After terrifying audiences on the big screen, the Alien franchise is headed to television. Fargo‘s Noah Hawley will serve as the creator of the Alien series, which will be set on Earth in the not-too-distant future. “By blending both the timeless horror of the first ‘Alien’ film with the non-stop action of the second, it’s going to be a scary thrill ride that will blow people back in their seats,” reads the official description.
While speaking with Esquire, Noah Hawley provided an update on the Alien TV series. “It’s going great,” Hawley said. “It’s going slowly, unfortunately, given the scale of it. I’ve made a certain business out of reinvention. Alien is a fascinating story because it’s not just a monster movie; it’s about how we’re trapped between the primordial past and the artificial intelligence of our future, where both trying to kill us. It’s set on Earth of the future. At this moment, I describe that as Edison versus Westinghouse versus Tesla. Someone’s going to monopolize electricity. We just don’t know which one it is.” Noah Hawley went on to tease that the Alien TV series could deal with rival corporations; after all, there’s got to be more than Weyland-Yutani out there.
In the movies, we have this Weyland-Yutani Corporation, which is clearly also developing artificial intelligence—but what if there are other companies trying to look at immortality in a different way, with cyborg enhancements or transhuman downloads? Which of those technologies is going to win? It’s ultimately a classic science fiction question: does humanity deserve to survive? As Sigourney Weaver said in that second movie, “I don’t know which species is worse. At least they don’t fuck each other over for a percentage.” Even if the show was 60% of the best horror action on the planet, there’s still 40% where we have to ask, “What are we talking about it, beneath it all?” Thematically, it has to be interesting. It’s humbling to get to play with the iconography of this world.
Ridley Scott is on board the Alien series as an executive producer but has expressed doubt that it could ever be as good as the first movie. As far as the franchise returning to the big screen goes, after Disney acquired 20th Century Fox, they announced that they would “continue to create new stories” in the Alien franchise. It was later reported that Ridley Scott would be returning to direct another Alien prequel, but it may not have much of a connection to Prometheus or Alien: Covenant. The Alien TV series could debut on FX on Hulu in 2023.