It would be a major understatement to say that Prometheus left a big door wide open. The film (which was (at least originally) supposed to serve as something of prequel to to Ridley Scott’s sci-fi/horror classic, Alien) instead inspired more questions than answers; questions that people around the world have attempted to explain ever since the film’s release.
In that sense it was unsurprising when the possibility of a Prometheus sequel was first brought up, as a sizable gap between the quasi-prequel and the first Alien film still exists. The very existence of that aforementioned gap (which could have easily been closed with a few revisions to the Prometheus story) almost necessecitates another chapter of the tale; which is exactly what we will be getting in a few years.
THR did a rundown of how the summer 2012 tentpoles for the major movie studios did at the box office, and what the future of those franchises is (if any exists). For 20th Century Fox, the summer 2012 slate was relatively empty, and a lot of hopes rested on Prometheus being a big performer. As it stands, Ridley Scott’s return to the sci-fi genre earned $300 million worldwide on a $130 million budget – which is (not great, but) good enough for Fox to move ahead with a sequel.
Fox President of Production Emma Watts – who has relaunched several key franchises with the successes of X-Men: First Class and Rise of the Planet of the Apes – had the following to say about the future of the Prometheus brand:
“Ridley is incredibly excited about the movie, but we have to get it right. We can’t rush it,”
Earlier this summer, during an interview, Ridley Scott himself assured our own Roth Cornet that he indeed has a firm grasp on the story, and where it would go next. WARNING: THE FOLLOWING RESPONSE CONTAINS PROMETHEUS SPOILERS!
From that interview:
Screen Rant: My question is how far ahead have you thought? Or have you talked to Damon (Lindelof) about where the possibility of a sequel will go? Have you already opened those doors in terms of you already know where these answers are and it’s just a matter of making it? Or are you sort of like ‘We will think about that a little bit assuming the movie is a hit. Let’s talk later.’
Ridley Scott: “It’s a bit of each. You do a bit of each and I’ve opened the doors. I know where it’s going. I know that to keep him alive is essential and to keep her alive is essential and to go where they came from, not where I came from, is essential. That’s a pretty open door and then rather than going to that, I don’t see landing in a place that looks like paradise, that’s not how it’s going to be. There is a plan, yeah.”
SR: How important is it for you to be directly involved as a director in that?
RS: “Totally. I develop everything. I do. I learned that a long time ago. It’s never going to land on your desk, you have to come up with what you want to do with the story and I think sometimes it can take two or three years…
Admittedly, hearing both Watts and Scott drop the caveat that a sequel ‘can’t be rushed’ is a bit frustrating. Many viewers signed on to see Prometheus in the expectation that they would see the story of how the dreaded Alien Xenomorphs came to be, and how those fearsome creatures landed on that faithful planet where Ellen Ripley and the crew of the Nostromo first encountered them; instead, we got a much larger mythology that only tangentially referenced the actual kernel of knowledge so many were hungry for. Hearing that there “needs” to be an extended delay to actually get the full meal will likely be frustrating to many fans beyond myself…
…Of course, what may raise some of those same fans’ hopes is an addition to the THR report, which states that while surviving Prometheus members David (Michael Fassbender) and Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) are both locked in for a sequel, Damon Lindelof (who co-wrote the script with newcomer Jon Spaihts) is not as certain to return. Apparently, Fox wants the sequel out in either the 2014 or 2015 summer season – a deadline Lindelof may not be able to make, thanks to his other commitments (Star Trek 2 being a big one).
After the controversy that sprang up from the endings to both Lost and Prometheus – projects Lindelof had a big hand in crafting – there is a very jaded, but very vocal, demographic of cinephiles who believe the popular young writer to be something of a ‘two-act pony’ (as in, a writer who is unable to craft a satisfying third act conclusion to his often-mysterious screen stories). Given the amount of contradictions and holes that pepper the plot of Prometheus, maybe some new blood wouldn’t be a bad idea?
Look for the Prometheus Sequel sometime in either 2014 or 2015; check back to Screen Rant regularly for any updates that come to light.