Samara Morgan was born to a single mother, identified only as Evelyn, at
Saint Mary Magdalen Women's Shelter in Washington state. Evelyn was aware early
on that Samara was no ordinary baby, as she had been born mentally unstable and
would never sleep, but only complained if she was near water. Evelyn tried to
drown Samara in a decorative pool at the shelter, later claiming that Samara telepathically
told her to drown her.
After that, shelter administrators put Samara up for adoption, and Evelyn was
sent to a psychiatric hospital.
Samara was adopted by horse ranchers Richard and Anna
Morgan from Moesko Island, who had
tried and failed to have a child of her own. Soon after, Anna began to go
insane, disturbed by horrifying visions Samara was somehow feeding into her
mind. Shortly afterward, Samara was placed in a psychiatric hospital, where
medical studies showed the girl possessed a rare psychic ability known as projected
thermography, allowing her to
psychically "burn" images from her mind onto surfaces, or even into the minds of
others. She never slept and was completely insensitive to pain. She also
apparently didn't know how to control her abilities.
Eventually, she was
released from the hospital at Richard's request (despite doctors' objections)
and subsequently forced to live in the barn in the hope that the distance would
alleviate Anna's visions. The visions continued, however, and most of the horses
living in the barn also went insane, driving themselves off a cliff to be away
from Samara. Unable to deal with the continuing torment, Anna murdered Samara. She suffocated her with a black garbage bag
before dropping her into a watery grave at the bottom of a well on remote,
mountainous land the Morgans owned and later sold. Samara survived the
suffocation attempt and the fall however, and lived in the well for seven days,
tearing her own fingernails off trying to get out by climbing up the sides. The
only visible light came from the edge of the well covering, forming a faint
ring. Anna committed suicide soon
thereafter by jumping off a nearby cliff on the Washington coastline.
However, Samara's spirit lived on. Eventually a camping resort was built on
the site, with a log cabin built over the well. Samara's spirit created a curse
in the form of a blank, home-made VHS tape, which contained a series of
grainy, disturbing black and white images that were inspired by her life and
death. Those who watched the tape would immediately receive a phone call; when
they answered they would hear Samara whisper "Seven days." After seven days they
would die. After journalist Rachel Keller's niece fell victim to the curse, she
investigated and discovered the tape and its origins. (The Ring).
Towards the end of the first film, Rachel discovered Samara's corpse at the
bottom of the well and gave her a proper burial, presumably putting her spirit
to rest. Samara was not appeased, however, and killed the last person to have
watched the tape -- Rachel's ex-boyfriend, Noah. The way in which people die
from watching the tape was revealed. Samara's body, a waterlogged corpse, passed
into the real world from the video as it played on the VCR, and passed upon
them, paralyzing them with fear. While it was apparent that people died of fear
at the idea that the television would come on and show the deaths, this aspect
is new, and was is the fear of Samara coming to them in person which killed
them, possibly in combination with something she does.
Rachel and her son Aidan realized that the only way to escape the curse was to
copy the tape and show it to someone else....