Update 2021 (November 13) – Happy Birthday David

Alright that’s a bit misleading, but a few week back Maitland Eaves asked if I knew when David was activated. It’s something I’ve thought about, but never properly tried to work out. So here we are.

The release cycle for David android is anywhere between 3 and 10 years – average of 6.8. 

David 1 – 2025

David 2 – 2028 3 years

David 3 – 2035 7 years

David 4 – 2042 7 years

David 5 – 2052 8 years

David 6 – 2062 10 years

David 7 – 2068 6 years

It starts with a shorter cycle early on, then gets longer – presumably as synthetics become more advanced – but then shortens again between David 6 and 7.  It doesn’t really help us in terms of ascertaining when David 8 might have come online.  It’s not unreasonable to assume that Weyland was working on, or even finished the David 8 prototype we see at the start of Alien Covenant, by the time 7 was released.  So perhaps 2069.  This would make Weyland 79 years old.  He only appears to be in his fifties in the film (Guy Pearce was 49 when Covenant was being made).  On the other hand Weyland is obsessed with immortality and invented hypersleep.  Determining his exact age based solely on appearance is almost impossible.  Age ultimately catches up with though – or would’ve had the Engineer used his creations creation to undo aforementioned creation.

None of the available scripts feature the opening scene with Weyland and David, so we can’t get any hints there.  Neither does the novelisation offer any detail on timeframe.

The promo video ‘Happy Birthday David’ that came out in the lead up to Prometheus also offers no clues.  A passage in the Japanese translation of the Prometheus novelisation – thanks to Clara Carija – covers much the same ground as the ‘Happy Birthday David’ video (though he’s being asked questions by Vickers in the book) and mentions a date of 2089.  This would fit nicely with Prometheus, but not Covenant.

So taking all of that into account, I’m going with April 7 2069 as a creation date for the David we see in the films, April 7 being Michael Fassbender’s birthday.