The outlook of the Alien films continues to grow more confusing, with Ridley Scott recently revealing that the potential sequel to Alien: Covenant would avoid the xenomorph, the creature audiences hoped they'd get to see more of. When speaking with the Empire Film Podcast, the director confirmed a potential sequel would focus more on Michael Fassbender's A.I. character.
“I think the evolution of the Alien himself is nearly over,” Scott explained. “But what I was trying to do was transcend and move to another story, which would be taken over by A.I.’s. The world that the AI might create as a leader if he finds himself on a new planet. We have actually quite a big layout for the next one.”
Despite being one of the most recognizable franchises in the world of science fiction, the series has struggled to find its footing in recent years.
The final film in the original series' narrative, Alien: Resurrection, seemingly brought Ellen Ripley's (Sigourney Weaver) story to an end. The property then went the crossover route with two Alien vs. Predator films, neither of which resonated with audiences.
Scott, who directed the original installment, returned to the series for the prequel Prometheus, which explored themes of creation and the origin of many species. While it was touted as the prequel to Alien, the film was devoid of the xenomorph creatures made popular in the original films.
Due to fans' disappointment of the creature's absence, the Alien: Covenant filmmaker and promotional materials leaned more heavily into the film's more horrifying subject matter. Sadly, the film still only barely incorporated the creature, exploring the themes of Prometheus even further with Fassbender's character.
Scott might have an idea of the direction he wants the next film to take, but the underwhelming critical and financial reception of Covenant has seemingly thrown the whole franchise into jeopardy. The brand continues to be as popular as ever, but Scott has been struggling to find the right balance of continuing his vision while also giving audiences what they hope to see in the series.