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It: Chapter Two: Release date, cast, plot, theories, rumors

Head down to the sewer with your red balloon, Pennywise the creepy clown is coming back.

New Line Cinema

Stephen King's It crawled back onto the scene in 2017, when the first of two movie remakes came out. The second film, based like the first on King's 1,100-page 1986 bestseller, is not a sequel -- it's a continuation of the plot, taking place 27 years after the first film. Members of the Losers' Club from the first film will be recast with adult actors, though the young actors will also appear in flashback.

In the first poster released, we learn... nothing more than the title? Oh well, sometimes the absence of information is the scariest thing, letting our imaginations run wild. 

Jessica Chastain, who took on the role of Bev from younger actress Sophia Lillis, tweeted a photo showing Lillis passing the story's infamous red balloon to her older counterpart.

"If we're telling the story of adults, we are going to have flashbacks that take us back to the '80s and inform the story in the present day," director Andy Muschietti told Entertainment Weekly 

Release date, production info

The movie is being filmed in the Toronto area in August 2018. Canadian film buffs are taking photos of the action and sharing them online.  In August, the Northumberland News shared a shot of Pennywise perched on the shoulder of a Paul Bunyan statue in Memorial Park in Port Hope, Ontario. Paul and Pennywise make for a disturbing duo to be sure.

Filming is scheduled to continue through October 2018, with shooting taking place in and around Toronto and Port Hope.

Cast: Who's who?

Back to Derry with these Losers.🎈#ITMovie

A post shared by IT Movie 🎈 (@itmovieofficial) on

Plot news, rumors and theories

Readers know what happens: The plot is no secret to anyone who's read King's terrifying novel. The Losers' Club of misfit kids who fought killer clown Pennywise learn that he's back 27 years later, and they're the only ones who can attempt to stop him. The King novel wove the two age groups together, but the movies separate out the kids fighting Pennywise in the first film from their adult versions doing the same. And there were some changes to King's novel in the first film, so there may yet be some surprises, even for loyal King readers.

More about Pennywise: Back in 2017, Bill Skarsgård told Metro UK that this second film will explore his creepy character even more. "It's a different story," he said. "But I'm excited to delve in deeper to the character as there's more exploration for who Pennywise is." Specifically, the actor has discussed a disturbing scene showing a less-clown-like Pennywise in the 1600s that was shot for the first film and not used. Some are wondering if that will be included in Chapter Two.

Don't be like Mike: Director Muschietti said in 2017 that the character of Mike, the one Losers' Club member who stays in Derry, will be different from the novel. "My idea of Mike in the second movie is quite darker from the book," he told Entertainment Weekly. "I want to make his character the one pivotal character who brings them all together, but staying in Derry took a toll with him. I want him to be a junkie actually. A librarian junkie. When the second movie starts, he's a wreck."

Scenes we might see: After the first movie was filmed, producer Barbara Muschietti told journalists that some scenes didn't fit in the budget for that film, but might make Chapter Two. One scene in particular, a massacre at the Black Spot nightclub, may even open the new film. "That sequence with the Black Spot, we think it's gonna be a great opening for the next film," Muschietti said at the time. Whether or not that makes it to the opening scene, we will have to wait and see.

Tongue-twister: Screenwriter Gary Daubman told Cinema Blend in September 2018 that a bizarre element of King's book, called The Ritual of Chüd, will play a role in the film. Cinema Blend explains it like this: "The Ritual of Chüd is basically a psychic battle of wills, but is translated by the author with some very odd imagery. Specifically, the idea is that Pennywise and a member of the Losers Club each extend their tongues, overlap them, bite down, and then exchange jokes until one party laughs."

Turtle time: In the book, the ancient turtle Maturin is seen as the creator of the universe Though director Andy Muschietti was light on turtle references in the first movie, he told SyFy Wire to expect more in the second film. "I think in the second part, the turtle will try to help them," he said. "In the second movie, the turtle left a few clues to their childhood that they don't remember. They have to retrieve those memories from the summer of 1989, and that's how we jump back to 1989."

Heartbreaker: Screenwriter Gary Daubman says to bring your tissues. "The ending I think will satisfy the audience and maybe break their hearts a little bit," he told Slash Film in September 2018.

First footage: A brief clip from the film was shown at San Diego Comic-Con in July 2018. It's unlikely to make it online, but there are summaries if you must know what was shown. 

Updated on Sept. 2, 2018 with tweet showing photo of Pennywise on the Paul Bunyan statue.