Alien is returning to the big screen, this time sans Ridley Scott in the director’s chair or Michael Fassbender’s android with a God complex. Shepherding the franchise forward into a new era is Fede Alvarez, the director behind the 2013 remake of Evil Dead and the 2016 slasher Don’t Breathe. As revealed in the first trailer for the film, Alien: Romulus looks like a return to the roots of the series: a space station and its crew, including star Cailee Spaeny (Priscilla), run afoul of a swarm of facehuggers and all hell breaks loose.

The situation is very reminiscent of Ripley’s own nightmare on the Nostromo back in the 1979 original, and it’s clear shots of Spaeny’s character Raines armed with a Pulse Rifle are meant to evoke memories of Aliens, too. That’s on purpose, of course, since the movie is not only bringing back the aesthetics of those classic sci-fi horror films but is actually set between the two films on the Alien universe timeline. But exactly how long after the Nostromo disaster does this movie take place? It’s a question detail-hungry fans have wanted answered from the mysterious project for months. At last, Alvarez has the answer, which he shared during a trailer breakdown with Total Film.

“It takes place 20 years after the first film,” Alvarez reveals, while talking about the retro-futuristic look of the tech in the movie. “Technology in the world of Alien can change vastly, but I think it’s not dependent on time. It’s dependent on place. Where you are… So the characters of this movie and the world are very blue-collar. The technology is still very low-tech and analog. And, look, I’m a kid from the ‘80s. Any monitor with some VHS tracking issues puts a lot of joy in my heart.”

He doesn’t go further into why the movie is set so close to the first film, hinting simply that “there were narrative reasons why.”

In case you want to put an exact year to Alien: Romulus, the original movie takes place in 2122, which means the new film is set in 2142, but still 37 years before the events of Aliens.

Alvarez also took some time to detail the movie’s space station setting. Called Renaissance Station, Alvarez explains that the research station is “made of two big models that are connected. One is Remus, the other one is Romulus. And that’s as much as I can tell you.”

The myth of Romulus and Remus about the founding of Rome actually plays an integral part to the story, according to the director: “It’s not a siblinghood that went down the right path. [Alien: Romulus] is a film about siblinghood. A lot of the character stories are related to siblinghood.”

But beyond its classical and aesthetic aspirations, Alvarez is clear about what the film is at its core: “Really, the movie is a survival horror, just like the first one. At the core of it, that’s what the movie is. It’s my favorite kind of horror when all you have to do is survive it.”

That’s not to say it won’t offer more for diehard Alien fans who love the universe’s lore and mysteries: “There are many kinds of Alien fans out there, and I love a lot of the aspects of these movies. I love the mystery of what [Weyland-Yutani] is trying to do, things that have to do with the creature, things that go beyond just running around, and trying to not die. So for people who like that, like me, they will definitely find a good story.”

Sounds like a blast, we’re in!

Alien: Romulus opens in theaters on Aug. 16.

The post Alien: Romulus Timeline Explained by Fede Alvarez in Trailer Breakdown appeared first on Den of Geek.

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