For the most part, Andy Muschietti’s IT is a faithful adaptation of the source material. Most of the differences have to do with omissions of the novel’s most controversial scenes and modernizations necessary in order to re-set the story in 1989. That doesn’t mean, however, that we can expect IT Chapter 2 to follow suit; Muschietti recently revealed in an interview with Entertainment Weekly that he’s planning big deviations, especially as they pertain to Losers Club member Mike Hanlon (played by Chosen Jacobs).
Related Article: (SPOILERS) Small Details in “IT” Only True Stephen King Fans Noticed
In the novel and 1990’s miniseries, Mike is the only member of The Losers Club who stays in Derry as an adult; he’s become intimately familiar with Pennywise’s destructive influence on the town over the centuries. Just don’t expect to see Mike as you remember him; expect to see a wreck.
Warning: Below There Be Spoilers!
“My idea of Mike in the second movie is quite darker from the book,” the filmmaker said. “I want to make his character the one pivotal character who brings them all together, but staying in Derry took a toll with him. I want him to be a junkie actually. A librarian junkie. When the second movie starts, he’s a wreck.”
“He’s not just the collector of knowledge of what Pennywise has been doing in Derry. He will bear the role of trying to figure out how to defeat him. The only way he can do that is to take drugs and alter his mind.”
Mike’s drug use, though an innovation, actually works to integrate a key element of the novel, specifically a scene in which The Losers Club participate in a sweat lodge-type ceremony.
“It resonates with what the kids do when they go to the smokehouse in the Barrens,” Andy Muschietti says. “By inhaling these fumes from the fire they have visions of It, and the origin of It, and the falling fire in the sky that crashed into Derry millions of years ago. We’ve brought that to Mike, by the end of those 30 years Mike has figured out the Ritual of Chüd.”
What do you guys think of the changes Muschietti has in mind for Mike Hanlon? Sound off in the Comments section! And if you haven’t seen the film for yourself yet, check out the trailer and synopsis below.
Official Synopsis: When children begin to disappear in the town of Derry, Maine, neighborhood kids band together to square off against Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård), an evil clown whose history of murder and violence dates back for centuries.
In addition to Skarsgård and Jacobs, IT stars Jaeden Lieberher, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard (Stranger Things), Wyatt Oleff, Jack Dylan Grazer, and Nicholas Hamilton.