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An Alien TV series was in the works... but was scrapped by Fox Studio Execs

An Alien TV series was in the works... but was scrapped by Fox Studio Execs

Scified2019-04-07 17:20:12https://www.scified.com/articles/an-alien-tv-series-was-the-works-was-scrapped-fox-studio-execs-42.jpg
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There has been a lot of talk about the development of an Alien TV series over the last few months and although the possibility of an Alien series beyond film is uncertain following the Disney / Fox merger, we do have information that confirms a mini series was in fact in development at one point... but it never entered production because studio executives at Fox, mainly Emma Watts, wanted the Alien franchise to remain exclusively a theatrical title and not branch out into television.

Deadline had the report initially, which revealed Emma Watts had fended off attempts made by Noah Hawley and FX to turn the Alien franchise into a miniseries. Hawley is previously responsible for such FX series like Legion and Fargo.

Sources said that in the recent past she fended off an attempt by Hawley and FX to take the Aliens franchise and turn it into a miniseries, and when Searchlight once wanted to do something with The Omen, she held fast because who wants to give up your franchises? She did that before the Disney deal, when it was a whole different ballgame.

We know Disney have plans to actively continue the Alien franchise following their acquisition of Fox, thanks to their recent public statements. Whether or not that includes an Alien miniseries, has yet to be seen.

What do you think? Should Alien remain strictly for film? Or should they branch it off into a series as well? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Thanks to daliens in the forums for the news!

If you're a fan of Alien / Prometheus and would like to discuss Alien: Covenant and its upcoming sequel with other like-minded fans, be sure to join in our Alien: Covenant forum! Ranked the #1 Prometheus forum back in 2012 and reigning as the web's top Alien: Covenant fan site, it's a great place to discuss the upcoming Prometheus sequels, dissect details from every trailer and engage with other fans just like you.

Written by ChrisPublished on 2019-04-07 17:20:12

About Alien: Covenant 2 / Alien Awakening

The state of the Alien: Covenant sequel continues to remain uncertain. Ridley Scott has mentioned previously that they have a story already in place and know exactly where the sequel to Covenant will go, however the recent acquisition of 20th Century Fox film properties by Disney have potentially put the rumored-to-be-titled Alien: Awakening on hold for the time being. As new details arise concerning Alien: Covenant 2 we will be your premiere source and you can find information on the Covenant sequel by visiting the About Alien: Awakening page here.

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19 Fan responses to An Alien TV series was in the works... but was scrapped by Fox Studio Execs

Resurgence

Apr-07-2019 5:32 PM

Good honestly it sounded like a bad idea anyway

Chris

Apr-07-2019 5:36 PM

Yeah, I was never a fan of adapting Alien to TV. It would denature a lot of the authenticity and mythology which made the films so great, imo.

RickT

Apr-07-2019 6:08 PM

I would prefer movies over a series.  I don't know when or what we'll receive for a movie but I'm hopeful.

daliens

Apr-07-2019 6:16 PM

There is a topic already on the Forum since March 22nd, but since here it has more visibility, thanks for sharing.

Chris

Apr-07-2019 6:26 PM

Thanks daliens! I'll add your link to the OP. I was late to the punch on this one with the other news.

dk

Apr-07-2019 6:29 PM

Too bad. There were lots of possibilities. Now we can wait another 4 or 5 years for another possibility of a teaser trailer. Some might be getting pension checks by then.

daliens

Apr-07-2019 6:38 PM

Unless the sequel to Alien: Covenant is already in the pipe line. Who knows that better than Stacey Snider and Emma Watts?

I Raptus

Apr-07-2019 11:58 PM

Honestly, Im far more interested in streaming/tv series than movies these days. Series give more content and opportunities for writers to invest in plot and character development ,rather than jammed into a 2-3 hour film. Look what happened with Covenant. It feels awkward because it got squeezed to a pulp to fit all the content in. There are negatives to series such as risk of cancellation, budget restraints for storytelling etc. but the positives of a more engaging storytelling far outweigh the negatives

   

BigDave

Apr-07-2019 11:59 PM

I think expanding the Universe into a TV Series could work.

But it would have to be a Expanded Universe and so i think the Xenomorph or even related should be KEPT to the Movies.

