Everything may float down in the sewers but not everything floats in Hollywood. Case in point, director Cary Fukunaga’s unconventional horror approach to New Line Cinema’s “It” remake.
Fukunaga — who gained mass critical acclaim for his impeccable work on HBO’s “True Detective” — left the project earlier this year with The Hollywood Reporter citing budgetary concerns and creative differences as the reason for the split. However, according to an interview with Variety, Fukunaga admits his departure stemmed from the latter and not the former.
“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,” Fukunaga told Variety. “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.”
Split into two films, the adaptation tells the tale of a group of misfit children who come together one summer to confront the mysterious, shape-shifting monster (Will Poulter) that plagued their town, most frequently in the form of a clown. “It” was adapted in 1990 as a television miniseries, starring Tim Curry as Pennywise the Clown. However, it wasn’t until 2009 that Warner Bros. began its push to bring the decades-spanning, 900-page novel to the big screen.
“In the first movie, what I was trying to do was an elevated horror film with actual characters,” Fukunaga continued. “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.
“Every little thing was being rejected and asked for changes. Our conversations weren’t dramatic. It was just quietly acrimonious. We didn’t want to make the same movie.”
The studio is now looking to hire a new director with a fresh script.
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