Greetings, Earthlings! Visitors from outer space are coming — to the cineplex, anyway. This weekend already has brought us "I Am Number Four," a sci-fi actioner with Alex Pettyfer as a teenager who discovers he has otherworldly powers, such as being overly photogenic.
There are a slew of other alien-invasion movies on the way. Here's a look at them:
'I Am Number Four'
Release date: Opened Friday.
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Premise: A teen relocates to a small Ohio town, posing as an average high school student. He's actually from an alien race whose remaining members are being hunted and killed — in numerical order — by other aliens.
The big mystery: Why all these races look like supermodels. Aren't aliens supposed to be gooey and green?
The buzz: Produced by Michael Bay, who likes lots of explosions (as in his "Transformers" series), and directed by D.J. Caruso ("Eagle Eye"), this has lots of dazzling special effects and is heavy on the action at a time when there aren't a lot of action films out. It could make its relatively unknown leads Pettyfer and Dianna Agron (from TV's "Glee") bona fide stars.
'Battle: Los Angeles'
Release date: March 11
Premise: Aliens invade Tinseltown — and yes, they're the kind from outer space.
The big mystery: Why America always has to be the one to save the world.
The buzz: This could be a gamble in more ways than one. It looks like "Independence Day" mixed with "District 9" — hardly original. And it's directed by Jonathan Liebesman, whose previous big-budget outing was "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning" — hardly reassuring.
Release date: March 18
Premise: Two British comic-book geeks travel across the United States and encounter a "cool" alien outside Area 51.
The big mystery: Since this was written by the usually creative Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Seth Rogen — why does it have such a bland title?
The buzz: Fans of the zombie flick "Shaun of the Dead" have been giddily anticipating this reunion of Pegg and Frost. And this is directed by Greg Mottola, who helmed the hilariously raunchy "Superbad" and the surprisingly tender "Adventureland." Those factors scream target audience — but is it a big enough target?
'Cowboys and Aliens'
Release date: July 29
Premise: Based on a graphic novel. An extraterrestrial species lands in Arizona in 1873 intending to enslave humanity — but cowboys and native Apache warriors have other plans.
The big mystery: Whether its Super Bowl spots raised interest or killed it.
The buzz: It certainly packs star power, with Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig and Sam Rockwell in the cast, and it's directed by Jon Favreau, who knows a thing or two about comic book adaptations after guiding "Iron Man" and its sequel to success. But will its Western/sci-fi mashup work?
'The Darkest Hour'
Release date: Aug. 5
Premise: In Russia, a group of kids struggle to survive after an alien invasion.
The big mystery: Hasn't Russia been through enough?
The buzz: It has talented young stars (Emile Hirsch, Olivia Thirlby and Max Minghella), this is director Chris Gorak's follow-up to his low-tech sci-fi Sundance hit "Right at Your Door," and it's produced by sci-fi/action guru Timur Bekmambetov, so this has strong, smart potential — and at least it's not America getting pummeled for a change.
Release date: Oct. 14
Premise: At an Antarctica research site, a scientist and his graduate student discover an alien craft.
The big mystery: Why aliens seem to crash-land only in snow.
The buzz: This is apparently a prequel to — not a remake of — John Carpenter's 1982 "The Thing," even though it's titled the same. Guess "The Thing: The Beginning" or "The Thing: Origins" didn't win anyone over.