X is one of 2022's most shocking movies to date and features some of the year's most inventive horror moments. West's ambitious movie focuses on a group of young filmmakers, including Mia Goth's Maxine, who shoot an adult film on a rural Texan farm, much to the disdain of the land's two elderly owners. One of the owners, Pearl, also played by Mia Goth, is jealous of Maxine's youthful looks and brutally kills the members of her group who she resents.
Ti West's X is set in 1979, and the movie is purposely made to look as if it was shot in that time period using a more grainy style of film. With Pearl being an origin story of X's villain, it will naturally be set before X, and Pearl's first trailer reveals that it will take place during the First World War. The prequel will see Pearl in her twenties, placing the older version of Pearl in X at around 80 years old, which makes sense given how frail she appears.
The official plot synopsis for Pearl reveals that the exact year it will be set is 1918. The World War I backdrop won't play a significant part in Pearl's killer backstory, although the Pearl trailer suggests that she is stuck on the farm, the same one from X, because the rest of her family are away fighting, and so she is responsible for caring for her elderly relatives. The only other wartime reference in the trailer for Pearl is a man dressed in military uniform who is shockingly blown to pieces on Pearl's farm.
Pearl will focus on how an aspiring young actress turns into a murderer. The trailer for Pearl has already revealed clear parallels to X and explains Pearl's motivations for her massacre of Maxine's group in 1979. Pearl wants to kill her elderly relatives so that she can pursue her dream of becoming a movie star, but on her journey, she stumbles into the adult film industry, just like Maxine in X. Pearl will inevitably survive the prequel as she becomes X’s main killer 60 years later, and the time gap between Pearl and X will likely lend itself to a third movie that explains what she got up to in between Ti West's two movies.