It trailer sets new online viewing record

Ben Bussey
UK Movies Writer
Nightmares ahoy! Bill Skarsgård in ‘It’ (credit: New Line Cinema)

We knew the big screen adaptation of Stephen King’s ‘It’ was eagerly anticipated – but it looks like audience appetite for the horror epic is even greater than we thought, as the trailer for the upcoming New Line Cinema release from ‘Mama’ director Andrés Muschietti has just set a new record for views within its first 24 hours online.

The ‘It’ trailer, giving our first glimpses of Bill Skarsgård in action as the demonic clown Pennywise, was viewed a mind-blowing 197 million times within one day after being released this past Wednesday. This easily surpasses the previous record for most views in its first 24 hours set by ‘Fast & Furious 8,’ which amassed 139 million views within the same time period.

EW report that 81 million of these views came from Facebook US alone, where the trailer was shared 1.8 million times. These views have of course only gone up to over 246 million within a day and a half, including over 15 million views of the trailer on the official New Line Cinema Youtube channel.

Seems like all that ‘killer clown’ mania of the past year is really set to pay off for New Line and parent company Warner Bros  – although for fans of Stephen King’s novel, the wait for the story to make the big screen has been considerably longer.

Credit: New Line Cinema

Whilst King’s massive 1986 novel (well over 1,000 pages) has been filmed once before in the 1990 TV mini-series celebrated for Tim Curry’s turn as Pennywise, a big screen take has been in development since 2009. Things didn’t get hot until 2012, when Cary Fukunaga (‘Beasts of No Nation,’ TV’s ‘True Detective’) signed on to direct.

However, Fukunaga wound up dropping out in May 2015 citing creative differences, to be replaced by Muschietti two months later. Explaining his decision to quit in September of that year, Fukunaga claimed the studio wanted an “inoffensive, conventional” take on the material.

Still, based on the trailer, it certainly looks like Muschietti’s film has captured the malevolent spirit of ‘It’ quite beautifully (and terrifyingly) – although we’ll have to wait until it opens in UK cinemas on 8 September before we know for sure.

In case you missed it, watch the trailer below – if you dare…!

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