While our immediate focus has largely been on Ridley’s Scott’s upcoming Prometheus sequel/Alien prequel, Alien: Covenant, there is still another Alien movie in development. That is Neill Blomkamp’s planned fifth entry into the original Alien canon that sees us move forward to the time of Sigourney’s Weaver’s Ellen Ripley and focuses on events post Aliens – while apparently totally pretending that Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection never happened.
It’s all intriguing, but why they wanted to go and tell a story that essentially dismisses the existing canon is a strange one. It also begs the question of what Blomkamp in can bring to the party that is different that will make us want to watch his Alien film over the rest? The story of Ripley and her battles with the Xenomorph’s is already quite detailed and developed, this new film will need to introduce something different to the character to give us a reason for wanting to revisit her story.
Well, we now have a little bit more of an idea of what to expect thanks to an interview with Weaver where she spoke to Entertainment Weekly about the film, what’s different about it and how it will advance the character of Ripley further:
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.
So, it seems that the story being told is to give a proper ending for the character of Ripley. Barring the AVP movies, Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection are the least liked films of the original franchise, but in particular the ending, or non-ending of sorts that it gave the character of Ripley in Alien: Resurrection was not well received by many fans. It seems this movie is trying to change that and give Weaver’s character the conclusion she deserves. What that ending is, I guess we can only speculate about for now.
“It’s just as if, you know, the path forks and one direction goes off to three and four and another direction goes off to Neill’s movie. It’s just more, I would say, following Jim Cameron’s story about these characters, rather than just ending up in this sort of monastery in space, which was [Alien3 screenwriter] Vincent Ward’s idea and Fox elected to go in that direction. I think Fincher was fine with that. Each director kind of wanted to create a whole new set of circumstances. In this case, it picks up, it follows directly the circumstances of Jim Cameron’s Aliens.”
I like the idea of the film taking us more along the lines of James Cameron’s version of the film. And while, I prefer the first Alien film to its sequel, Cameron’s version was still a thrill and featured the stronger Ripley that we have come to now know and expect in Alien films. I’m looking forward to see how Blomkamp and screenwriter Vincent Ward look to continue on from that initial vision. What we do know, is that it won’t just be Weaver returning, as the film will also have Michael Biehn return as Cpl. Dwayne Hicks.
However, all that being said – the movie is still not in development yet, with both Blomkamp and Weaver still currently working on other projects for the time being.
“I hope it won’t be a few (years). I hope it’ll be a couple. But we’ll see.”
So, I guess we shouldn’t be holding our breaths on this one coming out any time soon. Right now, Fox only wants one Alien film to be getting all the attention and that is the aforementioned Alien: Covenant which is currently in development and due for an Oct 6, 2017 release date.
To tide you over until then though, below is some concept art for the planned 5th Alien film.
Last Updated: July 14, 2016