Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City is the official title of the upcoming reboot. The film will be directed by Johannes Roberts and will serve as a complete overhaul of the film series based on the long-running video game series. Paul W.S. Anderson originally kicked off the Resident Evil film series with 2002's Milla Jovovich starrer. That series spawned six films and went on to gross over $1 billion in box office, but was still criticized by fans for drastically departing from the story of its source material.
That all is set to change with the upcoming Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City, which will adapt the first two video games in the series and hue much closer to the original story. The film is set to star Kaya Scodelario as Claire Redfield, Robbie Amell as Chris Redfield, and Hannah John-Kammen as Jill Valentine. Welcome to Raccoon City will be set in 1998 (the first game was released in 1996) and follow its characters as they explore the secrets of the Spencer Mansion.
Director Roberts revealed the full title of Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City at SXSW (via IGN). Until this announcement, the film had simply been titled Resident Evil, as indicated by a poster previously released by one of the film's stars Chad Rook.
Welcome to Raccoon City is as good a moniker as any for the upcoming film and a sly indicator that the film will be going back to basics. The Jovovich-led franchise briefly explored both the Spencer Mansion, featured prominently in the first game, and Raccoon City, the location of the second game, but mostly charted new territory with future entries. With the reboot returning to the original games, Welcome to Raccoon City serves as both a re-introduction and a sign that this film will be different than its predecessors.
Roberts and the studio likely also wanted to differentiate the film from the various other Resident Evil adaptations set to release in the coming years, including an animated series and a CGI-animated film, both set for release on Netflix. With filming complete on Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City and a September release date, it seems that the film reboot could hit screens first and usher in a new era for the franchise, one that could course correct the films and spawn a new series that will please both fans both familiar and unfamiliar with the iconic video games.
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