‘Insidious’ and ‘The Conjuring’ Were Both Directed by James Wan, but There’s Something Else the 2 Movies Share

James Wan is the director of Insidious and The Conjuring — two horror movies with antagonists that will haunt you even after the film has stopped rolling. But there’s something else the two Wan films have in common. 

Writer/actor Leigh Whannell and Lin Shaye with 'Insidious' and 'The Conjuring' director James Wan
Leigh Whannell, Lin Shaye, and James Wan | Angela Weiss/Getty Images

James Wan movies have introduced audiences to terrifying villains 

Most people know Wan for the Saw films and their master of torment, Jigsaw (Tobin Bell). In 2010, Wan directed Insidious, another terrifying movie about evil spirits latching on to an unconscious child and taking him into a realm called “The Further.”

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The Lipstick-Face Demon in Insidious is a horrific entity aptly named for the lipstick-like paint on his face. Also referred to as “The Man With Fire on His Face,” the demon seeks to latch on to Dalton (Ty Simpkins) to bring terror to the human world. 

In 2013, Wan introduced yet another horrifying antagonist to fans — Bathsheba. Based on actual events experienced by Ed and Lorraine Warren, The Conjuring tells the story of the Perron family, who were terrorized by the demon witch Bathsheba. 

‘Insidious’ and ‘The Conjuring’ have the same composer 

Joseph Bishara is a composer and music producer. Bishara got his start composing the Biblical drama Joseph’s Gift in 1998. Now, many people know Bishara for working with Wan on his horror films. Many recognize Bishara’s signature sound in movie scores like Insidious, Dark Skies, and The Conjuring.

Classical music and plenty of experimental and electronic sounds influence Bishara’s music. For example, the unsettling sounds on the Insidious score are the culmination of a multitude of violins. His distinct style and unique approach lend Bishara’s music to a certain genre of movies, which happen to be his favorite. 

Joseph Bishara from 'Insidious' and 'The Conjuring'
Joseph Bishara | Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images

Bishara loves the horror movie genre. “It is the one that [has] the most energy for me,” he notes in Scored to Death: Conversations with Some of Horror’s Greatest Composers by J. Blake Fichera. “There always just seemed to be something a little bit more compelling about being on the edge of everything going away.”

In addition to composing, Bishara has worked on several other aspects of movie-making. From production to sound design, Bishara has done it all. Bishara is also a talented actor who brings many of Wan’s villains to life. 

Joseph Bishara brings ‘The Conjuring’ and ‘Insidious’ villains to life

In addition to being a composer, Bishara has a handful of acting credits. Most of them are roles in Wan’s films. Bishara most notably plays the Lipstick-Face Demon and Bathsheba.

“I’ve always been interested in horror and those that create it in the various mediums,” the composer and actor told Dread Central. Bishara loves exploring movies from a musical sense, but he also enjoys getting to “explore the inside of the film.” 

Playing the demon roles in Wan’s movies helps influence the music Bishara composes, too. “I’m very grateful [to have] all of the on-set experience and body consciousness to draw on while scoring,” he added. 

Outside of Insidious and The Conjuring, Bishara also has roles in Annabelle and Annabelle: Creation, the demon in The Conjuring 2, the “Black Ooze” in Brightfall, and the “Night Hag” in Dreamkatcher