By Mike Miller
August 28, 2018 at 08:52 AM EDT
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The studio behind It was getting scared before Pennywise even hit the scene, according to Cary Fukunaga, who was originally set to direct the horror flick.

Fukunaga, who directed the first season of True Detective, left the New Line project years ago after spending three years developing the script with co-writer Chase Palmer. The first report of Fukunaga’s departure, which came from The Wrap just weeks before production was set to begin, noted budgetary and casting concerns as part of the reason for the split.

“Ultimately, we and New Line have to agree on the kind of movie we want to make, and we just wanted to make different movies,” Fukunaga told EW in 2015.

But in a new interview with GQ, Fukunaga expanded on his explanation, saying, “I think it was fear on their part, that they couldn’t control me.”

Despite this alleged perception, the director says he “would have been a total collaborator” on the film. “I have never seen a note and been like, F— you guys. No way. It’s always been a conversation.”

Fukunaga, who also directed the acclaimed film Beasts of No Nation, is now working on Netflix’s Maniac, starring Jonah Hill and Emma Stone.

Andy Muschietti took over directing duties for It, which was a hit with critics and at the box office last year. A sequel is slated for release on Sept. 6, 2019.

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release date
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