The Conjuring 2 Movie First Day Box Office Collection: “I would work with James Wan for eternity and into eternity’s afterlife,” Ms. Farmiga said via email. “Bottom line, he is a wizard-virtuoso, a master craftsman, AND IT IS FUN.” She added that he is “kind and funny and caring to boot and laughs at all my jokes. I was extremely disappointed in him for not choosing me for Dwayne Johnson’s role in ‘F7.’Mr. Wan’s technical crew moves with him from project to project (even “Furious 7”), including his regular editor, Kirk M. Morri, and, significantly, the sound designer Joe Dzuban and composer Joseph Bishara. “I’ve always said if I had to pinpoint what’s more important in a scary movie, the soundscape or the visuals, I’d pick the sound,” Mr. Wan said. “I reference movies like ‘Paranormal Activity,’ ‘Blair Witch,’ movies that don’t have a lot of whiz-bang visuals because they couldn’t afford to shoot whiz-bang visuals. But it’s the sound design that creates tension and atmosphere.”
Mr. Bishara said their process is as unconventional as the way Mr. Wan shoots his films, with their unnerving wide shots and disquieting angles. “How we arrive at something could be a response to a color, or a shot, or a description of a scene,” Mr. Bishara said. “And it grows from there. It seems James and I talk a lot more about ideas — on ‘Insidious,’ for instance, we talked a whole lot more about astral projection than we did music and sound.”
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Mr. Dzuban said the postproduction process brings out Mr. Wan’s passion. The director can work till 4 or 5 a.m., he added: “We put in really long hours on this last one, and we were working with classic mixers, guys who worked on ‘Empire Strikes Back,’ ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark.’ These guys are pushing retirement. And they’re getting tired. It’s like midnight, and James is just hitting his stride. He’s just waking up. And he wants to push, push, push.”Mr. Wan is among the more prominent and powerful Asians in Hollywood filmmaking. “Personally, and among those I know, he is valued, and just by his own success,” said Chris Tashima, a Japanese-American actor (“Under the Blood Red Sun”). “He pushes the meter in terms of diversity.”Many found “Furious 7” and its enormous box office a solid argument against traditional Hollywood attitudes about diversity in casting, even if that casting was based on a model established by six previous movies. Mr. Wan said he was of two minds. “I want whoever is best for my movie, which means it could be anyone,” he said. “If you’re great, I want to work with you.
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“But growing up, there were hardly any male Asian actors in Hollywood I could look up to, other than Bruce Lee. And how long ago was that? It’s not cool. It’s a little embarrassing. So it will depend on my project – in ‘Conjuring 2’ I had to stay true to the people in the story. But now that I’m in a position of more power, it’s something that I’m very mindful of.”Prior to the screening of The Conjuring 2, director James Wan declared his love of the great Hammer Horrors of the 40s/50s. If only he had the know-all to transfer this adoration to the creepy, if wholly unremarkable and quite extraordinarily unoriginal horror sequel. It’s predecessor, 2013s The Conjuring – although in and among the landfill horror churned out with factory made precision had the façade of remarkability-borrowed freely from everything from The Amityville Horror, to set pieces seemingly taken without care from The Exorcist. It’s sequel, if slightly superior, again falters in its almost abrasive lack of originality.