Supernatural horror is a staple of the film industry and director James Wans The Conjuring series which debuted in 2013 has revived the genre like the few films that came before it. And part of what made this movie and every subsequent entry so compelling and terrifying is that they are so rooted in real life. So when another movie in the series debuted in 2021 fans were left asking one big question Is The Conjuring 3 based on a true story?
Released in 2021 The Conjuring The Devil Made Me Do is already rooted in the horrific and reallife murder trial of 19yearold Arnie Cheyenne Johnson who was accused of killing homeowner Alan Bono in 1981. In court Johnson claimed that demons were possessing him when he stabbed Bono to death and that the demon made him do it.
The horrific incident in Brookfield Connecticut marked the first time anyone had been killed in the towns 193year history and Johnsons shocking defense that a demon had ordered him to kill had never been used in an American courtroom before. Although Johnsons case is sensationally portrayed on screen in The Conjuring 3 director Michael Chaves took extensive creative liberties with it. For example Johnson claimed that he had no memory of the murder leaving Chavez to explain the details of it himself. With fanciful suicide attempts and a fanatical astrologer personality the movie wasnt entirely accurate.
So what is the true story of The Conjuring 3? Lets take a look at what may have really happened on that bloody winter night in 1981 before an incident with his landlord that served as the true story behind The Conjuring 3 Arne Cheyenne Johnson had an impeccable track record. Living in the sleepy town of Brookfield Connecticut Johnson was engaged to a woman named Debbie Glatzel but not all was well with the couple. In fact in the year before the murder Glatzels 11yearold brother David started acting strangely. The child reportedly told both Johnson and Glatzel that he was tortured by an old man with big black eyes a thin face with animal features and coarse teeth pointed ears and horns and hooves.
When Johnson stayed with Glatzels to help he began to hear noises from the attic himself. Accordingly the Glatzel family summoned paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren in desperation when David began hissing grabbing and speaking in strange voices. The Warrens concluded that David was possessed by a demon although several psychiatrists diagnosed him with a learning disability. However the family is invited to the church. With the priests in attendance Warrens performed three exorcisms on David who was allegedly elevated and even predicted that Johnson would kill someone. In October Johnson allegedly told Satan to take me and leave David in peace.
He claimed in court that he overlooked a local well where David said he first met the Devil. Johnson then began to fall into a coma growling and hallucinating all of which he will no longer remember. Finally on February 16 1981 the true story behind The Conjuring 3 reached its climax. Johnson was meeting Glatzel at a kennel owned by Alan Bono who was also the owner of Johnsons home. Glatzel worked there tending the dogs and bringing her nineyearold cousin Marie for the whole day.
When Bono is said to have caught Mary in a drunken rage Glatzel claimed that Johnson flew himself in a rage growling like an animal trying to get Bono out of her. He ended up stabbing Bono with a fiveinch pocket knife in the stomach and chest. Johnson was arrested two miles away and brought to trial in November. Much to the confusion of the courtroom Johnson claimed he had no recollection of the murder because he was possessed by a demon at the time.