Police in a small Pennsylvania town claimed they were “completely terrified” by a prank inspired by murderous clown Pennywise.
A local trickster has placed red balloons on grates, similar to the horror film “It,” which debuts Friday.
The Lititz Borough Police Department took to Facebook Tuesday to “respectfully request” for the gag to stop.
“It” tells the story of children mysteriously disappearing from the sleepy town of Derry, Maine. A group of preteens unite and band together to square off against Pennywise.
Author Stephen King’s frightening tale was first brought to life in 1990 as an ABC miniseries that starred English actor Tim Curry as the shape-shifting evil entity. The Hollywood Reporter recently reported his depiction may be to blame for a rise of coulrophobia, or clown phobia.
The upcoming adaptation of “It” based on the 1986 novel stars 27-year-old actor Bill Skarsgard.
World Clown Association president Pam Moody told Fox News in July real-life clowns weren’t afraid of the film.
“’It’ seems like it may have planted the original seed to portray clowns as ‘scary,’” explained Moody. “Since then, countless Hollywood movies and television shows have jumped on board with characters of their own. So basically, it is old news to us.”
Whether “It” ultimately proves to be a box office hit or flop, Moody insisted professional clowns aren’t concerned over possible lack of work due to fear.
“Personally, I don’t feel that it will have that much impact on the ‘professional clown community,’” she insisted.
Moody added, “True professional clowns begin with a ‘heart’ of a clown. The costume and makeup is secondary to that. We are not scary or offensive. Our goal is to bring humor and laughter to a hurting world. I personally prefer a 4-5 star hotel over a sewer for lodging.”