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Tilda Swinton was nearly a female Pennywise in Stephen King's IT

Contributed by
Jul 29, 2017

Mercurial actress Tilda Swinton has delivered many memorable performances in her career in films like Doctor Strange, Orlando, Female Perversions, Snowpiercer, Constantine, and The Chronicles of Narnia, but did you know she was almost cast in Andy Muschietti's IT as a female Pennywise instead of Bill Skarsgard?

Per a set visit by JoBlo, apparently Swinton was "strongly considered" for the role as an early option when explained by producer Barbara Muschietti.

“We auditioned literally hundreds of potential Bob Grays or Pennywises and it was an amazing process," she said during a press visit. "We got to audition people that don’t audition anymore and a huge gamut of talent; women, younger age, older age, we really went through the spectrum of actors.”

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According to her brother, director Andy Muschietti, Swinton ultimately didn't fit into the horror film's shooting schedule but would have been an intriguing choice.

“[Tilda Swinton] wasn’t available. No, no, I swear to god. She was not,” Andy Muschietti stated. “We had a slot to shoot the movie and she wasn’t available, so she didn’t even audition. But of course, we all thought about it.”

Barbara further explained the casting process that discovered Skarsgard (Hemlock Grove) to be a dead ringer for Stephen King's original evil entity in the 1986 novel:

"Bill came in and blew our socks off. Because he was doing his very own interpretation of Pennywise, very erudite... very, very familiar with the novel and with Pennywise in the novel, which for us was a huge help. Because we went in the casting process with the book in mind. We read the novel when we were teens, we saw the miniseries much later in the game, so Tim Curry’s performance is extraordinary but that is not necessarily what we link to Pennywise immediately. For us, the Pennywise is the Pennywise in the book which is quite different. I think Bill went for that and he did an amazing, amazing performance and we gave him several tests. Again, because he’s a shape shifter, we wanted to make sure that he could play in different grades, right? And he did. he’s amazing. And what’s even more amazing is that he kept the character very unpredictable, and that’s what scares us the most, when you don’t know what way he’s going to go."

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Would you have liked to see Swinton as Pennywise the Dancing Clown, or do you think Skarsgard was the perfect IT pick?

(Via Bloody Disgusting)

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