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Annabelle Comes Home: Latest chapter in Conjuring Universe gets trailer

Get ready for one hellish homecoming.

The trailer for Annabelle Comes Home, the third film in the Annabelle series and the seventh entry in what we can now officially refer to as the Conjuring Universe, was posted yesterday to Warner Brothers Pictures' YouTube Channel. Like its predecessors, it promises atmospheric spookiness, Easter eggs galore, and more jump scares than you can shake a cursed artifact at.

This time around, scribe Gary Dauberman — who penned the first two Annabelle films as well as last year's The Nun — is taking over the helm. Annabelle Comes Home will mark his feature directorial debut, and if this trailer is any indication, it's a well-deserved promotion. It's also a show of confidence from executive producer James Wan (who directed the first two Conjuring flicks and acts as the Supreme Overseer of the entire universe), because — to draw a comparison to another somewhat popular cinematic universe — this entry looks a bit like the Civil War of Conjuring movies. 

The spot opens in the home of demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, reprising their roles from the main series) as they're explaining to visitors the contents of a carefully guarded, locked room within their abode. "Everything you see in here is either haunted, cursed, or has been used in some kind of ritualistic practice," Ed says in voiceover, as the possessed doll Annabelle's creepy visage fills the screen. "Nothing's a toy... it's safer for these things to be in here than out there. Sometimes it's better to keep the genie in the bottle." Of course, we all know that Annabelle has a way of not staying put for too terribly long, and trouble soon arrives in the form of Mary Ellen (Madison Iseman, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle) and her friend Daniela (Katie Sarife, Supernatural). The pair are babysitting for the Warren's young daughter Judy (McKenna Grace, Captain Marvel), and it's not too long before Daniela in particular begins to express an unhealthy curiosity about her new employers' stash.

"Don't your parents keep any creepy stuff around?" she asks Judy, who sagely replies, "We keep it all locked away in a room... so we're safe. It's not really good for anyone to go in there." Of course, the very next shot is of Daniela going right on in there, then taking her sweet time in evaluating every cursed object the room has to offer (many of which astute fans will recognize from previous Conjuring flicks). Her attention is soon drawn to Annabelle, who sits in a locked glass case underneath a huge sign reading, "WARNING! POSITIVELY DO NOT OPEN." "What did you do to get in there?" Daniela asks the doll — but the babysitter is distracted by a rocking chair which starts to slowly rock on its own. Suddenly, the door to the chamber of horrors slams ominously shut — and lo and behold, Annabelle is now missing from her case. "I like your doll," a disembodied child's voice whispers, right before Daniela finds herself in Jump Scare City.

Over a series of quick shots (including the forbidden room's resident haunted typewriter typing out the words "miss me?" over and over), we hear Daniela admit to Judy that she let Annabelle out; when the child fearfully asks Daniela what else she touched, the babysitter can only reply "everything." We then see Mary Ellen answering the Warrens' door for a mysterious little girl, who asks to play with Annabelle. "I think you have the wrong house, there's no Annabelle here," the teenager responds; the little girl creepily begs to differ. 

Next, a clue that Judy may be carrying on the family tradition (perhaps even in future installments). "I sometimes see things," she tells Mary Ellen, "like how my Mom sees things." In voiceover, Lorraine warns us as to the nature of Annabelle's threat: "The doll — it's a beacon for other spirits," she says, as we see a child's shadow on the wall of Judy's room morphing into a hooded, adult figure. A title card then finally confirms what we're seeing: "Welcome to the home of the Conjuring Universe," it reads, before the spot returns us to Judy's bedroom for one last excruciating jump scare involving a peek under the covers that the little girl really should have known better than to take.

It certainly looks like Annabelle Comes Home will tie into the main Conjuring series in a way that no previous spin-off film has, and Dauberman and Wan have explained that the cursed doll will basically be bringing all of the Warrens' previous exploits back to haunt them, literally. At last year's Comic Con in San Diego, Dauberman — then still in the middle of writing the script — told the assembled crowd that the Annabelle "awakens the evil" within the spook vault, with Wan elaborating that she "activates all the other haunted artifacts in that room. So, it's basically A Night at the Museum, with Annabelle!"

If you're thinking that this flick looks and sounds a lot like a Conjuring movie in all but name, well, you're not alone. While the previous Annabelle flicks focused entirely on the doll's history, this threequel brings her story squarely into the present day and the main Conjuring timeline; the series' other spin-off films, The Nun and the forthcoming The Curse of La Llorona, are similarly set in the past and explore the origins of some of the demonic entities with which the Warrens would eventually cross paths. 

We're thinking this means that Annabelle Comes Home will serve to set up the long-awaited Conjuring 3, which is slated to be released in September of next year and will see La Llorona helmer Michael Chaves take over the director's chair. So far, there are no other Conjuring Universe flicks on the slate until then — but fortunately, Annabelle's third go-round looks like it'll be a full-course meal of the series' signature creepiness. The flick hits the big screen on June 28.