James Wan last released horror movie was 2016’s The Conjuring 2 – but he already has his return to horror ready to go for 2021. It’s Malignant, a film that was initially set to open in 2020, until all that bad stuff happened to delay it. Malignant is now set to arrive in theaters and on HBO Max this year, and while we still have no idea what the damn movie’s about, we now know what it’s rated: R, for “Strong horror violence, gruesome images, and for language.” While Wan is the filmmaker who launched the blood-filled Saw franchise, most of his horror movies haven’t been abundantly gory, so it sounds like he’s got something special cooked up for horror fans here.
I’m a big fan of Mr. James Wan, let me tell ya! And while I very much enjoyed his bombastic take on Aquaman, I’ve longed for him to return to horror – the genre he made his bones on. And thankfully, that’s happened: he’s made a new horror movie called Malignant. In a sane, safe world, we’d have seen Malignant last year. But we don’t live in a sane or safe world (*motions towards literally everything going on right now*), so Malignant got delayed.
It will now arrive sometime in 2021 – and since it’s a Warner Bros. movie, it’s destined to drop on HBO Max the same day it hits theaters (whatever day that might be; it hasn’t been confirmed yet). And what is Malignant about? No clue! The plot remains a complete mystery, although it’s safe to assume this isn’t yet another Conjuring Universe movie (unless it secretly is, which is what happened with the Wan-produced The Curse of La Llorona). All we know is that it stars Annabelle Wallis, Jake Abel, George Young, Maddie Hasson, Michole Briana White, Jacqueline McKenzie, and Mckenna Grace, and it’s a horror movie.
Well, okay, that’s not all we know. Today we have a new bit of information: the film’s rating. It’s rated R for “Strong horror violence, gruesome images, and for language.” Now, Wan is no stranger to an R-rated film. His Conjuring movies were rated R, as was Saw, Dead Silence, and the forgotten Death Sentence. And while Dead Silence and Death Sentence had some bloody imagery, and Saw gave birth to a gore-soaked franchise, Wan hasn’t really made something with “strong horror violence” in some time, so this is certainly interesting. It’s been reported that the flick is inspired by Giallo films – the type of gruesome, stylish Italian horror films directed by Dario Argento, Mario Bava, and Lucio Fulci.
Hopefully we’ll learn more about the film (and get a trailer) soon.
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