‘The Signal’ is an Indie science fiction thriller directed and co-written by William Eubank, starring Brenton Thwaites and Laurence Fishburne. The slow-burning thriller follows three MIT students as they get lured into being abducted by aliens. Waking up in a sterile facility, they are told by men in hazmat suits that they have undergone contact with an extraterrestrial being and need to be kept for observation. The movie keeps the audience as confused as the lead character, Nic (Thwaites), who tries to comprehend what is happening to him and his friends and eventually resolves to escape the facility.
With many unexpected turns and an unreliable protagonist, through whose perspective the story unfolds, ‘The Signal’ is a roller coaster ride that has polarized viewers. Whilst fans of the movie marvel at the scale of the film and its many twists, critics have pointed to its labyrinthine plot and somewhat inconsistent style of storytelling. The one point of consensus about the movie is that there is a lot that still needs to be explained. So, if you’re wondering whether a sequel to ‘The Signal’ can be expected, we might have some answers for you!
The Signal Sequel Release Date
‘The Signal’ first premiered on January 20, 2014, at the Sundance Film Festival and later had a limited release in theatres across the US on June 13, 2014. Since its release, there have been countless mentions of a possible sequel, but no official announcement confirming it has been made by either the studio or the filmmakers as of now.
The plot holds on to its secrets till the very end. It puts the audience in the same shoes as the lead characters as they try to get their bearings. Nic, who the movie follows, wakes up in a sterile facility and is repeatedly interrogated by Damon (played by a cold faced Laurence Fishburne) without getting any answers as to where he is or if his friends, Jonah (Beau Knapp) and Haley (Olivia Cooke), are still alive. Later on, he finds that all three of them have been implanted with alien technology. In his case, his legs have been amputated and fitted with alien prosthetics that are extremely powerful and allow him to run at very high speeds.
Eventually escaping from the facility, Damon, and his men, Nic crashes through a barrier only to see a dark sky full of stars through a window and finally realizes that he has been aboard an alien spaceship this whole time. Unfortunately, it is at this point that the film ends, leaving the audience wondering about the fates of Nic and Haley (Jonah is killed during the escape) and what exactly the motivations of the aliens are.
In an interview just after the release of ‘The Signal,’ director William Eubank himself stated that he liked how open the ending of the movie is and that it gave him space to continue the story if he felt like it. He also mentioned that his brother and co-writer of ‘The Signal,’ Carlyle Eubank, had come up with a fantastic idea for a sequel. However, he remains non-committal about extending this movie franchise but did express more interest in the “technology vs. emotion” theme of the movie.
Eubank is also a big fan of subtlety and leading to answers in a roundabout way, something that he has expressed as well as demonstrated in later movies like ‘Underwater.’ For ‘The Signal,’ he was especially excited to surprise fans with twists and misdirection as well as include references to Area 51. One of the best examples of this is the prominent number sequence that adds up to 51 and leads the protagonists as well as the audience to believe that the story is taking place in Area 51 on earth.
The big reveal at the end of the movie shows that this is false, and the story is taking place in space aboard an alien spaceship that is marked with the same number sequence. It is quite likely that because such a significant piece of the story’s puzzle gets solved at the end, filmmakers prefer not to continue the story as the audience now knows too much. The big answer has been provided, and all the other questions remain seemingly irrelevant.
As a sci-fi thriller, ‘The Signal’ stands firmly in the “mind-bending” category. Whereas a lot of sci-fi movies with grand story arcs depend on sequels to finish telling their stories, some films proudly flaunt their disruptive narratives and leave it up to the viewers to fill in the missing gaps and come to their own conclusions. (‘2001: A Space Odyssey‘. Need we say more?) We think this is the case with the latter, and therefore, it is highly unlikely that ‘The Signal’ sequel will be made.
Read More: The Signal Ending, Explained