James Ransone tells ET the cast suffered several injuries and started going 'bananas' filming in total darkness.
Warning: Spoilers for IT Chapter Two, which is now in theaters.
In the sequel to IT, Pennywise (Bill Skarsgård) resurfaces to once again terrorize the citizens of Derry. The demented, dancing clown's return forces the seven childhood members of the Losers Club -- now, all struggling adults spread across the country -- to reunite and face fears they have long forgotten (or attempted to bury) in the 27 years since the incidents of the first film.
IT Chapter Two sees Bill (James McAvoy), Bev (Jessica Chastain), Ben (Jay Ryan), Richie (Bill Hader), Eddie (James Ransone) and Stanley (Andy Bean) summoned back home by Mike (Isaiah Mustafa) after a young man was killed, setting things in motion for the Losers, who are determined to put an end to Pennywise once and for all.
After the Losers set off on journeys of personal discovery -- and encounters with Pennywise -- they come together for a final, epic showdown with their tormentor in a cavernous, water-filled lair. And Ransone tells ET those scenes were "f**king hard" on the cast.
"Everybody went a little bananas by the end," Ransone says of filming the underground sequence over several weeks on what he describes as a darkened, football field-sized set with flashing strobe lights. "I would walk out at 2 p.m. and be like, 'Wait, I thought it was midnight. I don't know what’s going on anymore.'"
While the actor credits director Andy Muschietti for using practical special effects -- meaning they did not film in front of a green screen -- several of his co-stars sustained multiple injuries. "Jessica split her head open," he says, revealing that it happened while Chastain was filming in a "really tight space." In addition to Chastain, Ransone says "McAvoy hurt his knee and Hader pulled a groin muscle running around."
While his co-stars didn’t disclose any onset injuries to ET, they did confirm how intense it was to film that final battle. "We were in water up to our necks," Mustafa tells ET Live, revealing his most fun day onset was when Muschietti asked him to do a sliding stunt. "He was like, 'I need you to slide behind this rock.' We put this powder down and I literally got to slide into second place."
Meanwhile, Chastain, whose character ends up trapped in a bathroom stall filling up with blood, describes the whole thing as a crazy experience. "I was slimed for 16 hours a day," she tells ET's Ashley Crossan, revealing, "It's something you don't really prepare for."
In order to capture her submersion in blood, the crew built a tank that would require draining and cleaning after every take. "So it was a long process," she says of being covered in blood, which she describes as "lube with red dye," for several days straight.
But as intense as those scenes were to film, Ransone says the toughest shoot for him was Eddie's fantasy sequence when he’s alone in the pharmacy basement. "Filming that scene sucked. That was one of the worst scenes to film."
Because the movie shot on location in a real pharmacy, the actor says he was uncomfortable with being tossed around all the real-life chemicals and bottles that were already in the basement. "That was basically an environmental disaster waiting to happen," he says before detailing the ingredients of the vomit sprayed into his face at the end of the scene. "It was brown tempera paint mixed with water and peas and carrots to give it volume and consistency and they sprayed so much of that on my face."
Filming several minutes at a time required him to hold his breath and "I almost passed out in the middle," he says.
No matter how intense the scenes were, however, Ransone says it was special being apart of a movie of that kind of scope and size -- something that's rare in the digital age of filming. "It was cool to go to work everyday and see all that stuff. They don't make stuff like that anymore, they don't make movies where you have big practical set pieces," he says. "It felt like I was part of some throwback."