With only a handful of days until Pennywise the Dancing Clown arrives in town to scare the living shit out of a whole new generation of kids, horror fans have never been more ready for Andy Muschietti's 2017 adaption of Stephen King's 1986 novel — and now the man himself has given his verdict on the finished product.
The author raved about the new movie in a recently uncovered featurette, saying that he has been to see it twice and thinks it's brilliant:
I had hopes, but I was not prepared for how good it really was. It’s something that’s different, and at the same time, it’s something that audiences are gonna relate to. They’re gonna like the characters. To me, it’s all about character. If you like the characters… if you care… the scares generally work. I’m sure my fans will enjoy the movie. I think they’re gonna REALLY enjoy the movie.
Check out the full review here:
Stephen King Hated The Shining...
What makes this gem of a review even better is that King famously doesn't mince his words about on-screen adaptions of his work. One of the most widely discussed examples of his animosity towards certain adaptions was The Shining — now considered an icon of horror cinema. King famously disliked Stanley Kubrick's imagining of the 1977 novel, mainly taking issue with the lack of Jack Torrance's character development. Speaking to Deadline back in 2016, King said:
I think The Shining is a beautiful film and it looks terrific and as I’ve said before, it’s like a big, beautiful Cadillac with no engine inside it … I kept my mouth shut at the time, but I didn’t care for it much.
King also hated the 2007 adaption of his 1999 novel Dreamcatcher, which he called a "train wreck," and the 1987 adaption of The Running Man, which he wrote under the synonym Richard Bachman. Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, King complained in his memoir On Writing that the central character was turned into a pumped-up superhero. He also has told Deadline in the same 2016 interview that he could have "done without all the Children of the Corn sequels." Same Steph, same.
But Loved Stand By Me
Having said this, he's been very positive about more well received movies based on his work. Rolling Stone asked him in 2014 what his favorite adaption had been, and he didn't have to think for long:
Stand By Me. I thought it was true to the book, and because it had the emotional gradient of the story. It was moving. I think I scared ... (director) Rob Reiner. He showed it to me in the screening room at the Beverly Hills Hotel. ... And you have to remember that the movie was made on a shoestring. It was supposed to be one of those things that opened in six theaters and then maybe disappeared. And instead it went viral. When the movie was over, I hugged him because I was moved to tears, because it was so autobiographical.
King continued to list other movie adaptions he was a fan of, including Misery, Cujo, Shawshank Redemption and Green Mile. He even positively reviewed the 2017 adaption of The Dark Tower, which was hammered by critics when it was released this summer.
What's great about this adaption in particular, is that Stephen King has been very positive about 2017's IT throughout the filming process, and even placed a solitary red balloon on the front porch of his home in Maine this week to promote its imminent release, and now this recent review only gets our hopes up even more — especially after everything we've seen so far.
It hits theaters September 8!