Just when it looked like Ridley Scott’s so-called Alien prequel was finally on the verge of becoming a reality, along comes an unexpected update implying that the project is essentially no more. There is still a movie in the works alright… but it looks like it will have no official ties to the Alien franchise whatsoever. Over the past couple of years, the project has slowly solidified from a vague possibility to a movie in active development at Fox with a screenplay being rewritten by Lost show runner Damon Lindelof. Back in October we also learned that The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo star Noomi Rapace was the frontrunner to play the film’s lead role. This week we have confirmation that Rapace will indeed be the star of the film; however, it is now going under the mysterious title Prometheus instead.
According to Deadline New York, Ridley Scott has signed on to direct Prometheus with a projected worldwide release date of March 9th, 2012. The story is still a sci-fi horror hybrid with its roots in the Alien mythology, but they have since decided to turn it into an entirely original story. Ridley Scott explains:
“While Alien was indeed the jumping off point for this project, out of the creative process evolved a new, grand mythology and universe in which this original story takes place. The keen fan will recognize strands of Alien’s DNA, so to speak, but the ideas tackled in this film are unique, large and provocative. I couldn’t be more pleased to have found the singular tale I’d been searching for, and finally return to this genre that’s so close to my heart.”
There is another lead female role in the film, and rumour has it that Angelina Jolie and Charlize Theron are both strong possibilities. Either way, I think this is pretty awesome news. Although Alien fans have been excited to see Ridley Scott return to the franchise, there has been a lot of apprehension about what a prequel might do to the series continuity (not that some of the existing sequels haven’t already muddied the water somewhat). Now we get the best of both worlds: an Alien-esque sci-fi movie that has no risk of ruining a beloved franchise. Kudos to Fox for taking a risk and allowing them to do something original that is not tied to an existing brand. Are you happy with this news about Prometheus, or are you disappointed that we won’t get a new Alien movie?