See the 1st teaser for August sci-fi scarefest 'Alien: Romulus' (video)

Director Fede Álvarez ("Evil Dead," "Don't Breathe") has the difficult task of resurrecting the languishing "Alien" theatrical franchise with his upcoming "Alien: Romulus."

The R-rated feature film, which will be released this August, is the first of a pair of competing "Alien" projects currently waiting in the wings, the other being an upcoming FX/Hulu TV series from creator/showrunner Noah Hawley ("Legion," "Fargo"). "Alien: Romulus" is set sometime within the 57-year narrative chasm existing between "Alien" (1979) and "Aliens" (1986) and concerns more close encounters with the lethal xenomorphs.

"Alien" fans can now whet their appetites for the coming film: We just got an unnerving sneak peak at "Alien: Romulus," courtesy of a trailer from 20th Century Studios, which you can watch in the window above.

Related: Everything we know about 'Alien: Romulus'

(Image credit: 20th Century Studios)

It's a moody, blood-streaked, claustrophobic teaser that harkens back to director Ridley Scott's 1979 masterpiece, "Alien," and even borrows eerie sonic cues from that seminal movie's vintage trailer. While it's genuinely promising seeing the tone and imagery, not to mention the flurry of flying facehuggers, we're not convinced that mimicking Scott's magnum opus is the best decision — but we remain optimistic.

Here's the "Alien: Romulus" official synopsis:

"The sci-fi/horror-thriller takes the phenomenally successful 'Alien' franchise back to its roots: While scavenging the deep ends of a derelict space station, a group of young space colonizers come face to face with the most terrifying lifeform in the universe." 

Álvarez is an enthusiastic admirer of "Alien's" six-film legacy, and he said he hopes to evoke the flavor of Scott's and James Cameron's earlier contributions.

"I love all of those movies," the Uruguayan filmmaker said in a Hollywood Reporter interview. "I didn’t want to omit or ignore any of them when it comes to connections at a story level, character level, technology level and creature level. There's always connections, from 'Alien' to 'Alien: Covenant.'"

"The way we crafted it is, if you haven’t seen any of them, I'm jealous because you'll have an incredible experience," he added. "You'll have all these worlds of 'Alien' coming at you, and you've never experienced any of this. You don't know how the creature is born, and you don’t know any of these things. That's fantastic. You'll have a blast."

This upcoming studio tentpole stars Cailee Spaeny ("Priscilla"), David Jonsson ("Agatha Christie’s Murder is Easy"), Archie Renaux ("Shadow and Bone"), Isabela Merced ("The Last of Us"), and Spike Fearn ("Aftersun"). Álvarez shoots from a script he co-wrote with longtime collaborator Rodo Sayagues ("Don’t Breathe 2"), based on characters concocted by "Alien" luminaries Dan O’Bannon and Ronald Shusett. 

"Alien: Romulus" was produced by Ridley Scott ("Blade Runner," "Black Hawk Down"), who also produced and directed the series' most recent entries, "Prometheus" in 2012 and the appalling, ultraviolent "Alien: Covenant" from 2017. 

Joining Scott are Michael Pruss ("Boston Strangler"), and Walter Hill ("Alien"), with Fede Álvarez, Elizabeth Cantillon ("Charlie’s Angels"), Brent O’Connor ("Bullet Train"), and Tom Moran ("Unstoppable") acting as executive producers. 

20th Century Studios' "Alien: Romulus" will be unleashed on Aug. 16, 2024.

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Jeff Spry
Contributing Writer

Jeff Spry is an award-winning screenwriter and veteran freelance journalist covering TV, movies, video games, books, and comics. His work has appeared at SYFY Wire, Inverse, Collider, Bleeding Cool and elsewhere. Jeff lives in beautiful Bend, Oregon amid the ponderosa pines, classic muscle cars, a crypt of collector horror comics, and two loyal English Setters.