The Conjuring universe is getting bigger by the minute. New Line has just given the green light to another spin-off in the form of The Crooked Man. The character made his horrifying debut in The Conjuring 2 and is now the second character to get a spin-off from that movie, following Valek the nun.
The news comes courtesy of The Hollywood Reporter, which means you can pretty much take it to the bank. The Crooked Man does not yet have a director, but up-and-comer Mike Van Waes has been hired to pen the script based on a story by James Wan, who directed both The Conjuring and The Conjuring 2. As THR puts it, James Wan is serving as the "chief architect of the Conjuring universe". The Crooked Man, a tall, slender, horrifying creation, isn't based on much, but the character comes from an English nursery rhyme which, hopefully, Van Waes can make use of in the story.
"There was a crooked man, and he walked a crooked mile. He found a crooked sixpence upon a crooked stile. He bought a crooked cat, which caught a crooked mouse. And they all lived together in a little crooked house."
Those who are looking forward to seeing The Crooked Man join The Conjuring universe may be wondering who Mike Van Waes is. He doesn't have a lot of produced work to go on, but his stock has been rising lately. New Line recently bought his pitch for a horror movie set in the world of The Wizard of Oz. His movie Hammerspace was also purchased by Warner Bros. after making it onto the Black List, which is a list of the best unproduced screenplays in Hollywood. The Conjuring is a very important franchise for Warner Bros./New Line, so they wouldn't just let anyone write something that could be a huge moneymaker. At this point, the universe has been built on the backs of promising new talent.
New Line is doing one hell of a job building out this Conjuring cinematic universe so far. Annabelle came out in 2014 as the first spin-off and, even though critics and fans did not enjoy the movie, it made an incredible $256 million worldwide with a budget of less than $7 million. Later this year, Annabelle 2, Annabelle: Creation, will be looking to add to the box office total, while also, hopefully, doing a little better with critics and fans. With director David F. Sandberg (Lights Out) at the helm, that seems likely. Director Corin Hardy (The Hallow) is also working on The Nun right now, which will center on the terrifying nun Valek from The Conjuring 2 who, interestingly enough, was a last-minute addition to that movie.
To date, The Conjuring franchise has made $895 million worldwide and, considering the relatively modest budgets these movies carry, that makes this a monster franchise. The Conjuring 3 is also still being planned, but no release date has been set and it isn't clear if James Wan will return to the director's chair. We will be sure to keep you up to date as more information on The Crooked Man is made available.