Rumors are a dime a dozen, but the price goes up when they get national attention across multiple mainstream media and social media platforms – no matter how absurd they might be. That’s the case with one making the high-level rounds concerning Annabelle, the alleged haunted doll that inspired the Conjuring movie series, the series named after the doll and a few other films. Needless to say, the movie producers might be worried – or thrilled – at the rumor that Annabelle has escaped her current home and is on the loose somewhere, wreaking havoc, having new movie-worthy adventures and inspiring stay-at-homes to stream the flicks. Has Annabelle really gone walkabout?
The Annabelle doll escaped on august 14, 2020 at 3:00AM in The Warrens’ Occult Museum in Monroe, Connecticutt, United States.
That’s one of many tweets posted shortly after someone updated the Wikipedia entry for Annabelle (didn’t we tell you not to trust Wikipedia?) and then someone else posted it on social media and lit the viral fuse. (You can read some of them here.) Leave it to Snopes to trace the reason for the posting back to the source – an interview in The Hollywood Reporter with Annabelle Wallis, the actress who played Mia Form in “Annabelle.” In what can best be described as a real-life version of the children’s game “Telephone” (ironically known as “Chinese whispers in the UK), Wallis was describing a scene in her last movie, “The Mummy,” where the mummy escapes and Chinese social media sites (hence the irony) mistranslated the story as Annabelle the doll (not the actress) escaped.
As one might expect, the next place the story exploded was on the phone of the Occult Museum, prompting Tony Spera, the son-in-law of the late Ed and Lorraine Warren and curator of the museum – which has been closed since 2017 due to a zoning violation – to do the right thing and ignore the social media uproar. Ha-ha – that’s what we would do but Tony Spera instead uploaded a YouTube video (watch it here) to let the world know the truth:
“I’m in here, in the museum, because of the rumors that Annabelle has escaped. I gotta tell you something. I don’t know if you’re gonna wanna hear this or not, but Annabelle did not escape… She didn’t take a trip. She didn’t fly first class, and she didn’t go out to visit her boyfriend. Remember, I have high-tech security here. If she had left the museum I’d have instantly know if something happened or somebody broke in. I have good alarm systems here and the police are good to respond. They respond within a couple of minutes, maybe, if that.”
To add validity to his claim, Spera showed the actual Annabelle in her glass case. Needless to say, this proves nothing … to those who want the rumor to be real. Nor does the removal of the false info on the Wikipedia page — maybe they’re in on the escape!
It’s truly a sign of the strange world and year we’re living in that a rumor about a doll can generate such attention and bring real news to a momentary pause. Fortunately, 2020 has been here before and the real news is back scaring us far worse than an escaped haunted doll.