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What Really Gave Jaeden Martell Nightmares While Filming IT - Exclusive

Jaeden Martell's star has been rapidly rising since his acclaimed film debut alongside Bill Murray, Melissa McCarthy, and Naomi Watts in 2014's hit comedy St. Vincent. That means bigger roles and even more responsibility, including the title role in his new film The True Adventures of Wolfboy.

Martell's real breakthrough was probably his performance in 2017's IT, in which he effectively led the ensemble cast that made up the Losers Club, doing justice to the role of Bill Denbrough for fans of Stephen King's classic novel and 1990 television adaptation.

At the center of the terror in IT, of course, is Pennywise the Dancing Clown, played by Tim Curry in the TV version and Bill Skarsgård in the 2017 movie and its 2019 sequel. And while the sight of Pennywise is enough to induce nightmares in anybody, Martell told Looper in an exclusive interview that seeing the murderous clown in the flesh actually wasn't the reason he lost sleep at night.

A Penny(wise) for your thoughts

"[Pennywise] never gave me nightmares, but I've had lots of stress dreams about working in general and just being on set and doing something wrong and forgetting a line or something," Martell shares with Looper. "But as far as nightmares, I haven't had any about Bill Skarsgård."

In retrospect, Martell says he's come to appreciate Skarsgård's performance under the heavy prosthetics of Pennywise since his role in The True Adventures of Wolfboy required hours of prep and helped him develop a new acting discipline.

In the film, Martell plays Paul — a youth stricken with a rare malady that causes him to grow excess hair on his face and body — who embarks on an adventure to find his estranged mother when he receives a mysterious gift for his 13th birthday.

Also starring John Turturro, Chris Messina, and Chloe Sevigny, The True Adventures of Wolfboy is now available on video on demand.