Have you ever wondered why many people are terrified of clowns? Well, we can partly blame IT to Pennywise, the infamous shape-shifting supernatural child-eating clown in Stephen King’s 1986 novel, “It,” especially the dreaded character made a comeback through the cinematic re-adaptation of King’s novel of the same title.

Pennywise became a household name in the ‘90s when King’s more than 1,200-page novel was turned into a TV miniseries. At the time, the role of the iconic clown villain was played by actor Tim Curry, but in the 2017 version, it was played by 27-year-old Swedish actor, Bill Skarsgård.

As the movie haunts its viewers this week, here are some interesting facts we’ve learned about the “It” book and movie versions.

Skarsgård gave ‘It’ director the creeps

Did you know that many actors were intimidated by Pennywise’s role? According to Argentine and “Mama” filmmaker Andrés Muschietti, many turned down the role because of Curry’s iconic portrayal in the ‘90s, however, Skarsgård was brave enough to take the role.

Taking the online reactions into consideration, the Swedish star might have given justice to the role.

In fact, Muschietti revealed that Skarsgård already gave him “the creeps” during the auditions.

Muschietti also noted that Skarsgård can be very “scary” as he contorts his face in “very weird ways.” He added that Alexander Skarsgård’s brother could also voluntarily move his eyes “independently of each other.”

Barbara Muschietti, Andrés’ sister, also revealed that Bill “does something with his lip that’s freaking impossible.” Barbara even praised Skarsgård for being a “great actor,” as per Entertainment Weekly.

Bill, however, admitted that getting out of his character was similar to “exorcism.” In an interview, he described his role as “extreme, inhumane” and more than a “sociopath” but going back to his normal life following his portrayal in “It” made him feel weird.

The actor added he even had “really disturbing dreams” about King’s iconic character for two weeks.

He explained it was like a “slow exorcism” to get out of the character completely, Daily Express noted.

Most controversial scene

If you have read the novel and watched the latest movie version, you might be wondering why the controversial sex scene among the six male members and the sole female follower of the Losers’ Club wasn’t depicted in the movie. Muschietti told Collider that the particular scene was “unnecessary” in the film, saying the depiction of the group sex in the novel was just a “metaphor” of the group’s journey from childhood to adulthood.

Story of Friendship

More than a tale of horror, “It” also tells a story of friendship among seven kids who are considered losers by the bullies in Derry, Maine.

In the novel, King followed their journey as individuals and as a group.

Book details

Did you know that Pennywise has another name? In the novel, the Losers call the villain as Robert Gray, a shape-shifting supernatural entity that came to Earth before the emergence of humanity. According to Deccan Herald, it can hunt and kill any human but the vicious entity prefers to kill and eat children because “they’re easier to frighten” and fear makes them quite tasty.

Another interesting book detail is the fact that “It” is connected to other King’s novels. If you’ve read the novel, you might have an idea about it, especially when you came across the word “Macroverse,” which has a connection to King’s “The Dark Tower” novel.

Coulrophobia is real

Meanwhile, many people do have an aversion towards clowns, not just because of Pennywise. In fact, JOE revealed that a study found that clowns are “universally disliked” by kids, while its makeup apparently has an “emotionally uneasy” effect on people that is why there are really some whose suffering Coulrophobia or the irrational fear of clowns.