Acid Reign? ‘Alien’ heads to tv and comics…

Aliens may not be in the multiplexes for the foreseeable future, but that doesn't mean the famous monsters are lying low...

It seems you can’t keep a good xenomorph down – even if you try. 2021 will likely bring two more projects set in the universe of acid-blooded monster made famous in the 1979 film by Ridley Scott.

The recent films, Prometheus and Covenant met with a decidedly cold reaction from many sf fans, concentrating as they did more on the theology approach to investigating the origins of the species… and earlier transfusional efforts such as the AvP films of the Noughties that made it to the screen were even less popular (even if the concept was promising). But the idea of more movies is always mooted (its been too profitable a franchise to completely die, even with so many missteps)  and there’s talk of Scott continuing in that regard post-pandemic.

But, in the meantime,  two new formats may be on the cards.

Marvel Comics has announced a new comics series from writer Phillip Kennedy Johnson (Empyre: Captain America) which is set to debut in March 2021. Simply called Alien, the series will feature new characters and stories within the established universe., in particular a Weyland-Yutani mercenary named Gabriel Cruz who encounters a xenomorph and must find a way to save his child in the process.The art will come from  Salvador Larroca (Doctor Doom). The cover art for the first issue has been released and should please fans with its classic look.

“Just as a reader and fan, I was as excited as anyone when I heard the franchise was coming to Marvel, and when they asked me to write the launch, I was floored. I’ve been training my whole life for this gig without knowing it. Ever since seeing Ridley Scott’s Alien at way too young an age, I’ve been obsessed with the xenomorph, the single most iconic representation of terror on film,” Johnson said in a statement.

Comics are great, but what about the screen-version? It might be a while before we see another Alien at the multiplex, but there are plans for a television series.  Though perhaps overlooked in the midst of all the Marvel and Star Wars announcements at the Disney investor event last week, the day did bring confirmation of a rumour that the creatures were heading to cable. FX bigwig John Landgraf  said the cable network is in the process of fast-tracking such a series. Fargo and Legion creator Noah Hawley will have the creator/executive-producer mantle  with Ridley Scott likely to have an EP title as well. It is believed that the project’s central story will bring the extra-terrestrial menace to Earth itself.

The deals have largely come about because of Disney‘s acquisition of Twentieth Century Fox which gave them access to the franchise in its many forms and allowing new projects to get the greenlight.  It is believed that similar deals may eventually come into play for the Predator franchise.