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Top 10 Creepy Facts About The Nun

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: William Regot
Script Written by William Regot. Never mess with a nun. Join as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Facts About The Nun.

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Top 10 Facts About The Nun

Never mess with a nun. Welcome to, and today, we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Facts About The Nun.

For this list, we’re looking at info related to the upcoming horror movie, “The Nun.”

#10: It’s the Fifth Installment in the “Conjuring” Franchise

Grossing more than 1.2 billion dollars worldwide with its first four films, the wildly successful “Conjuring” franchise has already spawned its own spinoff with the “Annabelle” films, and it’s looking to do the same thing with “The Nun.” This film will mark the return of Valak, a demon who battled Ed and Lorraine Warren in “The Conjuring 2” and made a post-credits appearance in “Annabelle: Creation.” Though “The Nun” is the latest installment in the “Conjuring” franchise, it is set earlier than the other films, taking place in 1952.

#9: The Plot

In the film, a priest, Father Burke, and a sister who has yet to complete her vows, Irene, travel to an abbey in Romania to investigate a nun’s death. At the abbey, a secret is revealed to them about the order that lives there, and they encounter a demonic figure Sister Irene had visions of in childhood. According to the film’s official website, Father Burke and Sister Irene will face a threat to “their faith and their very souls.” “The Nun” is a prequel that will give more of a backstory to Valak.

#8: Several Horror Veterans Were Involved in the Production

Many of the people who worked on “The Nun” have their own proven track record in the horror genre. Producer James Wan has been behind some of the most popular horror movie franchises in recent memory, including “Saw”, “Insidious,” and “The Conjuring.” One of “The Nun’s” screenwriters is Gary Dauberman, who has written the screenplays for the “Annabelle” movies and shared a co-writing credit for the critically acclaimed 2017 version of “It.” Finally, “The Nun” is director Corin Hardy’s second horror film that he’s helmed, after 2015’s “The Hallow”

#7: No Church Filming Was Allowed During the Romanian Shoot

While the crew was shooting in Romania, the production ran into a minor problem: filming churches is banned in Romania. Because of this, everything that resembled a church had to be made by the crew from scratch. With the help of some designs based on a church found in director Corin Hardy’s childhood hometown in Sussex, prduction designer Jennifer Spence and her team pulled out all the stops to create the creepiest sets possible, including building a fake entrance against a real Romanian castle. And while they couldn’t film actual hallowed locations, the movie was fortunate enough to receive a blessing from a priest.

#6: Animals Interrupted Production

The restriction on filming churches wasn’t the only obstacle the production crew faced. They also had to the deal with outside factors from the Romanian countryside where production took place. At the Corvin Castle location - ironically on the same day the production received its blessing - a herd of goats delayed the work schedule when they blocked a path to the set as they were going their own way. Then one day, at another location, a herd of sheep tied up traffic and slowed down production once again.

#5: Both Men and Women Were Considered for the Role of Valak

It’s hard to believe that the part of a character known as “The Nun” would have gone to a man. But that was apparently a possibility, as the casting call for the role of Valak in “Conjuring 2” wasn’t closed off to any specific gender. Men were welcome to try out for the part, and out of the hundreds of applicants considered, a few of them did. In the end, the part went to Bonnie Aarons, who had previously frightened people, including director Corin Hardy, as a bum in the 2001 David Lynch film “Mulholland Drive.”

#4: Faces of Death

For the film’s production at Castel Film Studios, there’s a set of four tombs that features death masks of five different people. However, those masks aren’t taken from random extras, but rather from people who worked on the movie behind the scenes, including director Corin Hardy, writer Gary Dauberman, executive producer Michael Clear, director of photography Maxime Alexandre , and Harry Boyd, who was a first assistant director. There’s a scene in the final film that shows the masks as a little easter egg.

#3: Its Production Was (Supposedly) Visited by Ghosts

There’s nothing like working on a horror movie to make you paranoid about supernatural forces that could be out there. In an interview with Cinemablend, Corin Hardy said that he was visited by two ghosts that he mistook for members of his own film crew while he was working on a scene in a long, dark corridor. When Hardy turned around after carefully studying some film monitors, the two had vanished, as if they were never really there. Hardy speculated that the “ghosts” may have been Romanian soldiers who were observing the filmmaking process.

#2: Banned Promo

One promo for “The Nun” that sparked outrage was a seven second ad that appeared before YouTube videos. Immediately after the ad starts, the sound bar supposedly goes all the way to zero for an unexplained reason, but then Valak pops up accompanied by a startling noise. Perhaps most annoyingly, there was no way to skip the ad, and viewers could only hope they already had the sound turned down for real. YouTube ended up removing the ad due to its “shocking content” policy.

#1: Valak Is Based on an Actual Legend

Mentioned in the ancient book “Key of Solomon,” the Valak of legend isn’t a demonic apparition dressed up as a nun, but a child and the supposed “President of Hell”, who rides around on the back of a two-headed dragon. The Valak of the “Conjuring” universe was actually inspired by a presence that Lorraine Warren said she encountered, though it may be interesting to one day see a cinematic version of Valak as he is presented in mythology.

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