[Images courtesy The Conjuring 2.com]
I was not a fan of The Conjuring 2 – it was the “One Dishonorable Mention” in my “Five Great Horror Movies of 2016” linked below. But I acknowledge being in the minority on this one. With an 80% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes and a worldwide gross of 320 million dollars (from a budget of 40 million), The Conjuring 2 had plenty of positive reviews and moviegoers worldwide who chose to pay good money to see it.
The Conjuring (2013) didn’t just spawn a sequel, but also a 2014 spinoff starring Annabelle, the creepiest doll since Chucky. And like its parent, The Conjuring 2 has its own breakout supporting prop – a Night Gallery worthy portrait of an unquiet Sister menacing paranormal investigators Ed and Elaine Warren. As noted by the Hollywood Reporter last year, The Nun will be leaping off the canvas and into theaters in 2018.
More recent news about the director and at least one of the stars of The Nun indicate that this latest addition to the Conjuring family may turn out to be a spinoff (like Annabelle was to The Conjuring) that’s actually scarier than the movie it sprang from.
In February of this year, Corin Hardy was announced as the director of The Nun. If you’re asking “Corin Who?” you’re not alone. Hardy is best known for The Hallow (2015) – a “Nature Strikes Back” story set in rural Ireland. The Hallow is a small indie movie that uses atmospheric locations, practical effects, and Irish folklore to create a sense of dread to go with the scares. Check out Hardy’s website to see his other work, including the short film “Butterfly.”
If nothing else, The Nun has a director who knows how to create a unique look and atmosphere – in a horror movie that is more than half the battle.
Another promising sign is the recent announcement of The Nun’s leading man. Mexico City-born Damien Bichir, besides appearing in television series Weeds and The Bridge, also earned a Best Actor nominee in 2012 for A Better Life. He’ll be playing Father Burke, “dispatched by Rome to investigate the mysterious death of a nun.”
Anabelle grossed 257 million worldwide (against a budget of 6.5 million) and created a fun, scary “evil doll” movie from another movie’s prop. With the creative talent announced so far, The Nun may do the same with an equally creepy supporting player from the Conjuring franchise.