The film The Mummy takes place in Egypt, 1290 BC. The high priest Imhotep is involved in an affair with Anck-su-Namun, the mistress of Pharaoh Seti I. When the pharaoh discovers the affair, Imhotep and Anck-su-Namun assassinate the monarch. Seti's guards arrive at the scene to arrest the culprits, but Imhotep is forced to flee while Anck-su-Namun commits suicide. After Anck-su-Namun's burial, Imhotep and his priests steal her corpse and travel to Hamunaptra, the City of the Dead, where they begin the resurrection ceremony. However, they are intercepted by Seti's guards before the ritual can be completed, and Anck-su-Namun's soul is sent back to the Underworld.
The priests of Imhotep are mummified alive; Imhotep is sentenced to immortal agony, sentenced to suffer the Hom Dai curse, and is buried alive with flesh-eating beetles. He is buried under high security, sealed in a sarcophagus at the foot of a statue of the Egyptian god Anubis, and kept under close surveillance by warriors known as the Medjai; for all mankind would be doomed if he could rise again.