As reported recently, Ridley Scott's Prometheus sequel, now titled Alien: Paradise Lost, has taken precedent over Neill Blomkamp's intriguing Alien ideas, entering production first at the beginning of next year. While we were initially led to believe that Blomkamp's own Alien would likely follow a year later, that now, sadly, turns out not to be the case. Blomkamp has tweeted that his Alien project is currently in a "holding" pattern, possibly indefinitely, and that he's moving on to other things.
If you somehow missed it, Blomkamp's Alien arrived in a flurry of activity at the beginning of this year, just as Chappie was hitting cinemas. Blomkamp released some just-for-fun Alien designs online, featuring both Sigourney Weaver's Ripley and Michael Biehn's Corporal Hicks. The internet went crazy, and Fox got excited and put the project in development.
Conspicuously though, while there were some lovely pictures, there never seemed to actually be a screenplay or even a coherent plan, and Blomkamp never seemed clear on whether his film would somehow take place in between Aliens and Alien 3, or ignore the second half of the original series completely. So while the web may shake its fist in Scott's direction, yowling that they'd rather have a proper new Alien than any more bloody Prometheus, it's possible that there's more to the Alien 5 abandonment than just Sir Ridders getting his own way.
"Abandonment" might be too strong a word anyway, since Blomkamp's Twitter line is still that his own Alien is on hold pending Alien: Paradise Lost, rather than a complete shut-down. He may be heading for pastures new for the time being, but he might be back at some point.
Or we might be reporting on a new Kickstarter campaign for a documentary about the famous unmade Alien movie in a few years time... Watch this space.