The “Alien” franchise has been something of an odd duck. Both Ridley Scott’s 1979 original and James Cameron’s 1986 sequel are considered more than just sci-fi classics, they’re frankly two of the greatest films of all time. Each subsequent film though hasn’t come close to that standard.
David Fincher’s troubled “Alien 3” was a big disappointment at the time of release, but even with its troubled history remains a superior work to what came after be it Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s inventive but deeply flawed “Alien Resurrection,” Scott’s messy prequel/spin-off “Prometheus,” and the frankly best not spoken about “Alien vs. Predator” films
Ahead of Scott’s third try and the wheel with “Alien: Covenant” in May, Cameron spoke with Vulture about the franchise and was asked about his take on ‘Covenant’ and the series as a whole. Seems he’s not been a fan of the follow-ups to his and Scott’s original work:
“The franchise has kind of wandered all over the map. Ridley [Scott] did the first film, and he inspired an entire generation of filmmakers and science-fiction fans with that one movie.
There have been so many films that stylistically have derived from it, including my own Aliens, which was the legitimate sequel and, I think, the proper heir to his film. I sort of did it as a fanboy. I wanted to honor his film, but also say what I needed to say. After that, I don’t take any responsibility.
I don’t think it’s worked out terribly well. I think we’ve moved on beyond it. It’s like, okay, we’ve got it, we’ve got the whole Freudian biomechanoid meme. I’ve seen it in 100 horror films since.
I think both of those films stand at a certain point in time, as a reference point. But is there any validity to doing another one now? I don’t know. Maybe. Let’s see, jury’s out. Let’s see what Ridley comes up with.
Let me just add to that – and don’t cut this part off, please – I will stand in line for any Ridley Scott movie, even a not-so-great one, because he is such an artist, he’s such a filmmaker. I always learn from him. And what he does with going back to his own franchise would be fascinating.
“Alien: Covenant” opens May 19. Cameron serves as executive producer of “Atlantis Rising,” a new National Geographic documentary airing on January 29th which seeks answers about whether or not the storied lost city really existed.