It was already one of the most anticipated films of the year. But now, after seeing the first exclusive clips from the film — as well as a new trailer — it’s become one of my most anticipated movies of all time. Stephen King’s novel is the Bible for horror fiction so there was certainly some trepidation in bringing this story to the big screen. But all concerns were swept clean with the sneak peek we got at Comic-Con.
The First Clip: The Losers Club
New Line Cinema started the presentation with a clip that didn’t have any scares but instead something more important: strong, endearing characters.
We got to see the Losers Club — the gang of seven kids who end up forming a powerful friendship and fighting against It — jump into a lake from an unnervingly high cliff. After a spitting contest — which Stranger Things actor Finn Wolfhard told us was completely improvised — the boys all feel too nervous to jump.
Then, Beverly Marsh, the only girl in the group, shows all the boys up and jumps in. After a few excited curses (it’s great that these kids are realistically foul-mouthed), they all take the plunge. There are so many wonderful small moments between the actors, as you can read how they feel about each other with just the tiniest of glances.
After their swim, they gather on the shore, and Ben Hanscom shows the Club a bunch of newspaper clippings about the fire at the Black Spot, a club for African-Americans that burned down in the ’60s. Ben says that Derry, Maine has an abnormally high number of people who have disappeared. It’s here that the Losers begin to understand that there is something ancient and evil lurking at the heart of Derry.
The Second Clip: The Apocalyptic Rock Fight
Fans of the book know what that title means. It’s the moment where the Losers Club gains its seventh and final member, Mike Hanlon. The clip started with the villainous bully, Henry Bowers torturing Mike. As Henry mashes Mike’s face into the ground with his foot, Mike looks off into the bushes and sees something terrifying.
It’s Pennywise the Clown. He’s giggling like a little child, blood is running down his mouth, and in his hand is the severed arm of a kid. Pennywise waves the arm at Mike and laughs. It’s the exact right mix of ghastly and goofy.
Then, a rock sails in and hits Henry on the head. It’s the Losers Club, and they are ready to throw down. The kids start lobbing rocks at each other — apparently, actor Jack Dylan Grazer got so into the fight that he picked up a real rock at one point — while a metal song blasts on the soundtrack. There’s some more grin-inducing cursing (even one in slow-mo!), and the Losers get away with their new friend.
This Is It
The footage we saw won me over entirely. It’s incredible how natural and charming all of the Losers are, and their natural chemistry makes them feel like a tight-knit group of friends.
While the trailer will drop shortly, I can reveal that we’ve finally heard Pennywise speak and it is PERFECT. You’ll have to wait for that, but it’s pretty clear now that It will be worth the wait. September 8 can’t get here soon enough.