Pennywise may not be the scariest thing in Derry, Maine, after all. Audiences who have taken in It: Chapter Two were a little surprised to see a familiar face pop up in the film: none other than Stephen King himself, who appeared as the proprietor of the store Secondhand Rose. Screenwriter Gary Dauberman revealed that he wrote the part of Secondhand Rose's owner with King in mind, but stopped just short of actually spelling out his preference in the screenplay. He told Inverse:
"I wrote him into the script just along the lines of 'looks like Stephen King' early on in the drafts. You know, just kind of planting the seed."
Dauberman was unsure if King would be willing to take the time to cameo in the film. Luckily, while King's high-profile cameo appearances may have come in the '80s and '90s, he's always been pretty game to pop up in adaptations of his material. It's just that in recent years, he's mostly stuck to the small screen.
King's very first movie appearance was in a film not even adapted from one of his novels: it was in the bizarre 1981 fantasy flick Knightriders, which was directed by his friend George A. Romero. King and Romero would go on to collaborate on the excellent horror anthology film Creepshow the following year, and in that film, King didn't just cameo; he actually starred in one of its segments, "The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill."
Since then, King has turned in cameos in no fewer than fifteen films and television series. He cameoed in 1986's Maximum Overdrive, which is also the only film that King ever directed. After that, he appeared in 1987's Creepshow 2, 1989's Pet Sematary, and plenty more. Dauberman related that he was content to just keep his fingers crossed and hope that King would agree to the cameo. However, Andy Muschietti revealed that he was down to do a little more bargaining in the interest of making it happen. Keep watching the video to see the truth behind that surprise cameo in It: Chapter Two!