It seems as though we’ve discovered the reasoning behind New Line’s recently-announced decision to delay horror sequel, The Conjuring 2. Slipping from October 23rd, 2015 all the way to 2016, the follow-up to 2013’s well-received scarefest will indeed be directed by James Wan, despite claims to the contrary.
In a statement released today, Tony Emmerich — president and COO of New Line — spoke with delight of Wan’s rather unexpected return.
“We had a great experience with James on The Conjuring, and we give him a lot of credit for that movie working so well. He worked on the screenplay and came to the table with very inventive things that were not in the script and cast it fantastically well. Add to that his work in producing Annabelle, and he is one of the masters of the genre and we’re happy to have him. You go through the list of possible directors of The Conjuring sequel, and his is the name you stop at, which is why we tried so hard to make this work.”
We say unexpected because shortly after the success of Insidious: Chapter 2 — which pulled in $41 million in its opening weekend and became the highest-grossing September opening in box office history — Wan went on record and stated that he was “finished” with the horror genre as a whole. Having shepherded the likes of Saw, Insidious and, more recently, Annabelle into the genre gems we know and love — the former two more so than the latter — the announcement came as an unexpected blow.
Now, it seems that the Australian director isn’t finished with horror just yet, as his deal with New Line Cinema will see him return to direct The Conjuring 2 all the while having a major part to play in the studio’s other in-development projects.
According to the report published by Deadline, we understand that the esteemed filmmaker has signed on for a first look producing deal which will have him oversee moderately-sized films within the science fiction, horror and comedy genres.
Currently, James Wan is hard at work on Fast & Furious 7, and its on this film where he found the necessary respite needed to return to the horror genre with a clean slate so to speak.
“It was during the editing of Fast & Furious 7 that my brain started sparking ideas for The Conjuring sequel. Taking a break from horror has allowed me to be creatively rejuvenated. I’m excited to tell the story of the next case-file of Ed & Lorraine Warren and expand on this world we’ve created.”
Because paranormal horror and a topless Vin Diesel go so hand-in-hand. Nonetheless, we’re delighted to see Wan back in a field where he excels.
Initially due in 2015, The Conjuring 2 has been pushed back to accommodate James Wan’s slate, and is now set to release in 2016.