The wait is over. Cinedigm’s much-anticipated documentary, Pennywise the Story of IT, is finally available on VOD platforms and Screambox. The doc made its world premiere at the Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival in Spain and its UK premiere at FrightFest last fall before landing stateside for its US premiere at Panic Fest in May.
The film features exclusive interviews with many of the original cast members including Tim Curry, Seth Green, and Emily Perkins. Also featured is Adam Faraizl, who played the asthma-ridden character of Eddie Kaspbrak.
Some of Faraizl’s other credits include Lonesome Dove and RoboCop 2 before he retired from acting at age 14.
We sat down with Faraizl and discussed everything from Stephen King to which parts of IT he thought were the most frightening.
Did you learn anything in particular from Tim while on set?
I would say yes. Not any direct direction given but just watching someone of his caliber work. The most important thing that I learned from working with Tim was that he could turn it off and on at any given time. When the cameras weren’t rolling, he would be asking different questions and figuring stuff out in his head. Then when the cameras would roll, he would instantly snap back into character and be a completely different person. I realized then that this was how I wanted to do it.
The bond between the characters in the miniseries is very evident. Was it like that off set too?
Oddly enough, yes. Meeting up with everybody more recently and talking to them, I realized we actually did a lot more stuff together than even I had remembered. We would hang out at the hotel pool pretty frequently all together to unwind at the end of the day. There were a couple of bonding dinners they invited us to, cast dinners just for the kids and adults. I still have pictures of that somewhere. I remember us taking the Sky Train to maybe the Metro Town Mall and going to the arcades. We didn’t always hang out, we were always exploring the city on our own, but we did quite a few things together.
How long did you and the other kids film for?
I want to say 6 weeks. That could be wrong though.
Is there something about the making of IT that people might not know?
Aside from what’s covered in the documentary, I can’t personally think of something.
When you were being interviewed for the documentary, did you remember anything from set you hadn’t thought about in a while?
The only thing I can think of that I remembered during the actual interview process, was that at some point I asked the set designer if I could take a souvenir from the shower set. If you look at the shower set, there is a line of black tile wrapped all the way around the center of the white tiling. I took one of those tiles. I had forgotten I had taken that as a souvenir. Also, one of the fake foam rocks that we were throwing at Henry Bowers. Those disappeared over the course of my childhood and then I recently found them while cleaning out our Texas house.
What do you think is the scariest part about the miniseries? Any particular scene?
When we are all fighting in the Centrum and the weird tentacle comes out after we pull the hand off, that was good. I distinctly remember when the lights come through the holes in the pipe and then Belch gets sucked in. That was pretty rough. Also, the part in the Chinese restaurant where all the fortune cookies turn into various types of disgusting things. That was pretty solid.
Over 30 years after IT was released, why do you think it still makes such an impression on people?
A lot of reasons. Stephen King is such a classic in the horror industry. There was a lot of concentration on character building and the backstory in the miniseries version. Even though it was edited from the book and for television, you really get a chance to know the characters and see why they are interacting and why they are The Losers Club. Much like a lot of King novels, you get a sense of why they are bonding. It’s a good story, it’s not just a jump-scary gory horror thing. There is quite a bit of excellent storytelling being done there. I think that’s one of the reasons it continues to resonate today.
Now that you are into music, would you ever compose a horror film?
I would consider it. But would prob ask my friend to do it. I was temporarily working for Gameworks at the end of the pandemic while things were still opening up. One of the people I was working with was a big horror buff and had a ton of excellent stuff under his belt already. We did a short film during one of the last days of Gameworks for fun and he wrote a theme song for it. It sounds like a horror theme song. I would consider it, but he would be much better than me.
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