Ridley Scott says his new prequel to his seminal 1979 space-horror film Alien is definitely happening, and he's going to talk to venerable designer H.R. Giger about some new creature designs. And he drops some plot details. Spoilers ahead...
According to Scott, he's looking at the fourth draft of the movie's script now, and the revision process is simply a matter of making the characters stronger and punching up the film's three acts. The goal is to have a script that he can put in front of the cameras — and he assures MTV that "we're actually making the film. There's no question about it — we're going to make the film." He hopes it'll be in theaters by 2011, or at the latest 2012.
And he explains that the prequel takes place about 30 years before the first movie, in 2085. Weyland-Yutani doesn't exist yet, but Weyland, pre-merger, does. And it's very much in the terraforming business. Adds Scott:
It's fundamentally about going out to find out 'Who the hell was that Space Jockey?' The guy who was sitting in the chair in the alien vehicle - there was a giant fellow sitting in a seat on what looked to be either a piece of technology or an astronomer's chair. Remember that? And our man [Tom Skerritt as Captain Dallas] climbs up and says "There's been an explosion in his chest from the inside out - what was that?" I'm basically explaining who that Space Jockey - we call him the Space Jockey - I'm explaining who the space jockeys were.
He adds that this new movie won't feature Ripley at all, because she's not born yet. But the main character will be a woman. And he plans to talk to H.R. Giger, and "maybe we'll come up with something completely different."
Scott has always refused to make a sequel (or in this case a prequel) to any of his films, but he changed his mind about going back to Alien because of the way the other film-makers have "squeezed the franchise dry." The whole interview is well worth reading. [MTV via Den Of Geek]