Easter Eggs And Other Fun Facts About “The Conjuring”
By Ryan Buell
For those of you who aren’t aware, “The Conjuring,” which is currently the number one movie in America, is a delightful horror movie based on the real-life case files of pioneer paranormal researchers Ed and Lorraine Warren. The Warrens have been investigating the paranormal since the 1960s, and their most famous case to date, “The Amityville Horror,” has been made in to a film twice (the latest attempt came in 2005 starring Ryan Reynolds).
Many PRS fans have seen Lorraine on our first TV series, “Paranormal State” on A&E. It’s no secret that Lorraine has been a close friend of mine for some time. We first met in 2006 when she appeared as a tent pole speaker for 2006’s UNIV-CON (our national paranormal conference). The rest, as they say, is history. For the next several years, Lorraine joined me on investigations all over the country. She was a mentor, a teacher, and most of all, a friend.
It excites me that Lorraine and her late husband Ed have finally gotten their due with a movie of their own. Although the Warrens were the subject of many Hollywood stories before, none were as large as “Conjuring,” which in its first weekend grossed just over $40 million alone. With a budge of only $20 million, it goes without saying that “The Conjuring” is a massive hit. And its post-weekend earnings have continued to surprise.
“The Conjuring,” aside from its horror and shock-value, is ultimately a love story for the Warrens. And you can tell the filmmakers worked to pay homage to the couple. The film closes with a quote from Ed, and the end-credits sequence shows off pictures and news clippings from the real-life Ed and Lorraine Warren. What tickled me the most is the fact that the film does a good job of featuring Ed and Lorraine period. In the past, filmmakers have opted to focus on the stories of the families only and not the investigators.
If you know a good deal about Ed and Lorraine, then perhaps you noticed some of the easter eggs in the film. If you hadn’t, fear not, that’s what this article is for. Aside from knowing Lorraine for seven years and counting, I’ve also been a student of their work since I was 14. After all, one of the first books I ever read about the paranormal was “The Demonologist” (I highly recommend).
So here you go. If you noticed any other easter eggs, shoot me an e-mail at email@example.com
WILL THE REAL LORRAINE WARREN PLEASE STAND UP?
In the film, the characters Ed and Lorraine Warren give a lecture (the second one in movie) to a college audience. In attendance is Lili Taylor, who plays the mother of the family being haunted. She sits in on the lecture and afterwards asks for Ed and Lorraine’s help. But if you look closely, sitting about six rows down, is the real Lorraine Warren! If you blink you’ll miss her. But she’s there. Ribbon in her hair and all!
THE OCCULT MUSEUM
Ed’s office filled with haunted artifacts is featured several times in the movie. And one of the most disturbing items, Annabelle the Doll, is placed in a box. Having visited the real haunted artifacts room in Lorraine’s home, I noticed a few items in the film that were copied from the original. There’s a slender demonic-looking statue in the background that looks eerily similar to the one in Lorraine’s home. It’s without a doubt the creepiest item I saw in her house. For any of you who wish to visit the real museum, Lorraine offers tours every month at her Warrenology events.
PAINTING BY ED WARREN
Also spotted in the haunted artifacts room is a painting sitting on the floor. It’s especially prevalent at the end of the movie. This work of art was painted by none other than Ed Warren himself. And unless the filmmakers made a photocopy, I’m willing to bet that the painting in the movie is the actual painting by Ed himself. Before Ed and Lorraine Warren earned their money by speaking at colleges and writing books, Ed tried his hand as an artist. He often used his investigations as inspiration for his work. The painting resting in the film is one of his more famous paintings. I found it very cool that the filmmakers placed one of Ed’s real paintings in there.
At one point, the camera pans to a wooden office sign for the Warrens. Although I doubt it’s the original (which featured their address), it’s pretty close to the original. The original office sign now rests inside Ed’s office and the museum, but I thought this was a pretty cool prop homage.
I doubt many would consider this an easter egg, but I thought I’d comment on it, anyways. Ed and Lorraine have a real-life daughter, Judy. Obviously she’s a grown adult by now, but sometimes filmmakers have been known to go so far from the source material that they’d give real-life characters fictional children, spouses, etc. So this is just to confirm that yes, Judy is really their daughter. I was actually touched and happy to see the filmmakers use the family dynamic in the picture, mainly because Ed and Lorraine were (and still are) very family-oriented. Ed and Lorraine had their base for operations in their home (as seen in the film), and extensions of their family have actually joined their team. For over ten years now, Ed and Lorraine’s son-in-law, Tony Spera, has assisted them with their work. After Ed’s passing, Tony took over, helping Lorraine with her investigations and speaking duties. Although I’ve met Judy a couple of times, I never got to ask her to what extent she’s ever been involved with her parents’ work.
Did you see any other easter eggs in the movie? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also don’t forget to tune in to PARANORMAL INSIDER RADIO Monday, July 29th at 9pm EST for a live interview with Lorraine Warren!