Landing in cinemas soon is ‘Alien: Covenant,’ director Ridley Scott’s second prequel (following on from 2012’s ‘Prometheus’) to his 1979 sci-fi horror classic ‘Alien.’ The seasoned director seems very optimistic about the project, so much so that he hopes to make as many as six more films in the series – quite ambitious, given the prolific filmmaker is already 79 years old.
However, with Scott apparently back for the long haul, this has left fans of the series wondering what has become of Neill Blomkamp’s proposed ‘Alien 5,’ which would have rewritten the series chronology – erasing the divisive ‘Alien3′ and ‘Alien Resurrection’ – and served as a direct follow-up to James Cameron’s beloved first sequel ‘Aliens,’ bringing back Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley and Michael Biehn’s Hicks in the process.
Alas, according to Scott himself, it doesn’t look likely that Blomkamp’s film will ever be made after all; on top of which, Scott suggests the project was never as fully developed as fans might have been led to believe.
In an interview with French site Allocine (translations in somewhat broken English via AVP Galaxy), the British filmmaker declares, “I think [Blomkamp’s film] will never see the light… There was never a scenario, just an idea that evolved into a pitch of ten pages. I had to participate as a producer but it did not go any further because [20th Century] Fox decided that [they] did not want to do it. I had already done ‘Prometheus’ and worked on ‘Covenant.’”
Readers with good memories may recall that Blomkamp got the word out on his ‘Alien 5’ plans by sharing concept art for the project online, remarking at the time that Fox had already passed on the project. However, it had been thought that the online buzz generated by this artwork was enough to get the film back in development – much as had been the case when the 2011 test footage for ‘Deadpool’ was leaked.
However, Scott’s claim that ‘Alien 5’ never got beyond a pitch does not correlate with remarks made by Sigourney Weaver at San Diego Comic Con 2016, where the actress stated that Blomkamp had written a complete script, which she said was “incredible” and “gives the fans everything they’re looking for, plus innovates in a lot of ways.”
Has ‘Alien: Covenant’ and Scott’s further plans for his ‘Alien’ prequel timeline killed off Blomkamp’s sequel for good? Time will tell – but for now, it looks like Weaver’s recent scene with Stephen Colbert is about as close to an ‘Alien 5’ as we’re going to get.
‘Alien: Covenant’ opens in UK cinemas on 11 May.