Like the "The Conjuring", its prequel, and equally, if not more terrifying, supernatural thriller "Annabelle" too is based on real-life events. The sure-fire Halloween blockbuster tells the story Annabelle, the haunted doll and its hauntings during the 1970s.
The case of Annabelle, the haunted doll was attended by the famous demonologist couple Lorraine and Ed Warren, after two young nurses claimed that they "communicated with a human spirit" and that one of them was attacked physically by the Raggedy Ann doll.
According to Night Watch Paranormal, the story of Annabelle began when a woman purchased the Raggedy Ann doll for her daughter's birthday. Pleased with the doll, Donna, the daughter, placed it on her bed in the apartment she shared with her friend from nurses program, and didn't give it a second thought until a few days later.
However, shortly afterwards, the roommates started to notice certain freaky things about the doll, like it moved on its own, even travelling from room to room, sat cross-legged on the couch with its arms folded, and leaned against a chair in the dining room. Several times, Donna placed the doll on the couch before leaving for work, but would return home to find the doll back in her room on the bed with the door closed, according to Lorraine and Ed Warren's The New England Society for Psychic Research website.
Not only could the haunted doll move, it could apparently write too. Shortly after the movements were notices, Donna and roommate Angie also began to find pencilled messages on parchment paper (they did not have any parchment paper in the house) that read "Help Us" and "Help Lou", in the handwriting of a small child.
One night Donna came home to find Annabelle sitting on her bed, with blood drops on the back of her hands and chest. Finally, unable to handle the antics of the haunted doll, the roommates contacted a medium, who held a séance and introduced the duo to the spirit of Annabelle Higgins.
The medium revealed to the nurses that Annabelle was a young girl who used to reside on the property before their apartments were built and said they used to be "happy times". She was only seven years old when her lifeless body was found in the field upon which their apartment complex now stands.
Annabelle apparently told the medium that she felt comfortable with Donna and Angie and wanted to be loved by them and live with them. Feeling compassion for the little girl, they gave her permission to inhibit the Raggedy Ann doll, only to find that Annabelle was not what she claimed to be.
Lou, a friend of Donna's was with them since the day Annabelle arrived and being quite wary of the doll had warned them that it was "evil" and that they should get rid of it. His dislike for Annabelle was evidently reciprocated, considering the number of times he was attacked by the haunted doll.
Once, he awoke in the night to find her "slowly gilding up his leg" before moving onto his chest and "strangling" him. Lou, who at first believed the ordeal was a bad dream, claims to have blacked out from the strangulation. Next day, Lou, hearing strange noises coming from Donna's room, searched for a possible break in, and felt a presence behind him. He was soon cut and left with "7 distinct claw marks" on his chest.
Lou's injuries caused Donna to finally believe in the doll's evil nature. After contacting a priest to help her with the matter, Donna was later directed to speak with the Warrens.
The Warrens, found that Annabelle was not possessed, but manipulated by an inhuman spirit who created the illusion that the doll was alive. The Warrens said the spirit, who only pretended to be a young girl in order to con Donna and Angie, was ultimately looking to possess a human body.
In order to stupor the spirits' attempt, the Warrens had the apartment exorcised by a priest and took the doll with them home to Connecticut before she was moved to a special case built inside the Warrens Occult Museum.
Is Annabelle responsible for these deaths?
Annabelle is said to have tormented several individuals: A priest who visited the Warren's home and insulted Annabelle, telling her "you can't hurt anyone," was reportedly involved in a near-fatal car crash after the visit. A couple who visited the haunted doll at the Occult museum reportedly crashed their motorcycle after poking fun at the doll's abilities. The man died instantly after crashing into a tree enroute home from the museum and though his girlfriend survived, she had to be hospitalised for a year after the crash.
Watch the trailer for Warner Brother's Annabelle: