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For some reason, the sci-fi genre has always resonated with movie audiences. In movies new and old, the idea of something greater than ourselves has fascinated moviegoers, leading to franchises like Star Wars being passed down from generation to generation. And with Disney now in charge of the property, we should expect new installments like The Last Jedi to resonate with younger audiences. Alien creator Ridley Scott seems to think that his horror franchise could and should have a similar pop culture status. And while it will be a hard sell for young fans and their parents, Scott seems to think the Alien world is rich enough that is could lend itself to just as many iconic stories as the Star Wars franchise. He said,
I think they have to. There's no reason why Alien should now not be on the same level for fans as Star Trek and Star Wars. So I think the next step as to where we go is, do we sustain the Alien (series) with the evolution of the beast or do we reinvent something else? I think you need to have an evolution on this famous beast because he's the best monster ever, really.
Well, this is a bold claim by Ridley Scott. And while he's got a point, there are a few factors that are working against the Alien franchise ever becoming quite as iconic and beloved as Star Wars or Star Trek.
Ridley Scott's comments to the Toronto Sun seem to point out that Alien originally had the potential to be as popular as Star Wars. The first two Alien films are truly iconic, serving both terror and heart in spades. Furthermore, Sigourney Weaver's Ellen Ripley is one of the most badass female characters of all time. On paper, it seems enough to get all the fanboys out there practically salivating with excitement for each new sequel.
But the Alien franchise is largely one about horror, rather than space adventures and scoundrels like Star Wars. It's hard to make chest bursters and horrifying death sequences family friendly, the way that the action in Star Wars and Star Trek are wont to do. As such, it's basically an adult-only situation, and probably not one that is going to be passed down through the generations.
Additionally, the Alien movies at this point have followed a large group who are massacred by the titular Xenomorphs. As such, there aren't characters who the fans know and love that they can catch up with during each sequel. Star Wars and Star Trek all have ensemble casts that have made their way across various media, and are therefore easier for audiences to connect to. Luke, Leia, and Han have been everyone's favorite heroes for decades, where Ellen Ripley only appeared in the first few Alien movies.
Alien: Covenant was the most recent film in the franchise, which got mixed reviews and underperformed at the domestic box office. It's currently unclear if and when the franchise will continue, but CinemaBlend will be sure to update you as details become public. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your trips to the movies this year.