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Ridley Scott wants to make two ‘Alien’ prequels

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HERO COMPLEX FILM FESTIVAL

Ridley Scott is going back to the future — and back to the horror.

Speaking at the Hero Complex Film Festival, the director got a rousing ovation when he told the crowd that the script is ready for a prequel to his 1979 deep-space masterpiece Alien.” “It’s written. I’m prepping it now.”

Earlier, in a quiet corner of the theater’s upstairs VIP room, Scott hinted that he might start filming in January and that this return to “Alien” might be a 3D affair. He also said that the setting would be about 30 years before the events depicted in the original film. That gives him, he said, the leeway to make a second prequel if the first goes well.

The film will key off a memorable but mysterious visual from the original “Alien” — the spooky scene where the crew of the Nostromo find a massive, long-dead being who fans of the film call the “space jockey.” Scott said he will delve into the history of that being, whose visage has not yet been seen — the slumped form seen in the original film was wearing a suit or exoskeleton of sorts, the filmmaker said.

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“No one ever asked that question: What’s the story there? I was always surprised that people didn’t ask that one. Now we’re going to answer that question. To me, a prequel is interesting, much more interesting than a sequel. They never asked me to do the sequels.”

Later, on stage, Scott echoed some of those comments. “I sat thinking about the franchise which died on the road way back and lying in the dust and I thought, ‘What I should do is go back. . .’ ”

“There was a massive giant lying in a chair and the chair was either a form of engine or some piece of technology . . . and we’re going to go back [and ask]: ‘Who the hell is the space jockey?’ ”

Scott added: “What we’re going to try to do is squeeze in two prequels. . . if you explain who he was and where did he come from. . . then you may want to find out where they came from, you might want to go to him and go to the place where his people come from.”

— Geoff Boucher

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