Ridley Scott's return to the world of Alien begins proper in 2016 when he starts shooting Alien: Covenant. In the last few months, Scott has let slip a steady stream of intel on the film, that's to pick up directly after the events of Prometheus and venture to a new planet where the mysteries surrounding the xenomorph will be revealed. "So in other words, why was this space jockey there and why did he have an Alien inside him? And those questions will be answered," Scott told reporters at a recent conference.
The more interesting factor in all of this is why did Scott decide to come back to the retrofuturistic universe? After swearing off sequels for decades he's returning to two of his most successful franchises. OK, so he's producing not directing Blade Runner 2, but Alien? Three back-to-back sequels is quite an ambitious goal.
His reason for returning? "Star Wars will be a juggernaut. Why do you think I’m doing sequels?" You've got to admit, his candour is refreshing, if a little disconcerting when considered in context. Neill Blomkamp's Alien sequel, which based on the concept art looked like every fan's dream come true, was backburnered for Scott's efforts.
Meanwhile, he went on to reveal that the movie will shoot on location for some "monumental forest and monumental rock [sets]" while "the rest will be in the studio with fairly formidable CGI". Those indoor shoots will take place at Sydney's Fox Studios, where Michael Fassbender is said to be arriving in March for the 16-week shoot. And here's where things get interesting.
According to those present at the Australian press conferences, Fassbender will be doing double duty playing two different versions of David the android, in what's described as a headlining role. Having a couple of androids with no doubt questionable motives, will inevitably cause strife for the human travelers on the Covenant ship. Noomi Rapace's Elizabeth Shaw character will only be a part of that human contingent in a limited capacity, Scott also confirmed. Sounds like there's a monstrous death on the cards for that hopeful scientist.
Alien: Covenant is scheduled to open in the US on October 6, 2017, with a UK release date yet to be confirmed.