Malignant's Trailer Hits Differently After James Wan Compares His Horror Movie To Frozen

Annabelle Wallis in Malignant and Elsa in Frozen
(Image credit: (Warner Bros/Disney))
(Image credit: (Warner Bros/Disney))

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The Conjuring’s James Wan is back in the scare game as a director after stepping away to direct Aquaman for the DCEU and give other filmmakers a shot at his horror universe with its other titles. This September his original concept Malignant will come to theaters and streaming, and we’ve been given a first look at the film through today’s trailer release. And when introducing Malignant, James Wan is comparing it to Disney’s Frozen and now I’m really intrigued.

The director described Malignant as a “sisterly investigative story” amidst the early look of Annabelle Wallis as a troubled character who is dealing with violent visions of murder. James Wan shared the Disney comparison with these words:

For some reason, she's having these visions of this series of really gruesome, grisly murders. And she doesn't know what's happening to her. She feels like somehow it's connected to her and all that. And her sister and her are trying to work it out. So they're trying to find out what is going on here. And I joke that it's like the horror version of Frozen. It really is. There's a horror version of Frozen in that there is some of that sisterly camaraderie, but with a lot of crazy shit that happens around them.

Frozen, but make it horror? I didn’t have that on my 2021 bingo card, how about you? Oddly enough, it makes a lot of sense why James Wan makes this connection to IGN when giving the Malignant trailer a look:

As teased, Malignant follows Annabelle Wallis’ Madison, who is the Queen Elsa of the movie since she has a frightening gift with these visions that she doesn’t know quite what to do with. It looks like her sister, played by Maddie Hasson, will help her figure out what’s going on during the film. There seems to be some kind of dark past her parents might know about that could be the key to her stopping this entity called “Gabriel” who is haunting her and killing people.

Malignant is clearly not age appropriate for target Frozen fans as the movie has already been given an R-rating for “strong horror violence, gruesome images, and for language.” And we’re talking about the director behind Saw, Insidious and The Conjuring, some of the most gruesome and straight up scary movies from the past 20 years. That being said, it’s interesting Wan would choose Frozen as a reference point for viewers because now we won’t forget it.

James Wan fans can be excited about Malignant because it’s the director’s first time directing an original horror film without connections to his Conjuring universe since 2010’s Insidious. He wrote the story with Akela Cooper, who penned the Malignant screenplay and is producing it as well. He must have a lot of faith in it, setting aside his busy lineup of films to take on the project himself.

Malignant is coming to theaters and HBO Max on September 10. You can sign up for HBO Max ahead of the release using this link and check out all the upcoming horror movies coming out this year and beyond here on CinemaBlend.

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

YA genre tribute. Horror May Queen. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.