Stephen King IT Gets a Terrifying Anime Style Makeover

Stephen King IT: A Thematic Horror Story

Published in 1986, the Stephen King IT novel was his 22nd published book. The next year it won the British Fantasy Award. IT is more than just a straight horror story. The novel deals with quite a few heavy themes such as the power of memory, childhood trauma, the ugliness lurking behind small-town quaintness and overcoming evil through mutual trust and sacrifice. 

The best-selling novel was adapted in 1990 as a mini series with Tim Curry taking the titular role of Pennywise the clown. For many that is the best adaptation. Released this year, the new IT film has taken over theaters. It has already grossed over $270 million in the United States alone. Naturally fans have taken to the internet to create parodies, memes and fan art.

Everything Must Get an Anime Makeover

We’ve seen Disney princesses, video game characters and more get the anime makeover. Naturally someone had to take Stephen King’s IT and draw it in the anime style!

Artist Mike Anderson (aka Mikuloctopus) illustrated Pennywise in that classic anime style. He still looks just as creepy as ever. Mike created depicted two memorable scenes from the film: the opening sewer scene and the balloon scene. 

Stephen King IT | anime style | Pennywise | Mike Anderseon Stephen King IT | anime style | Pennywise | Mike Anderseon

Mike has re-imagined quite a few other pop culture characters in the animated style. Seeing these IT illustrations and his other works makes us believe we could have anime adaptations of everything. Check out more of Mike’s work on his website.

Even if we don’t get a full animated IT film, fans have more to look forward to. The new IT will get a sequel film set for release in 2019. The sequel will dive more into the adult lives of the kids and how they cope with the after effects of the trauma with Pennywise. 

Would you watch a full anime of the Stephen King IT series? Which is more menacing, the live-action or the anime version?

An Interview With the Artist

Since these illustrations have gone viral, Moviepilot interviewed Mike about the art.

Q: What drew you to IT?

“I watched the original ‘IT’ miniseries back when I was a kid. I’d been following news of the ‘IT’ remake for the longest time, and in anticipation for the new movie I read the entire book. So after re-watching the miniseries, reading the book and then seeing the new 2017 movie, I had a lot of Pennywise on my mind. Drawing him was actually very therapeutic. I also think the design of the new Pennywise is really amazing. Very sleek and chilling, without being a typical ‘Scary Clown’.”

Q: Why did you decide to express your love for the movie by transposing IT to a different genre?

“I thought the new Pennywise design was very ‘anime’ looking to begin with. The lines on his face reminded me of Frieza from Dragonball Z. One thing I like to do occasionally is to see how different movies or TV shows might look as an anime. I felt like ‘IT’ would be perfect for an anime adaptation.”

Q: In your opinion, what is it about anime that makes translating something into this medium so appealing?

“Besides the fact that I thought the new Pennywise design already had a very ‘anime’ feel to it. The concepts and subject matter of the ‘IT’ book would be perfect for anime. There seem to be fewer limits in anime. Crazy concepts and unique storytelling are almost expected. The ‘IT’ book delves into mythologies and settings that a live action movie would never have the time or budget to fully realize. And even if they could it may not appeal to audiences. Taking ‘IT’ to an anime series would ground the story in a genre where traveling between dimensions and giant monsters are more accepted.”



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