Stephen King's It is more than 1,000 pages long and the second part in Warner Bros.' film adaptation of the iconic novel will allegedly pay homage to that fact by having one crazy long run time for a horror film. Not that any of us book fans are complaining, mind you.
During a recent chat with Digital Spy and other news outlets, It: Chapter Two director Andy Muschietti revealed that the highly-anticipated horror sequel will clock in at a whopping 2 hours and 45 minutes. That's 5 minutes longer than Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood (now in theaters) and just 17 minutes shy of Marvel Studios' Avengers: Endgame (hitting digital platforms tomorrow).
"A movie is very different when you're writing the script and you're building a story compared to what the final product is," the Mama filmmaker reportedly said. "At the beginning, when you're writing and building the beats of the story, everything that you put in there seems very essential to the story. However, when you have the movie finally edited and it's 4 hours long, you realise that some of the events and some of the beats can be easily lifted but the essence of the story remains intact. You cannot deliver a 4-hour movie because people will start to feel uncomfortable – no matter what they see – but we ended up having a movie that is 2 hours and 45 minutes, and the pacing is very good. Nobody who's seen the movie has had any complaint."
Allowing the second part to run for so long makes a lot of sense when you consider that the first movie had to cut out several elements from the source material, including It's arrival on Earth during the age of the dinosaurs and the Ritual of Chüd, an arcane ceremony that proves to be the only way to defeat Pennywise. In addition, the nearly 3-hour runtime may also give us the scene of Bill Denbrough meeting Maturin, the cosmic Turtle who is said have coughed up our universe during a fit of indigestion. He's also It's only equal in all of existence. However, some or all of those sequences may be saved for the director's cut, which was confirmed by Muschietti's producing partner and sister, Barbara.
"We will put out a director's cut because this time it definitely merits it," she said. "We have some amazing scenes that didn't make it into the movie. You have to make choices sometimes and some things cannot be in this theatrical release but are definitely worthy of people seeing them at a later date."
Thankfully, Andy assured the gathered outlets that Chapter Two will still scare the pants off of general audiences, because none of the most terrifying bits were axed from the theatrical cut. Based on the awesome footage we saw at SDCC, we can't refute it.
"Everything that is too scary is in the movie," the director added.
Where the first movie centered on the young Losers' Club during their first altercation with Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård), Part Two will revolve around the grown-up version of the group, which returns to Derry, Maine in an effort to finish off the killer clown once and for all. The adult Losers are portrayed by the ensemble collection of James McAvoy (Denbrough), Jessica Chastain (Beverly Marsh), Bill Hader (Richie Tozier), Jay Ryan (Ben Hanscom), Isaiah Mustafa (Mike Hanlon), James Ransone (Eddie Kaspbrak), and Andy Bean (Stan Uris).
It: Chapter Two floats into theaters everywhere Friday, Sep. 6.