Sir Ridley Scott’s 1979 space epic Alien pioneered the elements of horror and tension that most sci-fi films of that time simply didn’t contain. It was the film that gave birth to cinematic icon Ellen Ripley, and eventually a string of sequels that consisted of James Cameron’s action-adventure Aliens, David Fincher’s directorial debut with Alien 3, and eventually Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s Alien Resurrection. The latter of these instalments seemed uninspiring in tone and often felt as though they recycled elements that made the first two films so inspiring and iconic. Due to this, for over a decade there has been much speculation as whether or not there will be a fifth film and whether Scott or Cameron would ever return to a franchise that has left so many questions unanswered since its original. It is now clear however, that soon all that was unresolved beforehand will be revealed in Scott’s latest trip in to outer space, Prometheus, the not-so-direct prequel; that from the looks of the trailer, hints at going as far back within its very own fictional mythology, in order to embark on new discoveries that will move even further away from the original franchise itself?
Ten years in the development hell…
Although by next week Prometheus will be released around the country for all of us to be amazed by, its seems as though it has come a long way from its initial film concept. Back in 2002, both Sir Ridley Scott and James Cameron had expressed great interest in making another installment, with the idea that Ellen Ripley would return; however, after the monstrosity that was Alien vs Predator, both Hollywood giants left the project as they believed the crossover killed both the Alien and Predator franchises. It was not until 2009 that Scott picked up the franchise once again, with plans for a two-part direct prequel in the works that focused on enmeshing both human and alien history, that was slated to begin production in 2011. However, after much deliberation on 20th Century Fox and Scott’s part, the script was re-written, and with a very different concept altogether that distanced itself from the original Alien franchise. Due to this, in January 2011 it was publicized that the new film would be titled Prometheus, breaking away from the typical cues from primary tale, and exploring new origins within the same universe.
“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.” – Sir Ridley Scott on Prometheus.
And Sir Ridley Scott is not wrong, with the official trailer that was released in March 2012 that generated more than positive reviews among fans, Prometheus gives the impression that it will contain obvious segments that compliment its previous franchise; as certain antagonists such as the infamous “space jockey” that made its brief but unforgettable appearance in Alien, along with the illusive alien eggs and its overall outlook and design. It is evident that the film will run parallel to the Alien films, but will essentially proceed the events of the original film, with it revolving around something entirely different, although taking place in the same universe.
Being one of the most anticipated films of this Summer, it was essential that the marketing for Prometheus would be just as high-end yet still stylistically dark as the film itself. Over the past few months, many teasers and viral videos have been released online to whet fans appetites. Two in particular caused quite the stir, one of which is a clip that consists of a speech by a young Peter Wehland (founder of the infamous company in the Alien films), played by Guy Pearce, voicing his vision of the future; the other was an advertisement of the new “David” android, played by Michael Fassbender in the film, which later answered the question of the film’s status as the Alien prequel. As a result, the viral marketing strategy generated more interest in Prometheus than when the first official trailer was released many months before.
Meet the crew of the Prometheus…
Among the cast of A-list actors such as Charlize Theron as a Wehland Agent, Guy Pearce as Mr Wehland himself and Idris Elba as captain of the Prometheus ship, rising stars Micheal Fassbender who plays android David, along with Noomi Repace and Logan Marshall-Green who play a duo of young scientists take centre-stage as the heart of the Prometheus crew. Its a smart move by Scott to have a range of relatively known and unknown actors as part of this cast, as the trailer proves that Prometheus‘ plot will be main focus of the film.
“Of course what I want to do is scare the living shit out of you ”- Sir Ridley Scott.
Ultimately, Prometheus gives the impression that it will not only be the return of the terror-filled Sci-Fi film, but also the return of Sir Ridley Scott’s creative direction within a franchise that has needed his expertise for so long. By the time Prometheus hits theatres on 1st June, I am certain that this will have been proven entirely.