Nearly five years after the first of the two “IT” movies became the highest-grossing horror movie of all time, TV producers are ready to revisit Derry, the film’s primary location that Stephen King based on Bangor, with a new series.
The series, with a working title of “Welcome to Derry,” will reportedly tell the origin story of Pennywise, the immortal monster at the center of King’s iconic 1986 book. Derry is King’s fictional version of Bangor, his full-time home during the 1980s and 1990s, with many locations in the book based directly on real-life places in the city.
HBO Max has started developing the series, which reportedly will be set in the 1960s, leading up to the events in the first movie, Variety magazine reported. Pennywise, whose origins the series will explore, is the demonic being who most often takes the form of a clown and in the book and movies has lived in tunnels and sewers below Derry since ancient times.
Neither the film version of “IT” nor its 2019 sequel was filmed in Bangor, aside from some establishing shots that were sprinkled throughout the movies. Rather, Derry was recreated in the Canadian town of Port Hope, Ontario, photos of which can be seen on the Instagram account Discovery Derry, which documented the filming around town.
Many real-life Bangor landmarks, like the Bangor Public Library, the Paul Bunyan statue and the Kenduskeag Stream were recreated for the movie in Port Hope. Though the new “Welcome to Derry” series has not yet been greenlit for production, we can only hope that the real-life Derry might make more than a cursory appearance in the new show, if it makes it to air.
“IT” director Andy Muschietti is reportedly set to be executive producer of the new series, alongside his sister and fellow “IT” producer Barbara Muschietti. If it goes into production, the show would be just the latest of multiple TV shows based on King books that have premiered in the past two years, including “The Outsider” on HBO, “The Stand” on Paramount+, “Lisey’s Story” on Apple TV+ and “Chapelwaite” on Epix.