After being teased for a few years, filmmaker Neill Blomkamp revealed last month that his proposed direct sequel to James Cameron’s “Aliens” is dead.
There was excitement as well as concern about the project between the time it was first discussed by the “District 9” filmmaker and the time of its collapse. Many have written about their disappointment or elation of the project’s failure to launch, but the director himself has kept fairly quiet about it.
In a recent interview with Funhaus (via Bloody Disgusting), Blomkamp spoke some more about the project and revealed that he originally wanted to feature an entirely new character in the leading role rather than see the return of Sigourney Weaver’s Ellen Ripley:
“I met Sigourney on Chappie and I had a different idea for an Alien film I wanted to make. So I had this idea for a story set in the world of those two first films that was not a continuation of James Cameron’s.
It was just in the world of it and it had a totally different character that was the lead character. Because my assumption was that Sigourney would just never make another one. I told her about it on Chappie and she was like ‘No, no, no! I actually would make another one because I felt like Ripley’s story didn’t end correctly.'”
Weaver then came on board and Blomkamp retooled it as a direct sequel to “Aliens” and one that would give both Ripley and Hicks a proper send off:
“So I went back to Vancouver and, while I was editing Chappie, I started to think about what I would do with Sigourney as basically a sequel to James Cameron’s film. I spent about a year working on it with only Sigourney knowing and I hired one really awesome concept artist. We put together essentially a script and all the artwork and that’s what I went to 20th Century Fox with. They seemed really into it and Ridley [Scott] came on as producer, and then it just unraveled.”
Blomkamp has previously said that he understands why Scott didn’t want him working on the film. Scott himself has said the project just wasn’t anywhere near far along enough to go forward with and instead turned studio priorities towards his “Prometheus” follow-up “Alien Covenant” which opened this year to divided critical reaction and nearly break even box-office.
The comments come as Blomkamp’s next Oats Studio short film, ‘Zygote,’ is slated to go online shortly on Youtube and Steam later today.