find it weird that people say It could only change into Freddy or Jason if It's set in the 80s. The Jaws thing was just King having fun with throwing an updated reference in the book.

I read an older script for IT that also set the kids' part in the 80s, and honestly, you hardly notice. But that script had much bigger problems.
 

Robert Gray

Well-Known Member
I see the 50's more as a sauce, a jacket. The themes of the book are what truly make the story, and they are timeless.

We will have to agree to disagree. Themes aren't stories. There are eggs in an omelet, a cake, and in most pies. The egg is fairly timeless, but it sure as hell doesn't taste the same in each of those preparations. Stories are about people, i.e. characters. Characters are defined by both their personality and their context. If themes were what truly make a story, every story would be great because there aren't that many themes.
 

OldDarth

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Jul 10, 2006
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We will have to agree to disagree.

Yes we will.

For me:

Themes lurk in the white space between the lines of a the story. They don't make stories on their own but they do make stories great. And timeless.

The trick is the proper execution, or art, of making themselves apparent through inference. The audience makes inferences based on the story events and how the character acts/reacts to them.

That's the hard and elusive part of crafting a story.

The core of fictional characters doesn't change because the window dressing of a story changes. They may have different surface shadings but underneath the character's base glass window of traits stay static.

Great posts, BTW, Robert and Georgie.
 

GeorgiesArm

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Jun 12, 2008
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You too, Lou. Already looking forward to hearing your review on podcast #... let's go with 86 for now, in honor of the book's release year.

They do say there's a very limited amount of stories. It's the jacket the creator puts on it that makes it it's own, unique and personal spin. And the 50s is part of an awesome one for the book. For me there's just so much to It, you can pick & choose a few things and still come out with a fantastic story.

We both share a great love for this book, Robert Gray. You've made it very evident with your large, well thought out posts here on the board. I look forward to hopefully reading your thoughts on this adaptation next year. A little discussion of how much we feel it captured the spirit of the book. The fact they went out of their way to film in the actual Barrens in Bangor right now tells me they are at least trying their best. And that image Muschietti released on instagram yesterday... brrrr. They're not shying away from the graphic child deaths.
 

Robert Gray

Well-Known Member
You too, Lou. Already looking forward to hearing your review on podcast #... let's go with 86 for now, in honor of the book's release year.

They do say there's a very limited amount of stories. It's the jacket the creator puts on it that makes it it's own, unique and personal spin. And the 50s is part of an awesome one for the book. For me there's just so much to It, you can pick & choose a few things and still come out with a fantastic story.

We both share a great love for this book, Robert Gray. You've made it very evident with your large, well thought out posts here on the board. I look forward to hopefully reading your thoughts on this adaptation next year. A little discussion of how much we feel it captured the spirit of the book. The fact they went out of their way to film in the actual Barrens in Bangor right now tells me they are at least trying their best. And that image Muschietti released on instagram yesterday... brrrr. They're not shying away from the graphic child deaths.

Did they? I must have missed that part. :D When were the film crews down there. It is part of my daily run and I don't remember ever seeing them. Just the same, if the reviews aren't awful, I'm sure I'll see it. Mostly I try not to discuss film adaptations too much before they are released because I've become jaded and pessimistic about them. I don't want to bum other people out. I have a slight say on it and shut up, saving any real review until after I've seen it. It suffices to say I'm not exactly thrilled about the stuff I'm hearing, so I might as well hold my tongue until the thing happens.
 

Ceefor

Proud Member Of The SKMB, 21.05.13 - 30.06.20
May 21, 2013
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...whew!...fer a minute there, I thought it was going to be that Pennywise would be cast as a sentient kangaroo.....

You just gave me the giggles at the last two words...! ;-D
 
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Doc Creed

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I know the first film will feature the kids but I'm hearing that no adults have been cast yet. How can the movie be effective without their adult counterparts to anchor the first movie? You know...the whole flashback device. For example, I'm thinking of the famous Six Phone Calls from the novel. Thoughts?