Director Ridley Scott confirmed this week that he is returning to the “Alien” franchise for a new prequel installment. Scott announced his involvement in the upcoming film in an interview with Variety saying, “They sent me a script and I read it. I loved it.” Scott continued, “I was in Hollywood within 32 hours.”
The script for the project still needs work, and it will be a while before we learn any casting information, but fans of the franchise should be happy to hear that the director is returning for his third prequel project. “Alien” celebrates its 40th anniversary this year.
Scott directed the first “Alien” film in 1979. The original story featured Sigourney Weaver, and the thriller opened at the top of the box office with a $3.5M limited release. A nationwide release followed a few weeks later, and the film opened with a $5.3M debut. The original “Alien” made over $104.9M for the studio and was an instant hit with fans of the genre. The success of the film prompted the studio to make “Aliens,” which was written and directed by James Cameron, and Sigourney Weaver returned to reprise her role from the original story. The sequel launched in 1986 and it made over $10M on its debut weekend. The second film topped the original’s worldwide gross, bringing in $131M for FOX. David Fincher joined the franchise to direct “Aliens 3” in 1992, which brought back franchise star Sigourney Weaver. The film opened with $19M and went on to make $159.8M globally. Jean-Pierre Jeunet directed “Alien Resurrection” in 1997, this time parring Sigourney Weaver with Winona Ryder and Ron Perlman. The film had a smaller $16.4M opening, but it went on to make over $161.3M worldwide.
The studio broke from tradition and made “Alien vs. Predator” in 2004 with Paul W.S. Anderson, this time leaving out Sigourney Weaver. The switch paid off, and the film made $38.2M on opening weekend and “Alien vs. Predator” finished its theatrical run with $172.5M. Hoping to repeat the success of the first spinoff, FOX brought on Colin and Greg Strause to make “Aliens vs. Predator – Requiem” in 2007, but the film only made $10M on its opening weekend. That installment only made $41M domestically but was saved by international markets, which bumped the total to $128M globally. The shaky launch of “Aliens vs. Predator – Requiem” put the franchise on ice until 2012, when Ridley Scott returned to make the film “Prometheus.” The movie made $51M on opening weekend and went on to make over $403M worldwide. Scott returned to make “Alien Covenant” in 2017, which made $36M on its debut before topping out at $240M globally.
Fans will have to wait a few more months before rumors start flying in on the cast, timeline, and location of the new installment. Until then, there are eight Alien movies to stream on different platforms, and countless games, novels, and comics to dive into to help pass the time.
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