Five things you should know about Alien: Covenant
After Ridley Scott’s prequel
Prometheus in 2012 comes his follow up, Alien: Covenant. In the new flick, the crew of an interstellar colony ship inadvertently discovers a space paradise, and one thing leads to another until things go horribly wrong. Here’s a look at what else you should know about the movie, writes Bob Thompson.
It’s a monster mash up origins story
The latest picture is Scott’s third in the Alien series and tends to reference his 1979 original in tone and intention. That means the film has a high body count, lots of splatter, dimly lit kill spaces and a birthplace conceit.
Call it casting a wide net as a demographic menu
The ensemble of actors features a range of performers. Billy Crudup is aboard for the stage and screen folks. Danny McBride and James Franco attract the R-rated hipster doofus crowd. The new millennial maven Katherine Waterston does her Ripley impersonation with apologies to Sigourney Weaver. Back from Prometheus is Michael Fassbender who’s another synth-fellow with the capacity for sneaking roguish asides into conversation.
Stretching a cinematic reference to the beyond zone
McBride’s talkative Tennessee character wears a cowboy hat. It is supposed to recall Slim Pickins’ B-52 bomber pilot from the antiwar satire, Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.
The cast and crew filmed in a land down under with a little Québécois assistance
Alien: Covenant filmed for 74 days in Sydney, Australia, and on location in Milford Sound, New Zealand. Some of the movie ship was constructed on Sydney sound stages with the rest filled in with digital effects. Three special effects companies, including Framestore from Montreal, handled the task. The Quebec effects shop recently worked on Guardians of the Galaxy
Vol. 2 and will do some upcoming high-profile films, including Blade Runner 2049.
The potential take for the latest Alien
While Prometheus managed an OK opening weekend near US$51 million, Alien: Covenant is expected to hit around $40 million, and fall short of the Prometheus global total of $403.4 million.
Katherine Waterston in Alien: Covenant.