The only battle bigger than the one between humans and xenomorphs is the one between the films about humans and xenomorphs. Both Ridley Scott and Neill Blomkamp were working on their own films set in the Alien world. At this point it looks like Blomkamp’s movie is essentially dead until Scott is done making Prometheus 2 however, actor Michael Biehn just gave us some insight about what that movie was going to be about and it turns out it was going to focus on a familiar character, but not Ripley.
In a recent interview, Biehn says that Blomkamp’s film would bring back two characters familiar to fans of James Cameron’s Aliens, his own Corporal Hicks and a grown-up Newt. From what Biehn tells Icons Of Fright, it sounds like the film would put Newt in the lead, allowing her to potentially take over the franchise from Sigourney Weaver.
They’re planning on bringing me and Newt back and at this point Newt will be around twenty-seven years old. I know that every actress in Hollywood is going to want to play this one, it’s really a passing of the torch between Sigourney and this younger actress who would play Newt. It would keep the franchise alive and the studios would make money, because that’s what the bottom line is now: money. That’s why you end up seeing 'Terminator' 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 10 and 'The Fast And Furious' 7, 8, 9, and 10.
While we know that Neill Blomkamp’s Alien movie would have taken the entire franchise into account, it has been described very much as a direct follow up to Aliens with a more action oriented focus to the story. If using the film to relaunch the franchise is the plan, and as Michael Biehn says, why wouldn’t it be, using Newt to do so certainly makes the most sense. Sigourney Weaver probably isn’t interested in continuing a long-running action franchise at this point, though we’d guess she could still do it, and bringing in a familiar character makes more sense then introducing a new one out of the blue.
Unfortunately, at this point we have no idea when, or even if, we’ll ever see this version of the film. Blomkamp has said publicly that he’s moving on to other things since Fox has put his film on hold so that it doesn’t run over Alien: Covenant, the sequel to Prometheus. With the director focusing on other things, he could get busy elsewhere and even if we do see another film in the original part of the franchise, it could end up being very different.
As Michael Biehn says studios are looking for franchises and Alien is certainly a strong brand, so it’s unlikely we’ve heard the last of this. We just don’t know when we’ll actually see movement here for the foreseeable future.