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And ‘It’ begins: Shooting underway in Port Hope for blockbuster horror sequel

Monday was day one of filming in Port Hope for Largo, the working title for a film believed to be the sequel to It, which was also shot in Port Hope in 2016.

Kevin Narraway, marketing and tourism manager for Port Hope, believes this movie could generate more than $1 million for the municipality in the coming weeks.

“I keep saying to people, Enjoy it, the circus has come to town,'” Narraway said. “It’s bit of a make believe right now and its not costing us anything. There is no new infrastructure we have to build, there’s not [fire] hydrants or services or electricity we need to run.”

READ MORE: Over 1,000 people show up to job fair in Port Hope for film ‘Largo’

Warner Bros. and New Line Production have nearly 400 people working on set. While Narraway says the excess people and equipment can be challenging, there are regulations in place to help manage the crowd, and that crowd is welcomed business for the town.

“They’re spending, they’re eating, they’re going to restaurants, they’re going to the town they’re going for dinners and things like that, and the extras and security and all the things that they are going to be renting and using,” said Narrarway.

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Many of the storefronts were changed to match the scenes of the previous movie, which is based on Stephen King’s best selling novel. But Candy Thibeau, owner of Maggie Moose — a new fudge and gift boutique shop — says she doesn’t mind her store being used in the film.

“They’ve really come in and changed it,” Thibeau said. “We’re lucky because we get to keep our signage, so it’ll be seen that way in the movie which were thrilled about.”

Shop owners say they’re embracing the cult following for this latest movie

“Keeping busy — we are in the movies so it’s fun, actually, its the second time around,” said Roger Bernard, owner of Dreamers Cafe. “I started at 5 this morning but I usually at start at 7, and I did a lot of prep last night.”

READ MORE: Stephen King’s ‘It’ becomes highest-grossing horror movie ever

Die-hard Stephen King fan Heather Goldsmith, meanwhile, came with her family from St. Catherines to get a glimpse of the action.

“Its been a blast, so far it’s been just the best day,” Goldsmith said. “We got here and we immediately saw the main cast and it’s just been fun every since. Port Hope is beautiful; I love it here. If I could live here, I’d live here. This place is adorable.”

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Some big Hollywood faces roaming port hope streets include Jessica Chastain, James Macvoy and Bill Skarsgård, who is reprising his role as Pennywise, the evil clown.

“What we keep saying to the people is just enjoy while its here, how often do you see a production of this size coming to a small town?” said Narraway.

The production is expected to continue until October with the bulk of filming happening in September. Largo is expected to be released sometime later in 2018.