Cary Fukunaga has opened up on why his reboot of Stephen King’s ‘It‘ has been shelved. We knew three months ago that Fukunaga walked away from the project and had vague details of creative differences for the split. Well, we now know a little bit about what those differences of vision for the film actually were! While both sides have been pretty quiet on why they parted ways, Fukunaga shares his side in a new interview with Variety.
“I was trying to make an unconventional horror film. It didn’t fit into the algorithm of what they knew they could spend and make money back on based on not offending their standard genre audience. Our budget was perfectly fine. We were always hovering at the $32 million mark, which was their budget. It was the creative that we were really battling. It was two movies. They didn’t care about that. In the first movie, what I was trying to do was an elevated horror film with actual characters. They didn’t want any characters. They wanted archetypes and scares. I wrote the script. They wanted me to make a much more inoffensive, conventional script. But I don’t think you can do proper Stephen King and make it inoffensive.”
With that in mind you have to admit that many of King’s adaptations couldn’t be thought of as proper but are at least enjoyable. I do have to agree, though, that to make the emotional investment in the characters to show how Pennywise is truly traumatizing them takes time:
“The main difference was making Pennywise more than just the clown. After 30 years of villains that could read the emotional minds of characters and scare them, trying to find really sadistic and intelligent ways he scares children, and also the children had real lives prior to being scared. And all that character work takes time. It’s a slow build, but it’s worth it, especially by the second film. But definitely even in the first film, it pays off.”
I think he hits the nail directly on the head and if the build up was done right, it could pay in spades with a truly creeped out audience. The more Fukunaga says about his vision for the film, the more I was actually feeling okay with a remake happening.
With Andy Muschietti (‘Mama’) now on board to direct for New Line it seems they’ve found someone who will go with a less intensive vision than Fukunaga had. If his statement above is accurate it doesn’t look like we’re in for the film that Stephen King gave his blessing to. Could this end up being the adaptation he finally hates more than ‘The Shining‘? Only time will tell!
What do you think of the differences in direction between Fukunaga and the studio? Do you think we would have been better off with his or what the studio seems to want to give us? Share your thoughts below!