Minor spoiler ahead for Annabelle Comes Home.
The Conjuring Universe has been steadily growing since its inception with the 2013 original film. The Conjuring introduced audiences to James Wan's twisted world, and the stories from real-life demonology specialists, The Warrens. The first movie also featured the debut of Annabelle, a possessed doll who eventually was given her own trilogy of spinoffs.
In the Conjuring franchise, Annabelle is terrifying porcelain doll that is disfigured and immediately menacing. But the real object was actually a Raggedy Ann doll, changed in order to make the villain more theatrical for the movies. Annabelle Comes Home actually alludes to this early into the film's run, through The Warrens' television.
Before Annabelle Comes Home truly descends into chaos, Judy Warren (Mckenna Grace) is shown watching a game show on TV. During the show, a young contestant is given their very own Raggedy Ann doll-- the same toy that Annabelle was IRL. This is a clear nod to the character's origin, and highlights the change in appearance that James Wan went with for The Conjuring.
The decision to change Annabelle's appearance makes a great deal of sense. The model ultimately chosen for the doll is totally bone chilling. Her haggard appearance and creepy grin are enough to cause a sense of unease in theaters. Moviegoers wait for her to finally move and go full Chucky, but it never happens. Instead, all other forms of horrifying incidents occur throughout the Annabelle franchise.
Aside from making the character more scary, Annabelle's new look for the big screen also side stepped any possibly lawsuits that could have resulted. The Conjuring likely would have needed permission to use Raggedy Ann's likeness. And brands don't always want to have their character associated with terrifying masses of audiences, and being responsible for onscreen deaths.
Annabelle was the first spinoff to come out of The Conjuring Universe, with movies like The Nun and The Curse of La Llorona following suit over the years. Annabelle managed to make money at the box office, warranting a sequel's order. Annabelle: Creation improved on its predecessor, and really resonated with audiences and fans of the genre. And now Annabelle Comes Home completes the trilogy, and brings The Warrens back into the franchise for a story thats even more deeply connected to the Conjuring movies.
Annabelle Comes Home is in theaters now. Be sure to check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.