It: Chapter Two Screens Terrifying, Exciting Footage at SDCC

pennywise it movie 2017 bill skarsgard
(Photo: Warner Bros.)

On Wednesday night, Warner Bros. kicked off San Diego Comic-Con 2019 with their third annual ScareDiego event. This year, It: Chapter Two took centerstage with a Q&A featuring the upcoming film's cast hosted by Conan O'Brien and exclusive looks at the movie. Director Andy Muschietti was accompanied by James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Jay Ryan, Bill Hader, James Ransone, and Isaiah Mustafa.

The standouts of the panel were McAvoy and Hader, often showing off solid real world chemistry and chalking up the best landed laughs of the night. The goal here, though, wasn't necessarily to scare up some laughs in the Spreckels Theater. Though that probably helped the ultimate mission, the true end goal was to get the audience excited for It: Chapter Two and start spreading some positive buzz bets the movie's September release. Mission: accomplished.

Not only did the presentation kick off with a thrilling new trailer for the movie which will hit the Internet on Thursday morning but it also unveiled a trio of never-before-seen clips. As to follow the studio's request to preserve spoilers, only brief descriptions of those sequences can be offered here.

Between the three clips, the messages of It: Chapter Two's tone was clear. This movie is going to be fun, laughs will be delivered in hefty doses thanks to its cast's timing both as an ensemble and on their own. However, more importantly, this movie is going to be scary. Creative beats from Muschietti had some members of the audience covering their eyes as heads literally rolled, morphing into somehow creepier other creations from Muschietti who is capitalizing well on the groundwork laid by Stephen King.

The Loser's Club hasn't been together in years and, in fact, can't remember much of what happened or each other. This doesn't mean the haunted town of Derry and its beloved Pennywise has forgotten them. In fact, quite the opposite. Through the first couple of clips, the gang is all but forced to reunite in a delightfully organic for the plot fashion involving Mike (Isaiah Mustafa) becoming somewhat of a detective, following cases of Derry folks going missing which is a trend the group should be familiar with. Meanwhile Pennywise is sure to bring out the biggest fears and guilts of McAcoy's Bill in another. A sequence with McAvoy in a funhouse plays mental tricks not only on the character but also the audience, creatively spinning cameras, swinging neon clowns around, and using mirrors to build a claustrophobic environment.

Given McAvoy's performance, it should come as no surprise that his effort caused six months worth of tendinitis, as he revealed during the panel. The cost of truly selling a terrifying scene, which McAvoy said was, "absolute horrific."

In short, the three sequences were each centered in one location with one message. The first was at a Chinese restaurant, reuniting the group. The second was a fair, as Bill's guilt forced him to chase a kid into a funhouse, leading to a terrifying encounter. The third and final brought the group back to the Nevillle house, culminating with the line, "Let's kill this f---ing clown," from Hader.

Based on the footage shown off in San Diego on Wednesday, Warner Bros. and Muschietti appear to have identified what worked in 2017's It and exploited those elements for Chapter Two.

"Chapter One is a movie about friendship and the power of unified belief," Muschietti explained. "The second part is more about trrauma. We will discover things that we didn't know about the Losers that started in that summer of 1989."

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It: Chapter Two hits theaters on September 6.