The next installment in the story of Ed and Lorraine Warren, The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It, is saying goodbye to the haunted house format that made the first two films so beloved. Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga are returning as the real life paranormal investigators after five years of spinoffs that saw their characters relegated to the sidelines. The Conjuring 3 is bringing them back into the spotlight and it has been touted as the darkest entry in the franchise yet.
Set to follow the case of Arne Johnson, the first man who claimed demonic possession as a defense in his murder trial, Ed and Lorraine Warren will head to Connecticut to investigate. Ensnared alongside Johnson in this supernatural mystery is David Glatzel (Julian Hilliard), the young boy initially possessed by the demon that goes on to inhabit Arne Johnson. While The Conjuring 3 looks to be taking things to terrifying new heights once again, the film will break the format of the previous two movies in interesting ways.
Director Michael Chaves reveals that The Devil Made Me Do It will emulate the real life investigations of the Warren’s by not confining them to the haunted houses that they were visiting in the first two movies. While Chaves thinks that the first film left people craving another haunted house entry, he says that the sequel and its spinoffs have explored that format enough. The director believes it’s time to break down the doors and bring the Warren’s out into the world.
You were saying this is unlike any other Conjuring movie, like it’s not a haunted house movie. What was interesting about introducing that procedural element and what were the challenges of it?
Michael Chaves: I think it was always the promise of The Conjuring movies and promises of the Warrens. This is what they did, they would actually have these investigations that weren’t just limited to a haunted house movie.A friend of mine, when they first saw The Conjuring, they thought this was going to be like Mulder and Scully. They’re always going to be doing it like The X-Files; it’ll be a different case, each one. But it’s funny, because I think that the first one left such an impression that people kept on wanting that haunted house experience. And I think that kind of was the birth of the franchise.With all of these other spin-offs, we’ve seen the haunted house format really well explored and done really well. I think with this, everybody – starting with James and going down to the studio and everyone involved – wanted to just kick the doors off the haunted house and wanted to take the Warrens out into the world.
Both The Conjuring and its sequel saw the Warren’s tackle real life cases while confined to the family homes they were occurring in. This resulted in some of The Conjuring franchise’s scariest moments, but after two movies in the main arm of the franchise and several spinoffs, it’s time for a new direction. What exactly Chaves means by taking the Warren’s “out into the world” is made a little bit clearer in the film’s first trailer.
The court case of Arne Johnson is featured in some parts of the the clip and it’s clear that The Devil Made Me Do It will see the Warren’s consulting on both the paranormal and the legal side of things. This will add an interesting wrinkle to their job that will only be complicated by the spirits that still linger. Whether or not those spirits will make an appearance in the courtroom itself remains a mystery, but The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It is already going beyond the confines of the truth to tell what looks to be a terrifying story. Bringing the demons into the real world will only make it that much scarier.