District 9 director Neill Blomkamp has shared his theories on why Alien 5 was scrapped, and it is all thanks to his science fiction movie – Chappie. During an interview with the Guardian, the director discussed his belief that the creator of the beloved Alien Franchise, Ridley Scott, stopped the extra-terrestrial sequel in its tracks after seeing Chappie’s critical backlash.
In 2015, 20th Century Studios greenlit Blomkamp’s sequel, which would have acted as a new third installment, following on from James Cameron’s Aliens. However, much to sci-fi fans dismay, the project was thrown out the same year. Looking at the tight timeline of that year, these production decisions could have been a coincidence, but Blomkamp’s Chappie suspicions seem to hold some merit too. The initial announcement for the alien movie happened in February, Blomkamp’s sentient robot film Chappie was released in March. Then in October, it was revealed that Alien 5 was no longer on the cards.
“It’s possible that Ridley watched Chappie, and he was like, this guy can’t do Alien so let’s just go ahead and move on,” Blomkamp said. Set in Johannesburg, Chappie tells a story about a self-aware South African robot that gangsters take in. The movie currently holds 32% on Rotten Tomatoes, and was criticised mainly due to its clunky storytelling.
While it is unknown if the 2015 AI or Scott actually played a hand in 20th Century Studios’ decision to cancel Alien 5, Blomkamp certainly believes that that is the case.
“What doesn’t make sense is that I feel like it’s what the audience wanted, so it’s strange because Fox [20th Century Studios] would never really turn down money,” the director explained. “I felt like [for] audiences who loved Aliens, there was an opportunity to do one more film with Sigourney in a way that may have satiated what people were looking for and what I think I was looking for.”
Despite Alien 5 being in the can, Blomkamp is keeping busy. Recently the director has released the horror movie Demonic, and is busy working on District 10 – District 9’s highly anticipated sequel, which will be looking towards American history to inspire its story.
The Alien franchise is still going strong, and fans can look forward to an Alien TV series, which Ridley Scott will produce. For more shows that are out of this world, check out our list of the best sci-fi series.