The Problem is ANY kind of ALIEN TV Series would be expected to connect to ALIEN or the Xenomorph or maybe Ripley, so there is some Thread from the Franchise.  And so if it Carried the ALIEN Title then this would be expected by some Fans, and Certainly more Fans would expect it to contain something very ALIEN at least.

so you would have to think about a Different Name and Market it as being in the Universe but would-not cover anything connecting to Alien or the Xenomorph but then its getting Fans to see your TV Series and the ALIEN is a well known brand, so its a Catch 22...  you would have to have it about something that Fans would Recognize its connected to the Universe, but then also Market it as NOT connecting to ALIEN etc.

Something like Weyland: Odyssey could work on various levels, or Weyland Yutani:Odyssey but how many casual people would know of such a Name and Logo, if its marketed WELL then it may get people interested..  only Alien Franchise and Sci-Fi Fans may notice the connection.

Then some of them may be wandering how close this would connect to anything within the Alien Franchise... and for those who dont see the connection via that Weyland Name, then NO soon as you Market it as a TV Show Set in the ALIEN Universe then some people are going to be scratching their heads and thinking "how does this connect to those Alien Films?, Were is Ripley or the Xenomorph"

I Raptus

Apr-08-2019 12:35 AM

I like that idea Bigdave; a series set in the Alienverse but without the Xenomorph.

I like the sound of Weyland Odyssey! 

I guess it depends on what the focus/antagonistic force of the series would be.  

The Prometheus name might be another suggestion? With this name you would probably assume Engineers as a key focus, if that was your route.

Sevastopol: xxx

Hadleys Hope: xxx

Lets just please not use the name Colonial Marines....

Leto

Apr-08-2019 1:21 AM

Maybe I want. The series has more possibilities and substories. But I look at Alien Universe like Godzilla or James Bond. Franchise for the big screen.

BigDave

Apr-08-2019 2:12 AM

I think a Colonial Marines TV Series could work...

Just if Fans would accept that maybe it does-not have to be about Bug Hunts, well Xenomorphs!   The Colonial Marines have surely done more than just KILLING those Aliens and getting Killed in Return in ALIEN.

You have to look at other Reasons for such a Military Contingent, and remember the Xenomorph was just ANOTHER Bug Hunt... so they have been involved in tackling other Alien Pests.. that are Unrelated to Xenomorphs.

Rogue/Awol Synthetics have been shown in the Franchise, so the Colonial Marines could be shown to deal with such a Threat in another Episode.  

You could follow a Team of Colonial Marines from Training EP1-3 to then some Missions with various threats.. of the Synthetic Kind, Human Kind and Alien Pest Kind... even have a Episode showing some Down Time in-between Missions, where we could see what was all the Fuss about those Arcturian Poontang

The Final Episode could be to deal with something thats related from events of the ALIEN Franchise/Prequels.. be that Black Goo Related, or Xenomorph Egg Related.  This would be the Climax Episode or TWO

A Hadleys Hope TV Series i think would be limited, because its would Fans be interested in the Day to Day Life of the Colonist... they would have to be some Action, Thriller and Conspiracy.  I think it COULD work if its a Short Series.

So say 4 x 45 Minutes or 2 X 90 or 3 x Hour for example.. or maybe more but i think you would only need 4 hours to cover such a TV Series... which has to end with the First Outbreak of Xenomorphs.

I think a Prometheus Series would depend upon WHAT aspect to we follow from this? Events leading to the Mission, Events after the Loss of the Mission?

Engineers, but in the Past! This could get a bit Star Gate though!

We could consider a CAPRICA/BATTLE STAR GALACTICA

By that the Galaxy is Large... and can we assume that Earth is the only place where Humans are, in context to other Worlds the Engineers have Human Colonies and Interact.

So we could go to another Place in the Galaxy with Humans or very similar, and while yes to start with we can have them use a Alien/Ancient Dialect with Subtitles, then have them speaking English so we get the idea they dont speak English but its just for our Convenience.

You could explore in Flash Backs the Engineers reasons for Creation, and even indicate times they visited Earth, and maybe reasons we was abandoned?

Our Creation seemed to be something of importance and a lot of Effort, and it was indicated our Engineers are never just about Create Mankind and Create Xenomorphs.  We all remember the Space Jesus... well that the Engineers had tried to send a Emissary to put us on track and we killed him and THAT was the LAST STRAW..

