Those of us who love period-set horror feel we've landed in a horror film time machine as of late (The Witch, The Conjuring films, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies). And now we have another antiquated creep-fest to look forward to: Annabelle 2.
Horror auteur James Wan — a man who understands everything is creepier when set in the past — plucked fledgling filmmaker David F. Sandberg out of a dark corner of the internet and gave him the chance to make his short film into this summer's most entertaining horror, Lights Out. Now, Sandberg directs the follow-up to 2014's Annabelle (with Wan once again producing), which was a spinoff of the opening scene of Wan's 2013 film The Conjuring. The first Annabelle was directed by John R. Leonetti and set in 1970. Now that we finally have a teaser for Annabelle 2, it's safe to say the follow-up appears to be a prequel.
The film's description only hints at what seems certain in the teaser — that we finally have our origin story for the evil doll:
In 'Annabelle 2', several years after the tragic death of their little girl, a dollmaker and his wife welcome a nun and several girls from a shuttered orphanage into their home, soon becoming the target of the dollmaker’s possessed creation, Annabelle.
So what's the story with Annabelle? This sneak peek doesn't give us a whole lot of context, but combined with what we know of the film, there's plenty we can deduce with a quick breakdown of the teaser.
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Secluded House, A Horror Film Must-Have
We're not given a ton of information about the location, but it looks like our main characters may not have a whole lot of neighbors. Perfect.
Hello, Gorgeous Production Design
The interior of the house and the costumes suggest Annabelle 2 is set in the '40s. Yet another hint that we're getting an origin story.
Annabelle The Human, Or Annabelle The Doll?
Miranda Otto seems plenty confused to come across a tea party happening in what is likely her home. Can we assume she's the dollmaker's wife mentioned in the film's description? Looks like it, especially seeing as she says "Annabelle" in a way that would suggest Annabelle is a person not a doll, and Otto's character is quite surprised to see Annabelle. Perhaps because she's dead?
Annabelle's Looking Fresh
Annabelle got a bit beat up by the end of the last film; here, she's looking all kinds of fresh and new. Perhaps she's the creation of the aforementioned dollmaker.
A Frightening Transformation
If "Annabelle" truly is the poor dollmaker and his wife's dead daughter, this scene is already plenty creepy. And if this represents when Annabelle the girl becomes Annabelle the doll, it could be even creepier.
Religion Won't Help You Now
Religious iconography is always appreciated in horror, especially when it points out just how screwed the characters really are. Otto's character drops her crucifix in fright while viewing whatever gruesomeness occurs before her. With the promise of a nun and orphans from the film's description, we have a feeling mommy dearest could end up having a crisis of faith.
A Scene Within A Scene
The kid's bedroom where the teaser takes place looks like it could be Annabelle the little girl's old room, preserved after her death. When things get crazy in the teaser, we're gifted with this quick treat of an identical little room within a dollhouse, with a dollhouse. That's some Inception-style meta spookiness.
The Little Girl Vanishes
This close-up of the teacups shaking doesn't imply much, except that it looks like both the little girl and the doll might have disappeared, further suggesting a supernatural transition has occurred.
Welp, it may be short but it sure is sweet. This teaser for Annabelle 2 suggests we've got another story-driven horror film headed our way in May. In addition to Miranda Otto, the film stars Anthony LaPaglia, Stephanie Sigman, Talitha Bateman, Lulu Wilson and Philippa Coulthard.
The film is scheduled for release on May 19, 2017 and is being distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures.
Does Annabelle 2's teaser have you excited for the new film? Tell us about your favorite period-set horror film in the comments below.