An 'IT' prequel is headed to HBO Max to haunt your dreams

The gift you never knew you needed: an 'IT' prequel. HBO Max plans to explore how the terrifying Pennywise came to be

BILL SKARSGÅRD as Pennywise in New Line Cinema's horror thriller "IT," a Warner Bros. Pictures release. (2017)
(Image credit: PictureLux / The Hollywood Archive / Alamy Stock Photo)

This is Pennywise like you've never seen him before: an IT prequel, HBO Max's rumored new project, is planning to dig deep into the origins of the infamous killer clown. 

It's never too soon for the best Halloween movies, and we must say, we're definitely craving a scare right about now. Though the streamer has been keeping us busy with the likes of Minx and Moonshot, we're all for indulging in a spooky state of mind.

And it doesn't come spookier than Pennywise. Sewers and red balloons will never be the same because of the immortal force. Every 27 years, he reemerges to terrorize (and eat) the children of a small Maine town. But how exactly did a circus staple become everyone's worst nightmare? We're about to find out.

The prequel, allegedly titled Welcome to Derry, is flipping the script on the horror franchise. Set to begin in the 1960s, it will all lead up to our first introduction to Pennywise: sewer stays, blood-soaked bathroom sinks, wicked grins and all. (Definitely a change of pace from those Bridgerton prequels.)  

While suburban Maine seems like a soothing respite, in the hand of Stephen King, fictional Derry is the scariest place on earth, and no one is safe—especially the town's most vulnerable.

'IT' prequel: HBO Max

The Ankler was the first to break the news on this exciting (yet terrifying) new chapter of the story, stating that the show is currently in development. However, neither HBO Max nor Stephen King has yet to confirm the news. As you might've expected, we're patiently standing by for more info on the series. 

Andy Muschietti, who directed It: Part One and It: Part Two will executive produce the show alongside his wife, Barbara, and Jason Fuchs, who will also be working on the script. This will be done via their Double Dream production company and Warner Bros. Television. Considering IT is responsible for some of the best Halloween movie quotes of all time—"we all float down here"—we're particularly excited for the writing...and to see how everyone came to float in the first place. 

Judging from the direction of this project, we sense a history lesson of sorts, which we've been treated to before in the books, movies and the ABC miniseries with Tim Curry. However, fans have always had questions about how Pennywise ended up as Pennywise, so this presents the perfect opportunity to really figure it all out...if you're daring enough to tune in.

'IT' prequel cast: who will star?

Though a cast and a release date have yet to be revealed, we're anxious to see who the faces will be behind the Losers Club (when in fact they are a focus of the show), and of course, the man behind the clown makeup. As soon as more information becomes available, you horror-movie fanatics will be the first to know. 

In the meantime, indulge in TV's affairs of the heart. If horror isn't really your thing—we disagree but completely understand—do be sure to catch up with all of our coverage on Bridgerton season 2: the love triangle, the enemies-to-lovers slow burn, the outfits and more. 

Mayfair, London, is certainly a dream compared to Derry, Maine—that, friends, is definitely a nightmare.

Danielle Valente
Digital News Writer

Need a TV show recommendation? Maybe a few decor tips? Danielle, a digital news writer at Future, has you covered. Her work appears throughout the company’s lifestyle brands, including My Imperfect Life, Real Homes, and woman&home. Mainly, her time is spent at My Imperfect Life, where she’s attuned to the latest entertainment trends and dating advice for Gen Z.

Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids, where she got to experience the best of the city from the point of view of its littlest residents. Before that, she was a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, and amNewYork, to name a few. 

When Danielle’s not writing, you can find her testing out a new recipe, reading a book (suggestions always welcome), or rearranging the furniture in her apartment…again.