Will We See Alien 5?
Now that Fox has all but given up on Scott's ambitious storytelling plans, it leaves a perfect Alien 5-shaped gap in the market for someone else to take the reins. There is a good reason why people by-and-large can't decide whether it prefers Alien or Aliens, but after the ethereal prequels something riffing on Cameron's noisy and bloodthirsty movie will be just the ticket. We've been told the project is dead, but a host of development hell escapees - think Deadpool - show how that doesn't mean never. If there's a desire for a new but different Alien, there are a lot worse options than a project that's already had a good amount of conceptualization done.
However, there is one major problem. Why would the wholesome Disney - who have just bought Alien along with a host of other franchises in their purchase of Fox - craft a movie about murderous acid-spitters? The House of Mouse is best-known for its family-oriented output; it's hard to imagine xenomorphs getting their own ride at Disneyland or kids asking for a stuffed queen on their way through the gift shop. Admittedly, a Blomkamp movie could help Disney break the mold in both directions, but does the studio really want to? Ultimately, bringing Alien to cinemas under the Disney umbrella is one hell of a risk to take, and with the franchise's recent box office takings, it might be a gamble too far - at least in the short term.
Why Blomkamp Can Save Alien
But, risk or no, this would be the right thing to do. Everything known about Blomkamp's project suggested something diametrically opposed to Scott's prequels, which would hopefully mean something exciting that at worst that breaks through the malaise. There may be many franchises brought back from the brink of extinction to a less than impressive reception (Scream, Saw, and Indiana Jones), but there have also been some runaway successes; a hunger for good Alien is there.
The potential is perhaps best shown by another major sci-fi series about to come back in a big way after some particularly rocky times. James Cameron's Terminator 6 isn't out yet, so we can't use it as a complete guideline, but the overwhelming reaction to his and Linda Hamilton's return says a lot about how to get fans back on board with a reboot, chiefly a strong connection to its origins. The same could definitely be said of Alien; the return of Ripley would be a major draw for the series and give a sense of organic importance to the project.
Perhaps the biggest tick in the Alien 5 box though is that the whole framework is already there. Blomkamp may have only released some of the concept art, but he had a 25-page treatment that got the project seriously moving. His passion evidently remains, and it's hard to think the fans who first made his artwork such an event will have lost theirs either.