Director Neill Blomkamp (District 9, Elysium) has been publicly flirting with the Alien franchise for months now. What was once thought to be simple fan fiction, may now actually become the next Alien movie in the franchise.
A few months ago Blomkamp began leaking concept art that he was working on as a “creative exercise.” He is an admitted Alien fan and he got the opportunity to work with the star of the franchise, Sigourney Weaver, in his upcoming film, Chappie. Clearly getting the chance to work with Weaver inspired the science fiction visionary. A few weeks ago Blomkamp spoke about his concept art and his interest in making the movie:
“There was a reason. I wanted to make that film. I still may make that film. [Laughs] It may happen. But I did it on my own time. Like when Chappie was winding down in post and I had available time, I started to work on it. It was also from talking to Sigourney [Weaver] during the making of this. I mean, I asked her about Alien all the time. Alien and Aliens are my favorite films. So I genuinely wanted to make that film, I came up with the story, I came up with way more art than I put out and I never officially spoke to Fox about it, but Fox wanted to make it. So, I kind of touched on it and I didn’t know what to do, and I didn’t know if I was just gonna go leave directing for a whole bunch of time and then I was like, ‘I might as well put some art out.’ But I may make it. I don’t know. That’s where it stands.”
Not only has Blomkamp shown the ability to create flawless visual effects for his films, he is also the writer of his movies as well. He has shown the inclination to combine high-concept science fiction, that is layered with pertinent social commentary. While his films have featured extra-terrestrials and spaceships, they have also been strong allegorical warnings about apartheid and the inequality of the classes. We have gotten numerous Alien movies, however we have rarely gotten any subtext from the series, perhaps since Ripley saved the orphaned Newt in Aliens.
Things became real for fans of Alien today when Blomkamp announced via Instagram that the Alien project was real:
Blomkamp is no stranger to science fiction. All of his films have been in that genre, however if he is looking to bring Alien back to its roots, he is going to have to make it a horror film. In District 9, there were moments and segments that had elements of a horror, it will be interesting to watch Blomkamp push himself in that area.
#ripley #hicks A photo posted by Brownsnout (@neillblomkamp) on
While Weaver was not a part of the announcement, expect to hear a confirmation of her participation in the movie as soon as the contract is negotiated. Last week she was asked if she would be interested in rejoining the franchise and she responded:
“It’s not that so much as that we just left it at such a creepy place, sort of stranded above Earth. I was quite happy to move onto other things and I didn’t want to go to Earth. I didn’t want to manufacture a sequel and I felt like we were starting to do that. If something happens from this, it would be very organic and very original, and because of that, it would make me want to do it. If it was someone as talented as Neill, I’d certainly listen.”
Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection were not horrible films, they simply could not come close to the quality craftsmanship of the first two installments. Fox decided to change gears and begin their Alien vs Predator movies, which plummeted the value of the franchise to a point where it was almost untouchable. It seems that Weaver wants the opportunity to right the sails of the franchise and from the sounds of it, she is confident that Blomkamp is the talent to get the job done.
Wtf? A photo posted by Brownsnout (@neillblomkamp) on
Original Alien director Ripley Scott, came back in 2012 with the prequel to the franchise, Prometheus. The movie has polarized viewers since its release. It was marketed as an Alien prequel, due to it having much of the iconography of his original film. However Scott chose to tell a different story that many were not expecting to see. There is a sequel to Prometheus on the way and Scott will be producing both his and Blomkamp’s movies. Expect to see Prometheus 2 released first, since a release in 2016 has already been targeted.
This is a very exciting time and it is the first time in several decades when fans should actually be excited at the prospects of a new Alien movie. It’s hard to predict what Blomkamp has up his sleeve, but I can guarantee a mech suit is involved, based on his filmography and the iconic scene from Aliens. We will be keeping a very close eye on this film as it moves through development.
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