The McHenry Outdoor Theater couldn’t let “It” go.
A fan of the original 1990 television series based on the Stephen King novel, theater owner Scott Dehn couldn’t pass on the big-screen version premiering this Friday, even if that meant canceling this weekend’s Fall Throwback movies.
That means fans of the nostalgic drive-in can prepare for Pennywise.
The film will be shown at dusk Sept. 8 and 9, followed by a showing of “Annabelle: Creation,” at the theater, at 1510 N. Chapel Hill Road in McHenry.
“In the 20 years I’ve been doing this, I can’t remember a movie this big [at] this time of year, and I didn’t expect the opportunity to land in my lap for me to play it at the drive-in,” said Dehn, who announced the schedule change Tuesday on the McHenry Outdoor Theater – Golden Age Cinemas Facebook page.
Not everyone was thrilled with the news as that means no “1980s’ Adventure Weekend” showings of “The Princess Bride” and “The Goonies,” as originally planned.
Still, Dehn said of the feedback, “For the most part, it’s positive.”
He said he, too, had looked forward to seeing the ’80s favorites. They will be there eventually, he said.
“It’s just a logistical issue,” he said. “It’s a nightmare they happened to have been scheduled when ‘It’ had its premiere. I definitely plan on bringing them back. I just don’t know when. It would be great if we could extend the season another weekend. Weather will play a factor, as well as being able to book it.”
As for the new R-rated big-screen version of “It,” starring Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise and directed by Andy Muschietti, Dehn said the buzz around the movie has been incredible.
“I watched the trailer a little while ago,” Dehn said. “Even the previews give you nightmares.”
Repeat showings of “It” are planned for Sept. 15 and 16, with a second movie yet to be determined. Originally planned for Sept. 15 and 16 as part of the Fall Throwback were “The Blob” and “Earth Vs. Flying Saucers.”
Ticket prices for the outdoor theater are $12 for adults and $6 for children 11 and younger, seniors and military.
Starting Sept. 22, the Fall Throwback schedule is expected to return. Following is the schedule as of this week:
Sept. 22: “Rocky” followed by “Rocky II”
Sept. 23: “Rocky III” followed by “Rocky IV”
“The Wizard of Oz” followed by “E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial”
“Halloween” (original) followed by “Halloween II” (original)
“The Shining” followed by “The Exorcist”
“Frankenstein” (Universal original) followed by “Dracula” (Universal original) followed by “The Wolfman” (Universal original)
Trunk-Or-Treat Weekend. Children encouraged to dress in costumes and trick-or-treat from the trunks of vehicles representing area businesses.
“Hotel Transylvania” followed by “Hotel Transylvania 2”