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Old Release Date, Cast And Plot - What We Know So Far

After a brief break from the big screen to work on Servant for Apple TV+, M. Night Shyamalan has finally returned with yet another eerie psychological horror. 

The filmmaker's newest venture is entitled Old, and sees a family vacationing on an isolated beach. What begins as an idyllic getaway quickly devolves into a nightmare as each member of the family starts rapidly aging — with a six-year old returning to the group as a grown-up young man. Shyamalan really likes to play with ideas that force audiences to imagine themselves in terrifying situations, and Old is no different. (What are the odds that there'll be a shocking, plot-ripping twist by the time the credits roll?)

The first teaser for the mysterious new horror debuted at the 2021 Super Bowl on February 7, instantly capturing the attention of millions of viewers. It's definitely a step away from Shyamalan's last cinematic outing, Glass, which offered a critique on the superhero genre in a typically twist-filled manner. But Old looks to deconstruct one of the most relatable fears that most audiences can connect to: aging too quickly and losing what little time you've got left.

From its star-studded cast to its strange premise and sooner-than-expected release date, here's everything we know about Old so far.

What's the release date for Old?

Back in September 2020, Shyamalan took to Twitter to reveal that he had started shooting the new horror-thriller movie, as well as to unveil the first sinister poster for Old, which features an hourglass filled with people instead of sand. It seems like Shyamalan had a quick turnaround on the production, since Old will debut in just a few months' time. That's the benefit of having a smaller, story-driven horror instead of an effects-heavy blockbuster, at least.

The Super Bowl teaser for Old confirmed the movie will arrive in theaters this summer; it's officially slated to debut on July 23. 

That said, though, with the ongoing global situation, it's entirely possible Old could face delays or head to streaming as a premium rental. It's the type of movie that might perform well as a rental if Universal heavily promotes it over the next few months; just look at the success of other recent horror releases like Host, His House, and The Invisible Man.

Who's in the cast of Old?

Shyamalan has amassed a talented bunch of actors for Old, with Phantom Thread's Vicky Krieps and Gael García Bernal playing the couple who first notice the beach's bizarre effects when their young son quickly turns into a fully-grown Alex Wolff from Ari Aster's Hereditary. Jojo Rabbit star Thomasin McKenzie will also appear as an older version of one of the children who find themselves thrust headfirst into puberty.

Additionally, Embeth Davidtz, probably best known to the masses as Miss Honey from Matilda, and Rufus Sewell play characters who are among the group affected by the creepy side effects of this holiday destination. The Devil All the Time star Eliza Scanlen is also part of the Old cast, and for the upcoming film, Lost's Ken Leung returns to the big screen for the first time since 2015's Star Wars: The Force Awakens. (Although we doubt he'll have Miles Straume's ability to talk to the dead in this one, which is a shame. It is an M. Night Shyamalan movie — it would be useful!)

What will happen in Old?

Based on the French graphic novel Sandcastle written by Pierre Oscar Lévy and illustrated by Frederik Peeters, Old sees a family trapped on a secluded beach as everyone begins to age at a terrifying rate. The group quickly start to lose their sanity as they no longer recognize their own selves — and the film even uses a dash of body-horror for good measure, as a surprise pregnancy catches a young woman off guard in a truly disturbing fashion.

The footage of Old shown at the 2021 Super Bowl shows members of the group searching for answers across the beach (as well as under water), with shots of Alex Wolff and Thomasin McKenzie's characters investigating something in a cave. With Shyamalan's infamous love of shocking third-act revelations, it'll be interesting to see why the horrifying phenomenon is happening to this specific group of people. One line of dialogue even suggests that it's being done to them by someone or something else: "We were chosen for a reason." Chosen by whom? Curious and curiouser. 

The original graphic novel from Lévy and Peeters doesn't offer much explanation behind the horrifying events, instead choosing to analyze the human condition a little deeper. Back in 2013, Peeters told Comic Book Resources that a shocking twist was originally part of the ending but was scrapped because it "would have destroyed the frightening dimension of the book." Perhaps viewers will see that Shyamalan used Lévy's original ending on the big screen when Old arrives on July 23.