Tim Curry sees movie makeup as an excuse to let go completely


That choppy pace would be vital for Curry’s next made-up role as Pennywise. The most remarkable thing about Curry’s Pennywise is how the actor manages to look so little like himself. The Dancing Clown has a brusque New York accent, totally different from Curry’s own British, and a harder laugh than Curry’s usual laugh.

As Pennywise, Curry pauses for individual words to leave a bigger impact. Take his deadly statement to Georgie (Tony Dakota), “Down here… You’ll… Float… Too!”, or his threat to the Losers Club, “I’m all… you ever . . . had fear !” As for the words themselves, Curry draws them, especially the vowels. Whenever Pennywise promises his prey that it will float, Curry pronounces it as “floooaaatt”. Pennywise appreciates his work and Curry appreciates his.

Since Curry relies so heavily on his voice, it’s no surprise that he’s become a prolific voice actor. In Curry’s voice roles, he samples from the same bag of tricks he used as Pennywise. As Ben Ravencroft in “Scooby-Doo! And the Witch’s Ghost”, Curry is initially overpowered. Once the character reveals his villainous nature, however, his theatricality (and British accent) reasserts itself. As Ben wields magic and recites evil spells, Curry draws his vowels and stresses the accent (“That makes me waaarloooockCurry played similar two-faced villain Darth Sidious in “Star Wars: The Clone Wars.” Like Ian McDiarmid before him, Curry also plays an affable Senator Palpatine, but as the Dark Lord of the Sith, he leaves dropping her voice an octave and reaching the back of her throat for a guttural delivery.

When an actor is as expressive as Tim Curry, hiding his natural features can enhance his performance instead of restricting it.


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