‘The Conjuring,’ ‘Annabelle,’ and ‘The Nun’ movies are more than just supernatural horror films with disturbing plots that center around ghosts, demons, ancient sinister relicts, and various other nods to some of the most popular cliches in horror movies in general. The movies are also a part of one shared universe that seemingly forms one truly twisted story. Despite ‘The Conjuring’ movies being presented as “based on a true story,” the additional movies that came out shed some light on the events that took place prior to the shocking story presented in the mainline series.
Due to that, we decided to gather all nine movies from three separate franchises that form ‘The Conjuring’ universe and tell you how to watch them chronologically.
Editor’s Note: This watch order was updated in October 2023 with the latest installment ‘The Nun II’ released in September 2023.
All movies from ‘The Conjuring’ Universe in release date order
The first movie in ‘The Conjuring’ Universe was released back in 2013, and since then, eight other movies have been released after the first installments that neatly tie the story together, forming either indirect prequels or sequels. This is their release date order.
- ‘The Conjuring’ (2013)
- ‘Annabelle’ (2014)
- ‘The Conjuring 2‘ (2016)
- ‘Annabelle: Creation’ (2017)
- ‘The Nun’ (2018)
- ‘Annabelle Comes Home’ (2019)
- ‘The Curse of La Llorona’ (2019)
- ‘The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It’ (2021)
- ‘The Nun II’ (2023)
Are all ‘The Conjuring,’ ‘Annabelle’ and ‘The Nun’ movies connected? What’s the best way to watch them?
‘The Conjuring,’ ‘Annabelle,’ and ‘The Nun’ are all part of the same horror film universe known as ‘The Conjuring Universe.’ The films are interconnected through a shared supernatural theme and some recurring characters.
‘The Conjuring’ serves as the central film, focusing on paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. ‘Annabelle’ is a spin-off series that explores the creepy backstory of the possessed doll introduced in ‘The Conjuring,’ and ‘The Nun’ is another spin-off that delves into the origin of the demonic nun character introduced in ‘The Conjuring 2.’ The best way to watch all the movies in ‘The Conjuring’ Universe is in chronological order.
‘The Conjuring’ Universe movies in chronological order
The thing with this fictional universe is that the release order does not reflect the proper chronological order in which the movies should be watched if you want to get a full picture of the events that happened before and after ‘The Conjuring,’ here’s out chronological watch order and the explanation how the movie ties into the overall universe.
- ‘The Nun’ – Takes place in 1952.
- ‘Annabelle: Creation’ – Takes place in 1955.
- ‘The Nun II’ – Takes place in 1956.
- ‘Annabelle’ – Takes place in 1967.
- ‘The Conjuring’ – Takes place in 1971.
- ‘Annabelle Comes Home’ – Takes place in 1972.
- ‘The Curse of La Llorona’ – Takes place in 1973.
- ‘The Conjuring 2’ – Takes place in 1977.
- ‘The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It’ – Takes place in 1981.
1. ‘The Nun‘
‘The Nun’ transports us back to 1952, taking place in Romania. It explains how the great evil of the Universe, Valak, came to be here in the first place. The film explains how & who caused Valak to be summoned. It also has flashbacks to 1945, which reveal Father Burke’s initial encounter with demonic possession.
2. ‘Annabelle: Creation‘
‘Annabelle: Creation’ takes place in 1955 and, due to that setting, can be considered a prequel to both ‘Annabelle’ and ‘The Conjuring.’ The movie explains how the doll came into existence in the first place. The Mullins couple loses their daughter in a horrific car accident, and in the moment of desperation, they unknowingly make a pact with a demon to have contact with their daughter again.
3. ‘The Nun II’
Set in the aftermath of ‘The Nun,’ ‘The Nun II’ goes a few years forward and ties the entire timeline of ‘The Conjuring’ universe. Set predominantly in 1956, between the ‘Annabelle’ films, the story follows Sister Irene, now living reclusively in Italy, as she, along with Maurice “Frenchie” Theriault, becomes entangled in a series of murders linked to the fourth century A.D. St. Lucy, whose descendants, including Sister Irene, are revealed to be hunted by the vengeful demon Valak.
