Bill Skarsgård on Playing Pennywise the Clown

Bill talks about coming from a family of actors, traveling on movie sets with his dad as a kid and reveals what it was like re-making the new horror film It.
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Bill Skarsgård on Playing Pennywise the Clown
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Caption: Well, it's very good to have you. here. you're from sweden i understand. >> i'm from stockholm, that's . right. >> jimmy: stockholm. yes, i've heard of that. what goes on in stockholm . is it a fun place to live . >> it's a place, yeah. [ laughter ]. >> jimmy: are you still living . there . >> i've been sort of on the road. for seven years. so i'm trying to figure it out. >> jimmy: acting and going . around and whatever. >> yeah. >> jimmy: do you have a home or . are you -- your last name is . very at the least familiar to . people because your dad stellan . is an actor. >> yeah, he's an actor. >> jimmy: he was in -- he's in . so many movies. he's in "good will hunting. ". the "thor. ". movies. your brother alexander is an . actor. so is this something that your . dad encouraged you to do, to be . an actor . is this something you wanted . >> you have to, yeah. he has eight kids. and the first rule is you have . to become an actor. >> jimmy: eight children. how many of them are actors . >> half so far. so four. >> jimmy: really . >> yeah. >> jimmy: and there's a . possibility that more . skarsgards -- . >> yeah, because there's the two. ones that are very little. >> jimmy: do you hope that they . don't just to kind of reduce . some of the competition -- . >> competition, yeah. [ laughter ]. i thought i was going to be the . youngest one. and then my little brother is 5 . years younger and . better-looking -- . >> jimmy: you never know . nowadays -- . >> it's just a whole kind of . greek epic story. >> jimmy: yeah. and when you were a kid, did you. travel with your father and go . to movie sets and get to see all. that stuff . >> yeah. for sure. he would shoot -- and my dad's . career kind of took off when i . was a kid and he would -- . international career at least, . and he would shoot in all these . very exotic locations. and i -- you know, he would . bring the entire family and . pretty much break even. >> jimmy: yeah, that's a lot of . people to bring. >> yeah. it's a lot of kids to bring. and he would bring a house for . us all to come -- . >> jimmy: do you remember being . on any of those sets and seeing . something that still kind of . lasts in your mind . >> i get the question a lot . where it's like oh, you come . from an acting family and for a . kid acting is like the most . appealing job ever. like you're 8 years old and . you're on a set and your dad's . like -- your dad's your dad. but like on set he has like a . gun, thick mustache, and the . whole thing. >> jimmy: yeah, right. >> so for me it's like -- as a . kid that's what you do being a . kid, playing like with your . friends. so the appeal of this imaginary,. you know, fantastical way of . just being paid and being an . adult and acting like a child i . think was planted at a very . young age. >> jimmy: and now you get to be . a clown who eats children. >> exactly. [ laughter ]. we go full circle here. >> jimmy: we have a picture of . your look. people are scared already. were the kids on set actually . scared of you . >> i don't know. i don't know. the kids were -- because when . you work with kids like actors . you never know if they're going . to be game or not. like some kids that are actors . that have this kind of raw . talent, and some of them are . like professional actors at 12 . years of age. >> jimmy: right. yes. >> these seemed to be -- like . you didn't know going into it . but they were all like really . professional actors. this one kid, jack racer plays . eddie in the movie. it was my first day of shooting . and we kind of deliberately kept. me separated from the kids. they'd never seen a clown, . they'd never really met me, and . this is one scene and the scene . of the movie is very intense. and it was my first day. so i needed to kind of get into . character and it was like, oh, . hey there, jack, how are you . looking like that. and the scene i walk out and i . approach him and it's a really . intense scene and i'm sort of . right in his face. i'm drooling all over him. and he's crying. and we sort of block it briefly . without doing really emotion . into it. and then you know, they yell . action and i do it. and i'm doing this clown thing . and i'm screaming -- because . part of pennywise is that he . hates the kids and there's so . much anger -- . >> jimmy: most clowns do. [ laughter ]. >> and then i approach him and i. scream in his face and we're . doing the scene and he's crying . and gagging and doing this whole. thing. and in the back of my head as . we're shooting it i'm like oh, . my god, i'm traumatizing this . child. [ laughter ]. >> jimmy: yeah. >> like what am i doing . and then he -- and then they . say -- you know, they yell cut, . and i go, are you okay, jack . he goes, "i loved what you were . doing. i loved what you were doing with. the character. ". [ applause ]. >> jimmy: this is why clowns . hate children. >> yeah. and i was like, i love what . you're doing with the character . thank you, jack. >> jimmy: thank you, jack. do you think you'll keep in . touch with jack after the film . wraps . >> well, i hope he'll hire me at. one point. [ laughter ]. >> jimmy: yeah, right. well, i don't watch scary movies. because i get too scared. but i heard this one is . particularly scary. i think you've got a good one on. your hands. >> but you'll never watch it . >> jimmy: i will never see it, . no. [ laughter ]. >> you should. >> jimmy: do you like scary . movies . >> it's weird. i've kind of become this like . genre actor now it seems like. and i never really got into the . idea of getting scared. >> jimmy: yeah, me neither. i don't like it. you know why . it scares me. [ laughter ]. >> yeah, right. there's two ways to go about it. some people really enjoy and . love the sensation of fear. and i get like upset and angry. >> jimmy: i think that's what . god intended for us to . experience with fear. like when we see bears coming at. us we're not supposed to go oh, . this is awesome. >> yeah. >> jimmy: we're supposed to run. exactly. that's a good lesson for . everybody. all right. [ laughter ]. well, thank you for being here. the movie is called "it. ". .
 

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