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Resident Evil: Welcome To Raccoon City Release Date, Cast, And Plot - What We Know So Far

Audiences are headed back to Raccoon City for the very first time. 

The original "Resident Evil" video game has spawned an interactive empire of nearly 30 entries if you add up everything in its main series along with the spinoffs and remakes. Its movie adaptation sprouted its own long tail: six total films released between the 2002 original and 2017's "Resident Evil: The Final Chapter," each starring Milla Jovovich and each trying to one-up its predecessors in finding crazier ways to kill off characters. Earlier this year, Netflix released an animated film, "Resident Evil: Infinite Darkness." The streaming service is also releasing a live-action "Resident Evil" series starring Lance Reddick, sometime in the near future.

Now the franchise is going back to the beginning, rebooting itself on-screen in the upcoming "Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City." Writer/director Johannes Roberts promised IGN this new entry will take "Resident Evil" back to its creepy, lo-fi roots: dark hallways, jump scares, and maybe even some unstoppable killers bursting through the walls. Here's what we know so far.  

When will Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City be released?

Good news, survival-horror fans — "Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City" is lurking just around the corner! (That is good news, right?)

The film is currently scheduled to be released on November 24, 2021. That's a few months later than originally planned, the victim of release date musical chairs played by studios due to the pandemic. Variety reported in March that the film was being pushed back from its original release date of September 3 after Marvel and Disney's "Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings" landed there.

The new date will pit "Welcome to Raccoon City" up against Ridley Scott's fashion thriller "House of Gucci" and Disney's magical realist animated fantasy "Encanto," per The New York Times. But that also puts it well clear of October's traditional influx of horror fare, leaving that particular lane empty for "Resident Evil," unless "Ghostbusters: Afterlife," out the week before, has a lot more scares than the mini Marshmallow Men we've already seen.

Who is in the cast of Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City?

"Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City" will see a host of new faces taking on some of the classic characters from the game and film series.

First and foremost will be actress Kaya Scodelario taking on the role of series heroine Claire Redfield. Scodelario is best-known for her work on the U.K. television show "Skins," as well as the 2011 adaptation of "Wuthering Heights," "The Maze Runner" and its sequel, and "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales."

Where Claire goes, her brother Chris cannot be far behind. The older Redfield sibling will be played by Robbie Amell, who appeared in films "The DUFF" and "The Babysitter," as well as TV shows like "The Tomorrow People," "Upload," and "The Flash," where he played Firestorm. Hannah John-Kamen, best known as Ghost in "Ant-Man and the Wasp," will play Chris' partner Jill Valentine. Tom Hopper of "Black Sails," "Game of Thrones," and "Umbrella Academy" fame will play series villain Albert Wesker.

Rounding out the cast are Donal Logue, Neal McDonough, Lily Gao, and Avan Jogia, whose casting as Leon Kennedy proved controversial to some fans.

What is the plot of Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City?

As fans might guess from the cast of characters, it seems the new film will draw mostly from the first two games in the franchise, "Resident Evil" and "Resident Evil 2." An IGN report indicates that its locations will primarily be the Spencer Mansion featured in the first game and the Raccoon City Police Department from the second. The film is also reportedly set in the year 1998, the year "Resident Evil 2" was released for Playstation. William Birkin and Ada Wong (respectively played by McDonough and Gao) were also prominently featured in the second game.

The official Sony Pictures Releasing logline focuses mostly on its setting, reading, "Once the booming home of pharmaceutical giant Umbrella Corporation, Raccoon City is now a dying Midwestern town. The company's exodus left the city a wasteland...with great evil brewing below the surface. When that evil is unleashed, the townspeople are forever...changed...and a small group of survivors must work together to uncover the truth behind Umbrella and make it through the night."

But while we may lack in details about the exact plot and how closely or not it might follow those of the games, we do know what the film is setting out to do with its tone. "This was all about returning to the games and creating a movie that was much more a horror movie than the sort of sci-fi action of the previous films," Johannes Roberts told IGN. "Nothing in this town feels hi-tech. It feels dilapidated." Sounds just like 1998. How terrifying.