In the Bible GOD has had his fair share of Run ins and Punishment towards Mankind who he deems to being going against his Wishes!  The Engineers intended to use the BLACK GOO... but GOD had used the Flood/Deluge!

However... God did at one time have High Hopes for his Creation and saw they can Redeem themselves and HENCE he got NOAH to create the Arc...  instead of just KILLING all Mankind and having to Start-Again!

We can ask would the Engineers NOT consider doing the same? Or maybe some Engineers took pity and decided to take some Humans to another place FAR FAR away where the Engineers can Interact with these and give them a 2nd Chance and learn from the Mistakes that caused Mankind to behave in ways that UPSET them.

So you could explore such a Expanded Universe...

You could even at latter point introduce some incoming Humans from Earth, and what this could do as far as the other Humans who had been raised to NOT be as Corrupt as Mankind on Earth.

Or after the events of Planet 4, some returning Engineers Discover what happened, and they then go "right off we go to other Human Colonies and WIPE them all out, its the only way to be sure"

So you have some Engineers arrive at this World where Humans and Engineers are in Harmony, and want to Destroy those Humans as a Precaution against Rebellion.

You could then see those Engineers on this World, stand up against this Plot, and a Conflict Arises... which then leads those Humans to ASK what the hell was all that about!

Which is when these Engineers can reveal to the Humans their True Origins, and about WHY the Engineers then decided to UNDO certain Creations... which could give indication to the Process of the Death Camps well the Outposts to Create such Deadly Biological Warfare.

So these Humans who may have believed they are alone, with their Engineer Guardians then Discover that there is a whole Galaxy of Creations/Humans... and maybe they then want to SET-OFF and explore!

Even as far as coming to Earth after the Events of Alien Resurrection and Discovering that Mankind really had turned their Paradise into a Hell Hole!

so yes via this we could get answers to some of those Questions that Dr Shaw would have had...  and indeed we can open up the Franchise to STAR-TREK levels.

I mention this because THIS is what i was going to cover with my Prometheus 3 as far as WHERE  it was that David and Dr Shaw end up.... which is a World inhabited by Humans Many Thousands of Light Years from Earth!

A World that would take Human Ships circa 2100-2120 Hundreds of Years to Reach even if they had the Directions.. but a Journey that is VASTLY less for Engineer Ships.

Gavin

Apr-08-2019 6:16 AM

I agree with Emma Watts on this one. Yes, serialized/streamed content allows greater character development but the harsh truth is that some franchises are better suited for the small screen, others for the big screen.

Take X-Files. It worked brilliantly as a weekly serial, not so much when brought to the big screen. And while I would love a true Ghostbusters 3, I think the franchise would be better suited for the small screen, essentially as a live-action reimagining of The Real Ghostbusters, but with a new team.

Of course, there is the spin-off route whereby we could have small screen shows that don't feature the alien but instead focus on Weyland-Yutani or the Colonial Marines. While these shows would undoubtedly flesh out the aforementioned elements of the franchise, there would be a desire by executives to at least reference the alien, which in turn would cheapen and lesser the character.

Alien works best on the big screen, it is just that Fox (and now Disney) need to figure out how they want the alien to remain relevant to both modern audiences and fans. To do this the creature needs to evolve and adapt and become a greater threat without being weighed down with overly bloated concepts such as creationism and pre-visitation.

BigDave

Apr-08-2019 8:57 AM

I agree that any ALIEN TV Project would not be ideal if its about the Iconic Monster, i think you have to bring this to the Big Screen!

I think the Ghost Busters is interesting, i think while we may get a Ghost Busters  3 (bring the Gang back) it would be NICE to see them Pass the Torch and introduce 1-2 NEW Characters who they maybe could then Carry On with as a TV Series.

Or indeed have a Alternative Ghost Busters Universe as a TV Series.. i think thats a Formula that could work well, with Each Episode being devoted to HUNTING of a New Ghost Encounter, so indeed just like the Real Ghost Busters Cartoon.

I think Gavin that could be interesting to explore.

