You may remember the mysterious appearance on Instagram some concept art by Neill Blomkamp for something very… Alien. Of course, alien is a concept not unfamiliar to Blomkamp whose breakthrough film was 2009’s District 9, but tackling one of the biggest sci-fi franchises of the last 40 years seems a little bit outside the norm. How can Blomkamp, who seems to have the rare privilege to make big-budget high-concept *original* films, throw himself into a movie series that’s more often than not the subject of such stringent studio interference? But it’s all legit. Blomkamp has admitted it now in a new interview, and more than that, he says that the only thing that’s holding up any real progress on making it a reality is he, him and himself.
To recap, Blomkamp posted a mess o’ Alien concept art to Instagram last month that showed, amongst other things, a re-teaming of Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) and Hicks (Michael Biehn), Ripley in some kind of xenomorph suit, and the alien ship from the first film (and it’s follow-up “prequel” Prometheus) in some kind of hanger. When the art appeared, no one knew what they were looking at – a movie, a game, a flight of fancy – but according to Blomkamp during an interview with Uproxx, he’s quite serious about getting his hands on Alien and making a movie.
“Basically, what happened was, when Chappie got heavily into post-production, I could take my foot off the gas a bit,” he explained. “I was thinking about what I wanted to do next and I’ve been wanting to make an Alien film for like years and years.”
Chappie is Blomkamp’s new film about a
killer robot driving instructor that goes back in time for some reason robot that learns how to think and feel in a dystopian future where machines police humans. The film co-stars Weaver who, according to Blomkamp, was his primary inspiration for putting the Alien bee in his bonet again.
“Speaking to Sigourney Weaver, when we were doing Chappie, she set off a bunch of thoughts in my head — I had come up with an idea that didn’t have Sigourney, it was a different idea,” he said. “But I spent all of the shooting time with her, it was like, holy shit, that could actually be really interesting. When I came back to Vancouver, I had an entire year to work on Chappie. And when I wasn’t needed in the edit, I could think about Alien. So, I basically developed an entire movie and I did all of this artwork as well.”
That’s great, but you don’t go crazy and make a ton of art work for a movie you have no chance of making (I guess). What’s the hold up with getting this thing into production?
“Me. I’m the problem,” Blomkamp said. “Fox, they would make it. Like, tomorrow. They would make it.”
Really? Twentieth Century Fox? Of course they would be crazy not to recruit someone as talented as Blomkomp to inject some new life into Alien, especially since Prometheus failed to deliver anything but bitterness and vitriol (despite occasional talk of a sequel still being developed). Of course, having Sir Ridley Scott didn’t stop Prometheus from disappointing, but I think by now we all agree that it was Damon Lindeloff‘s fault.
But will Fox give Blomkamp the keys to Alien? It’s at least possible. Blomkamp is excited despite his hesitation, and fans would love to see this franchise kick @$$ again, plus Fox has been making smart decisions in regards to its franchises lately if you consider the improvements made to the X-Men and Planet of the Apes series over the last couple of years. Blomkamp and Alien seems like a no-brainer, and as the sudden rise of Deadpool proves, fan support and excitement still has its place in the consideration to greenlight projects. We’ll see…
Chappie opens in theaters everywhere March 6.