Vera Farmiga plays Lorraine Warren in The Conjuring.
Things got a little spooky for those involved in The Conjuring. But they lived to tell the tale.
Screenwriters Chad and Carey Hayes, who live in Los Angeles, would phone Lorraine Warren, who resides in Connecticut, to consult her while writing the script. When talking to her on two separate occasions, the line crackled and they could hear demonic-sounding voices. “Lorraine would ask us to hold on and say this commanding prayer, then the line would go perfectly clear,” Carey remembers.
For someone who makes a living scaring people, James Wan is a self-confessed scaredy-cat. Staying in a four-storey townhouse all alone during the shoot in Wilmington, North Carolina, was torture, Wan says. “Because (The Conjuring) is a true story, it really messed with my head big time. The entire time I stayed at the house, I never went to the fourth floor because there was a small crawl space in that room. My imagination started working overtime, it drove me crazy every night thinking of what’s in the crawl space. I was nervous when I went to bed every night. But luckily nothing happened.”
When she accepted the role to portray Lorraine Warren, Oscar nominee Vera Farmiga decided to read the script only in the day time.
“I didn’t ever want to read it at home. I figured the safest thing for me would be to read it somewhere else during the day. I read it in fits and spurts because it brought on overwhelming feelings: terror, awe, shock,” Farmiga says. That fear was so deep that she would be awakened every night at 3.07am, the Devil’s Hour that has a connection in the movie. Looking back, Farmiga has a logical explanation. “Till today, I still wake up at 3.07. I don’t think it had anything to do with the diabolical. In the beginning, there was a fear that came along with it. I had to pray it away, to repel it with my own positive energy,” says Farmiga who just earned an Emmy nomination for her role in Bates Motel.
Joey King, who has a killer scene in the movie as 13-year-old Christine, found bruises on her body during the shoot. King was quoted in an interview as saying: “Lili Taylor (who plays her mother) was filming some scenes where she starts getting possessed, with bruises on her body. At the same time she was filming those scenes, I started getting bruises all over my body. I went to the doctor and it turns out it was a low blood thingy, but I don’t believe in coincidences, so I don’t think it is a coincidence.” - Gordon Kho
Be afraid, be very afraid
Three, two, Wan, action!