This past weekend, Insidious 2 tore up the box office, scoring a very respectable $42 million on a $5 million budget. That makes the film extremely profitable, when you consider that it just opened this past weekend. When I reviewed The Conjuring, directed by Wan, I had this to say:
James Wan, the director of this film, has proven himself to be a master at the haunted house genre of horror films. There is no other director that has consistently made quality, frightening films. From his humble beginnings directing Saw, to Insidious, and everything in between, (Death Sentence, Dead Silence), Wan has been a stable, reliable director of horror films. More recently, he has been leaning towards less graphic and more subtle terror, and I believe that’s where he has really started to shine. His work in Insidious was borderline brilliant, and with The Conjuring, he takes what he has learned and runs with it, taking us along for the ride.
I have yet to see Insidious 2, but my wife did and she says the ending leaves it wide open for another sequel. But will Wan and screenwriter Leigh Whannell return?
Cinema Blend interviewed Jason Blum, producer of Insidious 2, and he had this to say:
In the final scene of Chapter 2, there’s a clear set up for a third film. Do you and Wan have a plan for a third installation or—
I would love to make a third film, but James and Leigh will not hear of it until this movie comes out. So, I’d be thrilled to make a third movie, but there is no current plan to make a third movie at all. Only in my head!
So the question remains. Will Wan return? He has proven to be a very adept director of horror films and I have been very excited to see his finished works. Then Screenrant pointed out this little tidbit from an interview Wan gave at Moviefone:
The film ends with a clear set-up for “Chapter 3.” Do you plan to direct that one too?
I’m going to go on record and say I am finished with the horror genre. “Conjuring” and “Insidious 2” are my two last scary movies.
Why is that?
I spent the last ten years of my life doing this. It’s time for a change, for goodness sake!
Do you feel you’d become stuck in the genre?
That applies to anything. Hollywood puts you in a box. If you do a successful comedy, then you’re know as The Comedy Guy. If you do a successful car chase movie, then you become that guy. So I’m a student of cinema, so I just want to make sure I get the chance to make other kinds of films.
So, from the horses mouth, so to speak. James Wan is done with horror films. With him moving on to direct Fast and Furious 7, it would seem that he is done with the horror genre. . .at least for now. Blum is doubtful, though, saying this:
“I think he says he’s not gonna make another horror movie, but I’m sure that he will and it will be even better for having done Fast and Furious.”
When Fast and Furious 7 releases, we will know for sure whether Wan is giving up horror for good. If he moves on to another low-budget haunted house story, we will know. In the few films he has directed, he has carved out a niche that many other directors strive for. He has proven to be a unique director who understands cinema and understands what scares us. To lose a voice like that from horror will be a travesty.
I can accept that he wants to do different things and other genres of film. I cannot blame him. I’m just worried that once he hits those other genres, we will lose him forever. Horror cinema need visionary directors like James Wan. Let us hope that this is not the end of Wan’s horror career.