Her character, Selene, will appear in the next sequel, that is now announced for 2012 release, to 'pass the torch' to one of her two daughters.
Following wide speculation about whether or not Kate Beckinsale will return to "Underworld 4", latest report confirms that she will indeed reprise her role as Selene in the fourth installment. However, her appearance is likely to be a short one as Bloody Disgusting states she will "pass the torch" to one of her daughters.
In addition to Beckinsale's smaller role, the news from the fourth "Underworld" film also reveals that Screen Gems has moved back the release date of the movie. Initially planned to arrive in the U.S. on September 23, 2011, the film is now targeted for January 20, 2012 release. This is following the route of "Underworld: Evolution" and "Underworld: Rise of the Lycans" which were debuted in January too.
Little is known about "Underworld 4" except that it has been rumored to be the first of a new trilogy. Kate Beckinsale herself, back in 2009, said that she was not sure if she wants to be seen in the "rubber" costume anymore but added, "I think if they came up with an amazing script I wouldn't be adverse to it."
Meanwhile, scribe John Hlavin previously teased, "It will satisfy old fans and excite new audiences, meaning that we don't want to redo the first three movies, so steps are being taken to honor what fans have loved but at the same time introduce fresh elements." No director is attached to the forthcoming project yet.
Beckinsale's Selene is the main character in "Underworld" and "Underworld: Evolution". Though she did not shoot a new footage for the third film, her scene from the first movie was used to bookend "Underworld: Rise of the Lycans" and Beckinsale provided her voiceover in the beginning and the end of the movie.