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Cailee Spaeny Reveals Where ‘Alien: Romulus’ Falls in the Timeline

Cailee Spaeny, a woman with brown hair and a black jacket.

Fresh off her critically acclaimed performance in the titular role in Sofia Coppola’s Priscilla, Cailee Spaeny is preparing for her next role as the lead of Alien: Romulus. Directed by Fede Álvarez (Don’t Breathe), Alien: Romulus will be the ninth entry in the beloved science-fiction/horror franchise.

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While walking the red carpet at The Gotham Awards, Spaeny shared some details of the upcoming film with Variety, including where the film falls in the franchise’s timeline.

“It’s supposed to slot in between the first movie and the second movie,” Spaeny said. “They brought the same team from Aliens, the James Cameron film. The same people who built those xenomorphs actually came on and built ours. So getting to see the original design with the original people who have been working on these films for 45-plus years and has been so much of their life has been really incredible.”

It’s unclear if Romulus will reference Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) or the xenomorph attack onboard the Nostromo, which occurs in Alien (1979). The sequel Aliens (1986) occurs 57 years after the events of the first film, catching up with Ripley after she awakens from hypersleep. Most of the plot details have been kept under wraps, but the plot will likely involve the ominous Weyland-Yutani Corporation.

Spaeny added, “I love watching those old ‘70s, ‘80s action sci-fi films. And I’m such a fan of that IP and Sigourney Weaver. It’s legendary to get to be a part of it.”

Alien: Romulus will be the first Alien film since 2017’s Alien: Covenant. In addition to Spaeny, the film features Isabela Merced (Madame Web), David Jonsson (Rye Lane), Archie Renaux (Shadow and Bone), Spike Fearn (The Batman), and Aileen Wu (Closing Doors). The film, originally set for Hulu, will now receive a theatrical release. Romulus is also the first Alien film since the Disney-Fox merger.

In addition to the new film, FX is producing an as-yet-untitled Alien series created by Noah Hawley (Fargo). Timothy Olyphant is set to star in the series, which is expected to premiere sometime in 2025.

Alien: Romulus hits theaters on Aug. 16, 2024.

(featured image: Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images)

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Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.

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