With Alien: Covenant, the sequel to Prometheus, ready to hit theaters in May, director Ridley Scott is already talking about making another. And not just a trilogy, he’s in this for the long haul. The Alien franchise already has (officially) seven films, including Prometheus, so Covenant would be the eighth film. In a recent interview with the Sydney Morning Herald, Ridley declared that the script for the next Alien film was already written and that they were planning on starting to shoot in 2018.
“You’ve got to assume to a certain extent success and from that you’d better be ready,” Scott said. “You don’t want a two-year gap. So I’ll be ready to go again next year.” The series was planned as a four film series anyways, not a trilogy, so there was never a plan to stop after number three. Scott later added “If you really want a franchise, I can keep cranking it for another six. I’m not going to close it down again. No way.”
Can the world really handle another six Alien films? Or maybe the better question seems to be, can Scott handle it? He’s already 79!
This new Alien series certainly has faith in its films. Prometheus was released to conflicting reviews, though it did manage to make back over twice its budget. These films obviously have an audience and built in fan base. Their plan echoes that of Star Wars, a franchise which has also taken the route of building a series from start to finish. Star Wars is without a doubt the more successful, and shooting for Episode 9 begins this summer. Has Ridley Scott stumbled across the next big Hollywood plot to make money: series planning?
At one point, director Neill Blomkamp (District 9) had plans to direct an Alien movie, which would have been a sequel to Aliens, and ignore the events of Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection. The film would have given Ripley an ending, and the script gained praise from both Sigourney Weaver and James Cameron, of all people.
“It’s a great story and it’s satisfying to me to give this woman an ending… The script itself has so much in it that’s so original, but also really satisfies the, I would say, the primal needs of the aliens. It’s a tribute to all of the great work that the other directors have done, in a way, but goes in a completely new direction. I hope we’ll do it.”
With this new Alien Universe, doubt has been cast on whether or not Blomkamp’s film will actually happen. It doesn’t look like it, it seems Scott is content to take things in a different direction.
Regardless of how you feel about the Alien films (they’re not for everyone), they’re coming. So get ready.
Here’s the synopsis of Alien: Covenant:
The crew of a colony ship discover an uncharted paradise, with a threat beyond their imagination, and must attempt a harrowing escape.
The film stars Katherine Waterston, Michael Fassbender, Noomi Rapace, James Franco, Danny Mcbride, Guy Pierce, Billy Crudup, Callie Hernandez, and Carmen Ejogo. Covenant is set to be released on May 19, 2017.