If you flashback to the early 00’s, there was still a sense of excitement and anticipation at the announcement of Ridley Scott working on a new project. This was a visionary director who’s expansive, ambitious and heart capturing visual eye had given the world of cinema such wonders as Alien and Blade Runner, masterpieces of the science-fiction genre. No longer; his last great film was in 2000, the swords and sandals epic Gladiator. During a long decade of quantity over quality, he cannot quite find that old spark and sees the excitement turn to pessimistic low expectations. 2009 offers a comeback; after years of talk, experimentation and musing, Scott’s longstanding desire to return to the world of his name-making colossus Alien has come to fruition.
Fox sanctions a project with Scott in the director’s chair and Jon Spaihts on board to write the screenplay. Rumors are rife about the film, and rejected drafts are already doing the rounds on internet chat rooms and gossip websites. They all seem to point to an existential direction for the series, as the infamous Alien Harvest script indicates. Beyond this, all that is known about the project is that it will be a prequel to Alien, only loosely associated with the franchise. The signs are good. Elsewhere, he is also working on a new Robin Hood movie. Worryingly, this film is seemingly in a constant state of flux regarding its plot, its screenplay and even its concept. In 2010, the same year that Robin Hood is released to a mediocre at best critical response, Lost show runner Damon Lindelof is drafted in to work on Spaihts’ script despite the fact that pre-production has purportedly been completed with filming set to commence within six months. It is horribly reminiscent of the stories that are coming out of the camp responsible for Hood, talk of constant rewrites and rethinks, resulting in the desecration of Ethan Reiff and Cyrus Voris’ original vision. Now the signs are worrying.