James Wan‘s The Conjuring was a bonafide thriller and critical success, and of course when you have a box office smash that also happens to be an R-rated horror film, studios want to see more — remember Saw. The film also contained various demon-possessed objects like the Annabelle doll which received its own spinoff film, Annabelle — which was also another box office hit.
Considering Wan said he was going to take a break from horror by directing Fast and Furious 7, some wondered when we would make his return to the scare-filled genre. It appears that his break won’t last very long, as it has been confirmed that he will return to direct The Conjuring 2, which is set for a 2016 release.
The Conjuring 2 was actually scheduled for an October 2, 2015 release, but because Wan is busy directing Fast and Furious 7, that seemed almost impossible. Sure WB could have searched for another director, but it seems they’ve only had their sights set on Wan. So it was announced that the film would be pushed back to an unspecified date in 2016.
Here’s what Wan told Deadline about his new deal with New Line and coming back to direct The Conjuring 2,
“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.”
Wan’s return also comes with a few perks. Now that he has signed a new deal over at New Line, Wan will develop and produce modest budget films in the science fiction, horror, and comedy genres through his Atomic Monster production banner. The deal comes on the heel’s Annabelle incredible box office run.
Universal also has options on Wan for future Fast and Furious installments, but the studio has yet to comment on whether or not he will come back to direct another film.
As for The Conjuring 2’s previous release date, what will replace it has not yet been confirmed. According to sources, the empty slot could be replaced by either Crawlspace, starring Michael Vartan as a widower who moves into a house troubled by “a very disturbing secret from the past,” or Superstition, which is set in “a house that was once the site of a witch’s execution.”