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‘It’ prequel series will explore origins of Pennywise the Clown

By Kara Santos Published Mar 31, 2022 3:48 pm

A prequel series exploring the origin story of Pennywise the Clown from Stephen King’s horror novel It is reportedly in development at HBO Max.

As reported by Variety, the series currently called Welcome to Derry, will begin in the 1960s in the time leading up to the events of It: Part One, the 2017 film based on the Stephen King horror novel. 

Andy Muschietti, who directed It: Part One and 2019’s It: Part Two, is attached to executive produce the series along with Barbara Muschietti and Jason Fuchs. 

According to sources, Muschiettis and Fuchs developed the story for the show with Fuchs writing the script. Andy would also direct the first episode should the project go to series. Warner Bros. Television is the studio behind the project, with Warner Bros. Pictures having produced the two most recent films.

Those who have read the original Stephen King horror novel published in 1986 will know that Pennywise first appeared in Derry, Maine centuries ago after crash-landing on Earth in a meteor from some other dimension.

Since then, every 27 years or so, it awakes and feeds on the children of the area. The book is told in two main sections with the same characters at different ages: 1957-58 and 1984-85.

The upcoming prequel series will likely be set in 1961 in the same canon as the film series, which begins in 1988 and then jumps to 2016. 

The It prequel series is the latest example of HBO Max building a series component into an existing Warner Bros. film franchise. 

Colin Farrell is set to reprise the role of the Penguin from The Batman in a limited series for the streamer. There is also a series in the works about the Bene Gesserit from Dune in the works, along with several other film-based projects.

The two new It films collectively grossed over $1.1 billion at the global box office upon their release, with the first film taking place 27 years after the events of the first with a new adult cast taking over from the kids in part one. 

Before the recent films, Stephen King’s novel was previously adapted into a two-part miniseries for ABC back in 1990, featuring Tim Curry’s iconic performance as Pennywise.

Check out the evolution of the horror icon Pennywise the Clown in various movie and television apperances over the years below.