The Conjuring 3 is actively moving forward now, with a screenwriter in place. In the 1980s - and to a lesser extent the 1990s - the horror genre and often the local multiplex itself was dominated by long-running franchises, which often saw a new entry get pumped out nearly every year. The biggest of these franchises were of course A Nightmare on Elm Street and Friday the 13th, with series like Halloween and Hellraiser doing their best to keep up. Since the turn of the current decade though, franchise horror has been few and far between, and a lot of what there has been has performed poorly.
The one major exception to this rule in the 2010s so far has been James Wan's The Conjuring franchise, which began in 2013, hauling in a massive $318 million worldwide on a budget of only $20 million. Recognizing a good thing when they saw it, Warner Bros. quickly greenlit a Conjuring spinoff focusing on the demon-possessed doll Annabelle, which itself earned a hefty $256 million on a budget of only $6.5 million. Last year's The Conjuring 2 continued this pattern, raking in $320 million on a budget of $40 million.
This summer will soon see moviegoers treated to Annabelle: Creation, a prequel to the 2014 spinoff. Directed by David F. Sandberg (Lights Out), Creation is earning much more favorable reviews than its predecessor, and looks likely to continue the Conjuring movie franchise's successful run. Additional spinoffs based on Conjuring 2 villains The Nun and The Crooked Man are in the pipeline, and now Deadline reports that Warner Bros. has officially given the go-ahead to The Conjuring 3.
The actual plot of The Conjuring 3 is presently being kept under wraps, but it will indeed once again concern a case file of married paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, with stars Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga presumably returning to their lead roles. Also returning is writer David Leslie Johnson, who wrote the script for The Conjuring 2, and worked with Wan on a rewrite of Aquaman.
Warner Bros.' announcement of Conjuring 3 comes with one major caveat though, and that's that Wan is unlikely to return to the director's chair for this installment. The exceedingly busy Wan will remain on-board as a producer, but the search for a new director is seemingly still ongoing. Wan seems to have a pretty good eye for spotting rising talent, so it'll be interesting to see what up and comer he hands the reins over to.
- Annabelle: Creation (2017) release date: Aug 11, 2017
- The Nun (2018) release date: Sep 07, 2018