Is The Carta Monastery A Real Place? 'The Nun' Is Set In One Creepy Location
The Conjuring franchise is a monster in every sense of the word. In addition to being incredibly scary, the horror series is also wildly successful, and its latest installment, The Nun, will only add to the franchise's success. The film tells the story of a young nun who is sent to the Carta Monastery in Romania to investigate the suicide of another nun, and ends up uncovering a demonic nun who haunts the monastery. And since all of the prior Conjuring films were inspired by purportedly true events, it's no surprise that The Nun's Carta Monastery is a real place.
The Nun takes place in 1952, and it depicts Romania's Carta Monastery as an actual, functioning Abbey. This is where the movie starts to stray from real life. Although there is a Carta Monastery in Romania, which was built in the 13th century, it went out of use in the 15th century — some 500 years before the film takes place — according to Uncover Romania. The monastery scenes in the movie were actually filmed at Romania's Corvin Castle, according to IMDb, which was built around the same time the real Carta Monastery stopped being a functioning abbey. So if you went to visit the Carta Monastery today — which you totally can do, it's a popular tourist site — you won't find an abbey like the one seen in The Nun, you'll only encounter ruins. And you won't encounter any monks either — at least not any living ones.
There are claims that the Carta Monastery is haunted by the deceased Cistercian monks who called the abbey home over a half a millennium ago. The monastery is known locally as the Haunted Abbey, according to Romanian tourism site Tourist in Romania, and witnesses claim the cellar features odd occurrences like vibrating walls and chairs that move on their own. But that's not the only spooky spot in Romania from which The Nun may have derived inspiration.
In the movie, a nun is sent to investigate the death of another nun at a Romanian monastery, and such a tragic event happened in real life just 13 years ago. In 2005, a 23-year-old nun at the Romanian Orthodox monastery in Tanacu, Romania named Maricica Irina Cornici was killed by a priest and other nuns during an attempted exorcism. Cornici had claimed the devil was talking to her, according to CBS News, and as a result she was tied to a cross, gagged, and starved for three days, resulting in her death. The priest who led the exorcism, Daniel Petre Corogeanu, along with four nuns who assisted him, all faced charges and were sentenced to several years in prison in their connection with Cornici's death.
The filmmakers behind The Nun have not claimed to have been inspired by either the reported hauntings at the Carta Monastery or the death of Sister Maricica Irina Cornici, and the film's demonic nun — Valak — is actually based on a mythological demon from the ancient tome The Lesser Key of Solomon (and was never previously depicted as a nun). Still, it's easy to see the connections between Romania's real life scary monastic locations and The Nun's use of the Carta Monastery.