In order to pay proper respects to Stephen King's iconic 1,000-page novel IT, director Andy Muschietti opted to divide the story into two films. The theatrical ending of the first movie ended with a fair amount of resolution, with the Losers' Club seemingly finding moments of peace after an arduous ordeal. The alternate ending, however, teased that their problems had only just begun, as you can see in the video below.
Rather than ending with the Losers' Club's solidarity with one another, the above ending hints at how the club got fractured shortly after they confronted Pennywise and, after skulking into the shadows, we get hints of the entity's return with the shot of the storm drain as rain begins to fall.
Audiences unaware of the IT story might not have known what was in store for the Losers' Club, as nothing about the narrative implied we would see these characters in the future. Prior to the credits rolling, however, audiences discovered this was merely the first chapter of a larger narrative.
The above ending was likely cut as to keep the original film a singular experience. The original story features a narrative that jumps between two different timelines, focusing on the Losers' Club as young kids and when they reconvene 27 years later to once again wage battle with the entity that lurks the town of Derry, Maine.
In 1990, a live-action adaptation miniseries debuted which mirrored this fractured narrative structure. Muschietti instead focused specifically on the young characters, which was an effective strategy at connecting audiences with these young characters, making their challenges and struggles feel all the more emotional.
This most recent adaptation became one of the most-anticipated movies of the year, yet the fate of the film was uncertain in its early stages. Back in 2015, both original director Cary Fukunaga and original Pennywise actor Will Poulter parted ways from the project, seemingly cementing the film's doom.
When the film's trailer premiered, it quickly shattered a variety of records, eventually going on to earn more than $120 million in its opening weekend. Despite that success, Warner Bros. didn't officially announce a second film was on the way until days after its release, despite everyone involved with the project and audiences knowing this first film only told half the story.
You can grab IT on Blu-ray, with the above alternate ending and a variety of deleted scenes, on January 9.