ByPeter DiDonato, writer at
A night owl that writes what comes to mind. You can follow me on Twitter at @didonatope or visit my blog at
Peter DiDonato

In 2012, the movie The Devil Inside shocked audiences everywhere...but not in a good way. Despite opening at number one, The Devil Inside has since become infamous for its bad acting, horribly sloppy editing, and audience-insulting ending. Many have dubbed it as the worst horror movie ever made.

Today, the trailer was released on Yahoo Movies for an upcoming horror movie called The Vatican Tapes. As I was watching it, I couldn't help but notice a few clues that lead me to believe this movie started production as a Devil Inside sequel.

In the trailer, two Vatican officials are seen looking at tapes of recorded exorcisms. On the tapes, a few small clips are shown. One is of an arm with cross-shaped cuts on it. This immediately reminded me of the "connect the cuts" scene from The Devil Inside.

In another tape, a woman is shown bending backwards while a clergyman and two doctors watch in horror. Again, this is just like a scene from The Devil Inside.

Later on in the trailer, a possessed girl goes completely insane, contorting herself and apparently dislocating her shoulder. It's needless to say how familiar this was to the contorting possessed girl from The Devil Inside.

I'm sure some moviegoers will wonder why on Earth writer-director Mark Neveldine (Co-director of the Crank films and Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance) would blatantly copy something equally considered by audiences and critics to be a horrendous movie. On the other hand, this may not be a case of plagiarism after all.

After the initially impressive opening weekend, Devil Inside director WIlliam Brent Bell was signed on to make a movie about the Vatican with Warner Brothers naturally titled The Vatican. According to Deadline, the movie would be a hybrid of found-footage and standard film techniques. Nobody has heard of the film since, and the only movie William Brent Bell has done is a straight-to-VOD release called Wer.

Perhaps in the early stages of its development, The Vatican Tapes was originally intended to be a spin off of The Devil Inside. After the critical and audience thrashing of The Devil Inside (including a rare "F" score on Cinemascore), Warner Brothers must have decided to boot Bell from the project and remove all continuity with The Devil Inside. This explains why, despite some scenes looking similar, they were re-shot for The Vatican Tapes.

Unlike The Devil Inside, The Vatican Tapes actually has some star power with lead actors Michael Peña and Djimon Hounsou. However, it is unlikely that it will do any better than The Devil Inside at the box office. If it's released in theaters at all, it will likely be an extremely limited release synched up with a VOD release.


Plagiarism, coincidence or an initial spin off?


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