Viral pandemic sci-fi movie could be a little too close to home for some

Releasing a science fiction film about a viral pandemic as audiences find themselves in the midst of a Covid-19 outbreak feels like a risky endeavour.

Lindsey Morgan as Captain Rose Corley. Picture: PA Photo/ Vertical Entertainment.
Lindsey Morgan as Captain Rose Corley. Picture: PA Photo/ Vertical Entertainment.

On the one hand, an opportunity for escapism is a welcome distraction. On the other, the subject matter could see the film hitting a little too close to home for some.

Directed by Liam O’Donnell, it’s precisely the situation new sci-fi offering Skylin3s finds itself in.

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The third film as part of the Skyline franchise, the timing of Skylin3s’ release comes a decade on from the initial instalment, which captured the imaginations of audiences worldwide.

“That was just a really strange coincidence,” notes actress Lindsey Morgan, 30, of the timing of the release.

“I spoke to someone the other day and they said, ‘there really is not a better time than right now for this movie to come out’ and I was like ‘I don’t know if that’s a good thing?!’.

“It was super strange but that’s kind of the cool thing that sci-fi lets us do.

“Sci-fi can show us this fantastic mirror of what the future could be like or how different societies can govern themselves and what we’re capable of as a human species.”

Continuing the tale of Captain Rose Corley, played by Morgan, best known for her role as Raven Reyes in The 100, the story takes place at a time when alien hybrids live side-by-side with humans on earth following an invasion.

Having subsequently ensured that the aliens’ biological makeup has been altered in order for both species to co-exist peacefully, the virus causes the aliens to revert back to their previous human hunting form.

“I think sometimes we can watch superhero movies and think, ‘of course they’re going to win; of course Superman is going to defeat them!’”, says Morgan.

“But with Rose, it really is a gamble; we just don’t know. She has all this responsibility and pressure thrown on her and at the end of the day she really is 17 – people forget that.”

The story sees Rose, who is herself a super-powered hybrid, lead a team of elite soldiers to an alien planet named Cobalt1 in order to save what’s left of humanity.

A mission fraught with danger, O’Donnell’s vision of Rose as a strong, female character that takes centre stage is but one of the reasons Morgan was initially drawn to the project.

“I love that we’re seeing more women in these very heroic positions but I also love that it’s not a masculine take on a woman being in a position of power,” says Morgan.

“The big thing about Rose, for me, is that she’s still a girl.

“She’s going to be a bit more emotional – and in my opinion, more complex, and having vulnerability, and wearing her heart on her sleeve.”

As you’d expect from any self-respecting sci-fi offering, Skylin3s is filled with perilous moments and CGI effects aplenty from blazon-eyed aliens to interactive 3D holograms.

Skylin3s will be released in select UK cinemas and available digitally on demand from December 18