losers club kids ben

Ben Hanscom

The Kid We Know: The lonely, chubby, creative kid who hides away in the library to avoid bullies (and learns all about Derry’s terrible history in the process).

The Adult We’ll Meet: A lauded and creative architect who lost all of that excess weight after taking up running.

casting adult losers club ethan embry

Option 1: Ethan Embry

Sometimes, kids grow up in surprising ways. In the pages of Stephen King’s It, chubby and shy little Ben Hanscom grows into a something of a stud, burning off his weight through running and weaponizing his imagination to become a successful architect. So why not cast an actor whose transformation from child actor into adulthood has proven equally surprising? In genre movies like Cheap Thrills and The Devil’s Candy, Ethan Embry has embraced horrifying material with gusto, undergoing physical transformations that make you do a double take. This is the kid from Empire Records and Vegas Vacation? Embry has very little in common with Jeremy Ray Taylor, but that’s kind of the point. Ben grows up to reinvent himself completely on a physical level and trying to find that shy, fat kid in this handsome and strapping guy is like trying to find that former child actor in a performer who has proven himself willing to swing for the fences in some very dark material. (Jacob Hall)

Josh Hartnett It

Option 2: Josh Hartnett

Here’s another choice I think strikes a nice balance between being a good fit for the character and actually being achievable for the production without racking up extra millions in actor salaries. Scoff if you must, but Hartnett is a talented actor who works much better in supporting roles than as the leading man Hollywood tried to turn him into a decade or so ago. (Though I will always and forever stick up for his star turn in Lucky Number Slevin.) I’ve seen hints of the sweetness Jeremy Ray Taylor brought to young Ben Hanscomb in other Hartnett roles, and while I haven’t seen any of Penny Dreadful myself, I’ve heard he fit right in to that show’s supernatural world. I’m convinced he could be a good fit for the twisted world of Derry, too. (Ben Pearson)


Option 3: Jerry O’Connell

Who better to play the adult version of the chubby kid in the Losers’ Club than the actor who played the chubby kid in the group of friends from the adaptation of Stephen King’s Stand By Me? Sure, Jerry O’Connell may not be considered to be the stud that he was a decade or so ago, and his career isn’t exactly at a high point, but he’s still a former fat kid who grew up to be a handsome dude. It gives him an opportunity to show off that he’s still quite the solid actor, and it’s a cool, meta bit of casting. Don’t forget that Jerry O’Connell already has horror sequel experience having played Sidney Prescott’s boyfriend in Scream 2. (Ethan Anderton)

losers club kids richie

Richie Tozier

The Kid We Know: The loudmouth jokester with a bad accent or dumb joke for just about every occasion.

The Adult We’ll Meet: A popular radio DJ (stand-up comedian in the TV miniseries) known for his large collection of absurd and hilarious voices…and for his number of failed relationships.

casting adult losers club bill hader

Option 1: Bill Hader

As Richie Tozier, Finn Wolfhard steals all of his scenes in It – being a class clown with a mouth that doesn’t know when to stop moving has its advantages when it’s endearing. And since the character grows up to make a living at being a total ham, it’s only appropriate that they cast the biggest ham of them all: Bill Hader. The Saturday Night Live veteran is one of the most talented impersonators and mimics of the past few decades, so there is no one better suited to play the grown-up Richie, who makes his living behind a microphone with his endlessly malleable voice. While he’s not widely known for his dramatic fare, Hader is has proven himself exceptional when he steps outside of the genre where he made his name. Plus, watching someone as effortlessly funny as Hader channel their fear on screen, to watch his wisecracks fail in the face of pure evil, should be harrowing. (Jacob Hall)

Ike Barinholtz It

Option 2: Ike Barinholtz

Through movies like Neighbors and his work on The Mindy Project, Barinholtz has proven himself to be a go-to guy for funny one-liners and cheesy jokes, which fits Richie Tozier like a glove. Barinholtz could handle the comedic aspect of the character without breaking a sweat, and I’ve felt like he’s been overdue to show up in a horror movie for quite some time, so this seems is a perfect way to kill two birds with one stone. There’s a thin line between making goofy faces and making terrified ones, and I think playing an adult Richie would be a good opportunity for Barinholtz to expand his range and bring to life a character so memorably embodied by Finn Wolfhard in Chapter One. (Ben Pearson)


Option 3: Kyle Mooney

At 33 years old, Kyle Mooney is a bit on the younger side to be playing a character in their late 30s. But all it takes is some five o’clock shadow and he looks much older. Mooney is known for playing socially awkward and quirky characters on Saturday Night Live and more recently the outstanding indie Brigsby Bear. But he also has a more bombastic, energetic side that he’s brought out on several occasions that would fit in line perfectly with the radio shock jock personality that Richie takes on in the book. Plus, Mooney has an extensive improv background, and he can spout off plenty of great one-liners to keep up with Finn Wolfhard’s performance from the first movie. (Ethan Anderton)

losers club kids eddie

Eddie Kaspbrak

The Kid We Know: The small, skinny kid whose fear of the world has been instilled in him by an overly protective mother who is doing more harm than good.

The Adult We’ll Meet: The owner of a limousine company, married to an overbearing woman with shades of his own mother, whose childhood fear of sickness and disease has only grown more stifling over the years.

casting adult losers club adam scott

Option 1: Adam Scott

One of the most pleasant surprises of It is Jack Dylan Grazer’s Eddie. On the page, Eddie is very much a sad sack, a kid who has been raised to fear every speck of dirt and blade of grass by his fearful mother. But Grazer transforms Eddie’s neuroses into comedic gold, finding the sad and sweet humor in the character. So why not cast a comedian in the part and let the sadness come between laughs? Why not cast the great Adam Scott, whose deadpan is a secret weapon of so many movies? He’d be a departure from the page, but he’d certainly be in line with how he’s portrayed in the first movie. Plus, I’d love to see Scott get flung into a real horror movie after flirting with the genre in Little Evil. (Jacob Hall)

Topher Grace It

Option 2: Topher Grace

Jack Dylan Grazer’s neurotic take on Eddie was my favorite of all the young actors’ performances in Chapter One, so I wanted to make sure whoever takes over this role can deliver similarly frenzied behavior as an adult. Topher Grace strikes me as that kind of actor, capable of firing off jokes while puffing on an inhaler and depicting anxiety with a dash of heroism when needed. In the book, adult Eddie drives a limo for work and is married to a woman who reminds him of his mother (King clearly had some weird Oedipal stuff on his mind at the time he wrote this), and I’m picturing a beleaguered Topher Grace behind the wheel, reluctantly realizing he has to return to Derry to face his biggest childhood fear once again. (Ben Pearson)


Option 3: Fred Savage

The eccentricity and fast-talking personality that Jack Dylan Grazer brought to life as Eddie in the first chapter of It is only going to get worse with age. Personally, I can’t think of anyone better than Fred Savage to take the role of Eddie, allowing him to further blossom as an actor from the childhood roles he became famous for in the late 1980s and early 1990s, especially The Wonder Years. Savage’s face is enough to make me think he’s the perfect adult to play a grown up Eddie, but it’s also his manner of speaking that is the real selling point for me. Plus, it’s been awhile since we’ve seen Savage do anything like this, and it would be a fascinating bit of casting. (Ethan Anderton)

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