Ridley Scott Wants to Use a New Movie to Answer an Obvious Question Raised by Alien

The derelict ship from Alien.
The derelict ship from Alien.
Image: 20th Century Fox

Ridley Scott seems like there’s somewhere in his brain that is always thinking about Alien. He’s never quite been able to leave the franchise behind, and after returning with Prometheus and Alien: Covenant, it does feel like he’s camped out to stay. And while Covenant didn’t do well enough to demand an immediate followup, and the Disney-Fox merger complicated plans for a new movie, rest assured, he’s still thinking.


Talking to the LA Times recently, Scott revealed one of those ideas, which is to answer a question begged by the initial film.

“What I always thought when I was making the first one [was] why would a creature like this be made and why was it traveling in what I always thought was a kind of war-craft, which was carrying a cargo of these eggs. What was the purpose of the vehicle and what was the purpose of the eggs? That’s the thing to question – who, why, and for what purpose is the next idea, I think,” Scott said.

That is the question, huh? Who made this ship, and where was it going? By the time the crew of the Nostromo reaches the ship, that question is far beyond the point, with survival quickly moving up to the top of the list of concerns. But it’s a lingering mystery, and Prometheus didn’t exactly provide clear answers about those sorts of concrete concerns.

The other big question, though, is: is this question worth answering? The mystery adds a lot to the mystique of that movie’s horror. Sometimes, it’s best to just not know. When a xenomorph has you in its sights, what other information do you really need?

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io9 Weekend Editor. Videogame writer at other places. Queer nerd girl.


Matthew Catania

Wasn’t that what Prometheus was supposed to answer? Why’d he bother making it if it didn’t address any of that?

After seeing Alien, I did not have any questions about the origins of the Space Jockey or xenomorphs. Insisting the xenomorphs were bio-engineered weapons instead of a parasitic species that evolved naturally makes them less fascinating.