The Alien franchise has been looking to the past to tell its latest tales in this sci-fi universe. Prometheus kicked off the prequel series in 2012, and Alien: Covenant will continue the story next year. After beginning principal photography at the beginning of April, Covenant finished filming today, and to celebrate the accomplishment, they posted an unusual photo.
This new behind-the-scenes photo, posted on the Alien Anthology social media accounts, features director Ridley Scott with Inherent Vice actress Katherine Waterston, who is playing new protagonist Daniels. This is our first up-close look at Waterston in Alien: Covenant, and while it's not the clearest presentation of her in character, she's definitely giving off an Ellen Ripley vibe in the photo, from the hairstyle to the clothes. The picture in itself doesn't revel any juicy plot details, and it just a fun way to commemorate finishing shooting. However, Waterston's resemblance to Sigourney Weaver's iconic character may be more than just a deliberate coincidence to harken back to the series' original hero.
Warning: possible spoilers for Alien: Covenant are ahead!
Last month, it was rumored that Katherine Waterston's Daniels is Ellen Ripley's mother. That information has yet to be confirmed or denied, and while it would be an intriguing plot twist, given the time frame between these prequel movies and the original Alien, it's too soon to tell whether it's a reality. Either way, from what we've seen in reports and set photos so far, it sounds like Daniels will be another cool protagonist introduced to the Alien lore. Now that shooting is completed, Alien: Covenant will be spending the next year in post-production, though some of that time may also be spent on reshoots, if necessary.
Set several years after the events of Prometheus, Alien: Covenant will follow the the colony ship Covenant flying to a remote world on the far side of the galaxy. When they discover what looks like a paradise, they find an environment far more dangerous on the surface that is only home to "David," the synthetic man who was the only survivor of the "doomed Prometheus expedition." Besides Katherine Waterston's Daniels, the movie's new players include Danny McBride as the ship's pilot, Billy Crudup, Demián Bichir, Jussie Smollett, Amy Seimetz, Carmen Ejogo and more. Along with Michael Fassbender's David, Noomi Rapace will reprise Dr. Elizabeth Shaw, but it's still unclear just how much she'll be involved, whether it's appearing in person or only being seen in a flashback. According to Ridley Scott, Covenant will be followed by two more movies that lead into the original Alien movie.
Alien: Covenant will be released in theaters on August 4, 2017.