Who is Bill Skarsgard? Five things to know about the actor cast as the new Pennywise in It


The big-screen adaptation of Stephen King's It has found the most famous character: Swedish actor Bill Skarsgard will play Pennywise the evil clown.

First published in 1986, It became a famous TV mini-series in 1990 starring The Rocky Horror Picture Show's Tim Curry as an unforgettably malevolent Pennywise.

In the remake, the lead character of Bill Denbrough will be played by child star Jaeden Lieberher. In the mini-series, he was portrayed by Jonathan Brandis.

Bill Skarsgard

It revolves around a heinous force in a small town in New England that takes the shape of a clown. Pennywise terrifies youngsters and brings some to an untimely doom - until a group of kids fight back.

But the evil resurfaces 30 years later - and friends who recall the terror reunite to fight It.

Pennywise has become one of the most famous characters in the horror genre and, for many, the success of this Warner Bros reboot hinged on the casting of this pivotal role.

Tim Curry played Pennywise in the TV version

Here are five things you should know about the new Pennywise.

1. He's from ABBA-land

Bill Istvan Gunther Skarsgard, to give him his full name, was born in Vallingby in 1990.

2. He has a famous family

Alexander Skarsgard with his father Stellan Skarsgard

Bill's father is hugely respected Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgard, best known for his role as Bootstrap Bill in Pirates Of The Caribbean and for playing Doctor Erik Selvig in the Marvel films Thor and The Avengers.

Bill's brothers Alexander, Gustaf, Sam, and Valter are also actors, with Alexander having the highest profile due to his portrayal of vampire Eric Northman on True Blood.

Gustaf Skarsgard is best known for his role as Floki in History Channel series Vikings.

3. He's not new to horror

Bill Skarsgard

The Swedish star first made his name as Roman Godfrey in Netflix horror series Hemlock Grove.

4. He can do sci-fi thrills

Bill's first major American film role came in sci-fi thriller The Divergent Series: Allegiant, released earlier this year.

5. He's shared a film with Keira Knightley

Anna Karenina cast members Keira Knightley and Jude Law

Bill played Captain Machouten in the film adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's famous novel Anna Karenina. Keira Knightley starred alongside Jude Law and Matthew Macfadyen.