‘Annabelle’ takes place in 1967, 4 years before the ‘The Conjuring’ movie, and basically shows what kind of horrifying things Anabelle was up to before she is introduced in the ‘The Conjuring’ movie.
5. ‘The Conjuring‘
Placed neatly almost in the middle of the franchise, ‘The Conjuring’ took place in 1971, and watching all the other movies in the Universe before it, we have a clearer picture of what exactly happened to Ed and Lorraine Warren.
6. ‘Annabelle Comes Home‘
‘Annabelle Comes Home’ kicks off in 1971, right after Ed and Lorraine Warren obtain possession of the haunted doll from Debbie, the nursing student seen in ‘The Conjuring.’ The film depicts the Warrens constructing a blessed cage for Annabelle, using glass from a church window, with assistance from Father Gordon from ‘The Conjuring.’
Fast-forwarding a year to 1972, the movie unfolds after the events of the first film, showcasing the Warrens’ growing reputation and featuring artifacts like the music box from the Perron case. Alongside this, it introduces new demonic entities and lays the foundation for Judy Warren’s expanding psychic abilities, foreshadowed further in ‘The Conjuring 2,’ set after these events.
7. ‘The Curse of La Llorona‘
‘The Curse of La Llorona’ is not directly tied to ‘The Conjuring’ Universe but still, Father Perez reprises his role and uses his knowledge of Annabelle to help Anna Tate-Garcia.
‘The Curse of La Llorona’ takes place in Los Angeles in 1973, with a brief prologue showing La Llorona’s origins set in 1673. Father Perez explicitly references his encounter with Annabelle from ‘Annabelle,’ with the infamous doll making a cameo through a flashback. Father Perez also hints at the Warrens to handle the Garcia family’s case, making the connection to the broader Conjuring universe evident.
8. ‘The Conjuring 2‘
‘The Conjuring 2’ kicks off with a brief 1976 segment, as the Warrens investigate the Amityville murders, leading to Lorraine Warren’s first encounter with Valak, the Demon Nun. Jumping to 1977, the film focuses on the Hodgson family in Enfield, London, haunted initially by the ghost of Bill Wilkins.
However, it is later revealed that Valak is the true malevolent force manipulating Wilkins. The majority of the movie centers on Lorraine’s intense confrontation with Valak, who can even block her psychic abilities, while Ed protects the Hodgson family from other demonic entities like the Crooked Man.
9. ‘The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It‘
The third installment in the main ‘Conjuring’ series places Ed and Lorraine Warren at the forefront, showing another case from their real-life files. The narrative centers on Arne Johnson who fatally stabbed his girlfriend’s employer and landlord, claiming possession during the act.
The Warrens had been involved earlier, assisting the Glatzel family, who believed young David Glatzel was possessed. Arne, who was dating David’s sister, attended exorcisms where he allegedly taunted one of David’s demons, leading to his own possession and subsequent aberrant behavior, culminating in the murder.
Where to watch all movies from ‘The Conjuring’ Universe?
All ‘The Conjuring,’ ‘Annabelle’ and ‘The Nun’ movies can be either streamed on Max or rented from Apple TV. ‘Annabelle’ (2014) can also be streamed on Hulu without the Max bundle, while ‘The Nun II’ can be watched in cinemas only or rented on Apple TV.
Will there be more ‘Conjuring’ movies?
There will be more installments in ‘The Conjuring’ Universe. After the release of ‘Annabelle Comes Home’ in June 2019, Gary Dauberman hinted at a potential fourth ‘Annabelle’ film and the prospect of spin-offs focusing on other cursed artifacts and their entities. He mentioned detailed backstories for specific entities, opening the door for various sub-genres within the horror franchise. Ideas discussed included a psychological horror film centered around The Bride and a slasher horror film featuring The Samurai.
In June 2021, Michael Chaves revealed that ‘The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It’ was initially intended to directly connect with a spin-off centered around the Lost Demon, a demonic character cut from the third Conjuring. Although this project was not green-lit, Chaves expressed hope for its future approval and mentioned that James Wan has multiple Warren “cases up his sleeve.”
In August 2023, Dauberman suggested potential projects exploring the Nun’s storyline between the 1950s and 1960s, and in September of the same year, he expressed his desire as a fan to see a project where various demonic entities from each installment antagonize the Warrens.
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