Stephen King has written and published 63 novels and is renowned for his work in horror. Some of his most famous works are The Shining, The Stand, Misery and Pet Sematary. However, there is one piece that has stood out among many others and has even become the second best-selling novel written by Stephen King and that novel is IT. IT has become one of the hottest horror movies in the last decade and if anyone out there is a movie fan, then they have probably heard the question, “Which is better, the original or the remake?” The reason this particular film stands out is because of the profits it made and the attention the movie gained. Both the original and the remake made almost double every other iconic horror movie including Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th and Chucky. The question is now, “Which film is better, the classic 1990s IT or the new 2017 IT?”
Let’s start with the financial success of each movie. IT (1990) made roughly $189,700,000, in 2020, the equivalent is $372,126,957.15, but that does not even come close to what the remake made. IT (2017) made $701,800,000 and the sequel in 2019 made $473,100,000 making a total of $1,174,900,000. Financially, the 2017 version turned out to be more successful, but they also had a bigger budget. IT (1990) had a budget of only $12,000,000, making a profit of $177,700,000 when all was said and done. Meanwhile, IT (2017) had a budget of $35,000,000 and the sequel had the budget of $79,000,000 making the total $114,000,000. The total profit for the IT remake was $1,173,760,000. As anyone can see, there is a huge difference in the numbers straight from the start. However, we don’t always look at the money. We like to look at the movie magic itself.
Both versions of IT made astounding impressions on multiple generations both in fear and in a sense of comedy. Who could forget the famous, “Beep! Beep! Richie!” line from either one of the movies. The 1990s version made us laugh for the most part while the 2017 version created fear in us all. Or what about the famous opening scene with Georgie, both of the versions made us quickly sympathize for the boy and we were all scared for his life when Pennywise made his move for Georgie’s arm. Each movie made us fall in love with each character. Rotten Tomatoes had a rating for each film and they all stood pretty close to each other. IT (1990) was given a seventy percent while IT (2017) was given a whole eighty-five percent. However, the sequel only got a sixty-three percent, showing a severe lack of interest compared to the other two. Many people preferred IT (2017) due to the multiple scare tactics, while in the sequel, it is hard to get scared by the same tactics being used again and again. However, the reason IT (2017) stands out over the rest is because of the movie magic given. This version had a larger budget to do effects with and shooting horror movies has become much easier since 1990. In the 1990 version you gain a sense of closure with these characters, definitely making a sense of drama for everyone and allowing you to grow more attached with the characters rather than in the newer version.
Each movie has created their own sense of wonder, whether it was fear, love, drama or laughter, they all have gone down in history as some of the best adaptations of Stephen King’s work. It is difficult to choose which is superior because anyone can look at the ratings and financial success or they can look at their personal opinion, but one thing we cannot fail to recognize is that they are both outstanding horror films. They have each adapted something from the original novel and made a combined running time of eight hours and eleven minutes, making something to behold. I recommend any of these films, but the debate itself, I leave to the readers. So, which film is better, the original or the remake?