In both Stephen King’s original It and Warner Bros.’ recent adaptations of the novel, one of the most alarming things the Losers Club discovers about Pennywise the Dancing Clown is just how long the extra-dimensional being has been terrorizing the people of Derry, Maine. The tiny taste of Pennywise’s history featured in 2019’s It Chapter Two was one of the most memorable moments in the film, and one imagines that’s part of why HBO Max is working on a new It prequel series set in the same world.
Today, HBO Max announced that Andy Muschietti, Barbara Muschietti, and Jason Fuchs are developing Welcome to Derry, a new series that “expands the vision” that Muschietti first began crafting while directing It and It Chapter Two.
In a statement about the new series, Stephen King said that he had faith in the ability of the Muschiettis to further evolve the nightmarish concepts he originated, and the siblings stressed just how much deeper they’ve always wanted to dig into King’s It lore.
“It is an epic story that contains multitudes, far beyond what we could explore in our It movies,” the Muschiettis said. “We can’t wait to share the depths of Steve’s novel, in all its heart, humor, humanity and horror.”
Back in 2017, Bill Skarsgård told Variety that flashbacks to Derry’s past detailing Pennywise’s origins were cut from his first turn as the child-killing creature, and Muschietti told Consequence of Sound in 2019 that the decision to cut the scene boiled down to it being “a little confusing.” That might have been true for the It movies, which were focused on a specific group of people figuring out how to destroy Pennywise. But the Muschiettis are quite right about there being much more to the mythos of It than what Pennywise was up to in the late 20th century, and while there are currently no further details about Welcome to Derry, now feels like a good time to start brushing up on King’s other stories set in the fictional town.