Expect to see a lot of The Nun this week. The latest spinoff in The Conjuring universe, launched by James Wan in 2013, is slated to haunt US theaters this Friday, September 7th. Directed by Corin Hardy and starring Demián Bichir, Taissa Farmiga, and Jonas Bloquet, it's being billed as the darkest chapter in The Conjuring franchise yet. The Nun also takes place chronologically before any of the previous Conjuring (or Annabelle) films, meaning it's not just an origin story for the demon Valak (first introduced in 2016's The Conjuring 2), it's a starting point for the entire series. We saw a connection in 2017's Annabelle: Creation, but whether or not The Nun somehow ties into the first Conjuring film remains to be seen.
As Warner Bros. give The Nun a final promotional push, our cups runneth over with four new teasers and a new featurette all hitting the Internet this holiday weekend, and you can see them all at the bottom of the article. The first clip, "Sister", is an extended moment that's already been revealed in previous trailers; as Sister Irene (Farmiga) explores an abandoned convent's darkest corridors, she's assaulted (as are we) with a jump-scare reminiscent of The Exorcist III. In "Holy Fire" Father Burke (Bichir) faces down a horde of faceless entities in habits; it's also set in the claustrophobic labyrinth of catacombs beneath the film's cursed Romanian convent.
Next up is "Don't Stop Praying"; this one also features Farmiga attempting to keep Valak's fury at bay through perpetual prayer. Be sure to watch until the end for a powerful ending. In the fourth teaser (shared via Twitter), Frenchie (played by Jonas Bloquet) uncovers "the face of evil"-and we kind of wish he hadn't! Finally, we've got a 7-minute featurette featuring Corin Hardy; it includes a ton of behind the scenes footage, as well as interviews with the filmmaker who first hit most horror fans' radars following the release of The Hallow in 2015. It includes some spectacular clips of a scene that features a lot of (unholy) water!
The Nun will also see the return of Bonnie Aarons in the title role. As Valak, she was a consummate scene-stealer in The Conjuring 2, which concluded with an epic showdown between the demon nun and Lorraine Warren (played by Vera Farmiga, Taissa's older sister). Her ability to wordlessly convey palpable dread combined with classic facial features that highlights the fiend's demonic skin and eyes, make her an essential cast member. This horror fan doubts another actress could exude the same, instantly iconic intensity. Check back for reviews of The Nun at the end of the week, which is in theaters only from Warner Bros.