We knew that things weren’t looking good for Neill Blomkamp’s Alien 5, or whatever it was going to be called. There was a time when things looked very promising indeed, as Sigourney Weaver discussed how excited she was to return to the role of Ripley, and Michael Biehn was going to return as Hicks. But then everything got put on hold for Alien: Covenant and Blomkamp said that chances of it getting made were “slim.”
Well, Ridley Scott has appeared to put another nail in the coffin of Ripley’s return. Speaking to AlloCine (via io9), the question of Blomkamp’s film was raised and the filmmaker did not sound optimistic.
“There was never a script,” he said. “It was an idea which was evolved on, I think, a ten-page pitch. And I was meant to be a producer on that, and it didn’t evolve. Fox decided that they didn’t want to do it. so that was it. I think I had already done Prometheus and I was already planning Covenant, so dunno.”
When the interview followed up with “That’s never going to happen?” Scott replied “I don’t think, so no.”
For a brief period, it looked like Alien 5 was a big priority for Fox, but it did sort of seem to come about by accident. Blomkamp was working on some concept art for fun having worked with Weaver on Chappie, and things kind of snowballed from there. At that point it wasn’t clear what was going on with the Prometheus sequel, but when Alien: Covenant got rolling, Blomkamp’s film was put on hold.
So what’s the reason behind Fox deciding not to go ahead with it? Well, it could be because of Scott’s commitment to make several more Alien movies (the number of which remains slightly unclear, but he’s definitely working on a follow-up to Covenant already), or it could be because of Chappie‘s disappointing box-office performance (which is unfair, because that film is seriously underrated). Or maybe it was because the script wasn’t that great, although Weaver was definitely excited. Who knows?
We have to say, we’re very disappointed. As excited as we are for Alien: Covenant to hit in a couple of weeks, the idea that Weaver could have had one more turn as Ellen Ripley and that someone decided not to move forward with it…That stings a little.
Alien: Covenant is released on 12 May. Keep up with the latest genre news with the new issue of SciFiNow.