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‘Conjuring’ Sequel in Development at New Line (EXCLUSIVE)

Demonic possession thriller opens Friday

With “The Conjuring” looking like a sleeper hit, New Line is already working on bringing a sequel to life.

James Wan’s demonic possession thriller opens Friday in the wake of off-the-charts test screening results and strong reviews. Set in Rhode Island in 1971, the story is based on the work of real-life paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren — portrayed by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga. Ron Livingston and Lili Taylor play father and mother of the five Perron girls who were terrorized by the haunted house.

“Horror is very much a part of the DNA of New Line — ‘Nightmare on Elm Street,’ ‘Friday the 13th,’ ‘The Rite,’ and the ‘Final Destination’ films,” notes New Line president Toby Emmerich. “This is as good a horror movie as we’ve ever made…. We think it will have great playability.”

SEE MORE: New Line Counts on ‘Conjuring’ to Raise Its Lagging B.O. Spirits

Emmerich told Variety that New Line is exploring a potential franchise based on the Warrens’ investigations, which also involved cases that wound up as the movies “The Amityville Horror” and “The Haunting in Connecticut.” “We have Lorraine’s permission and support, and we are working on developing another film,” Emmerich said.

The team of Carey Hayes and Chad Hayes, who penned “The Conjuring,” are on board as writers for the sequel. The brothers interviewed Lorraine Warren extensively as part of developing the script.

Warner Bros. had originally dated “The Conjuring” for Jan. 25, but decided last fall to move it back to this summer as a result of the test screening results. Producers are Rob Cowan, Peter Safran and Tony DeRosa-Grund.

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