‘The Conjuring 3’: Michael Chaves to direct

Paranormal investigators Mr and Mrs Warren (2nd R, R,) are to return for “The Conjuring 3.” © 2016 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. and Ratpack-Dune Entertainment LLC. All Rights Reserved. (AFP pic)

With Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga expected to return for a third mainline entry to “The Conjuring” horror movie franchise, one major player who is shifting roles is director, creator and producer James Wan.

Having made his name with 2004 survival horror “Saw” movies, Wan launched both “Insidious” and “The Conjuring” in the years that followed.

He then steered action movie “Furious 7” before taking command of December’s DC superhero film “Aquaman” and, while he remains in place as one of the producers of “The Conjuring 3,” it’s Michael Chaves who will be in the director’s chair.

Chaves turned heads with 2016’s short but slick horror film “The Maiden,” while he and Wan acquainted themselves better through “The Curse of La Llorona,” currently heading towards an April 2019 debut.

“While working closely with Chaves on ‘The Curse of La Llorona,’ I got to know him as a filmmaker,” Wan said in a statement carried by The Hollywood Reporter.

“Chaves’ ability to bring emotion to a story, and his understanding of mood and scares, make him a perfect fit to direct the next Conjuring film.”

Debuting in 2013, the franchise has already extended to include two “Annabelle” spin-offs (with a third in production for 2019) as well as September 2018 hit “The Nun.”