Chris

Apr-08-2019 12:41 PM

Honestly I was never a fan of the Alien franchise being streamlined for TV. Like Leto and Gavin said, to me Alien belongs on the big screen. A TV series without a Xenomorph? I know there was rumor of an Alien TV series focused on the perspectives of Androids, but I fail to see how that could have any significant depth beyond 3 episodes if other aspects of the franchise, namely the Xenomorph were neglected.

I would be all for a series which aims to fill in the gaps between Prometheus and Covenant however. But there's no way Fassbender would sign on for something like that.

We likely would not get a star-studded cast, cliche dynamics and eventually the series would become bland. I see an Alien TV series detracting from the franchise, not adding to it. The anticipation and lead up to release are what made Prometheus and Covenant so huge, regardless of your appreciation or lack thereof for either. It was still more monumental and as a fan, more engaging and exciting.

I just don't want to see the Alien franchise bled dry. I would much rather see them invest serious coin into new films to expand the mythos.

BigDave

Apr-08-2019 3:14 PM

"A TV series without a Xenomorph?"

I think its a Good Point to raise, i think while there could be much more to the Franchise than the Xenomorph, it appears that a Majority would expect ANYTHING related to the Franchise to revolve around the Xenomorph, and all other Side Plots and Ideas are just that a Side-Plot. 

So Sadly Trying to Emphasis on other Elements could just been seen as a Distraction to some Fans.  I Personally Applaud Ridley Scott for trying something Different, there is so much Potential with the Prequels as far as Expanding the Universe, but it appears this does-not settle well with all who may want the Franchise Contained within a BOX (Tent-Pole).

I think while the Association with ALIEN is the Xenomorph, i think we have to remember that bringing the Beast to any Format as far as Movie or TV/Streaming is something that is NOT going to be Cheap...  due to the Special Effects to pull it off, unless we do-not see the Monsters Much, and so we NEVER really see it Fully, that could save Money on NOT needing to have Full Body Suits/Animatronics or CGI.

I would say and this is just my Opinion, that you would have to ASK where do you take a TV Series about the Xenomorph anyway?

I think you cant have it take up a massive part of the Screen Time due to Financial Reasons, and i think you Run the Risk the more you show the Beast Over and Over the more chance it becomes a Space Jason Voorhees so you have to think carefully how and when you use the Xenomorph but have Side Plots that are Well Written and Engaging

I think the more you continue the Same Tropes, then maybe you run the risk of it becoming Stagnant... but some Fans would not mind...  For me  i think you cant keep having a Similar Plot of,  Helpless Humans end up coming across Xenomorphs, and Revelations that its all a Plot by the Sinister Human Corporations to Obtain a Xenomorph, and then we have a Protagonist Hero/Heroin come and Save the Day!  More so if its going to be VERY action Based, Run, Shoot and Hide

I think you need to look at some of the Expanded Mythos and Incorporate that but find the Balance.  But some of these Expanded Mythos appear to be a Distraction for some Fans who want to have Story about the Xenomorph and some about Ripley and could not CARE Less about the Company, Engineers or their History/Agenda etc. Certainly a Big NO to more Fricken Androids...

I have to respect those Fans, opinions because indeed the Base Components of the Franchise were about the Queen and Eggs...   And so i think any ALIEN movie would be expected to connect to them, any ALIEN TV Show likewise.

Even if they try and do a BASED in the Universe but NOT about the Xenomorph, Movie or TV Show, you will still get a% of Fans wanting to know WHY it does-not have the Xenomorph in it or linked... 

If you make a Alternative Story within the Universe that does-not carry the Alien Name or Related... say if the Show was Called.  Odyssey  which could be about Human Journey to Space Exploration and show the Rivalry of Weyland and Yutani in regards to trying to Monopolize Space or indeed other Technological Advancements which include AI/Synthetics.

The Problem would be HOW do they Market it and engage casual Fans, who may not even know about or know little about the  ALIEN Franchise?   And who would some ALIEN Fans feel about any Spin-Off that would NOT cover the Xenomorph or anything related to LV-223/426?

Would they be like "cool i never knew Odyssey was set in the Alien Universe, i think i give this a watch" or would they be like ONCE they discover that it is set in the same Universe they would be like "ok so when are we going to connect to the Alien or Ripley?"  or IF they know it was about the Universe but would not be about Xenomorphs would they be like "Nah think i pass on that"

I think IF they Give it a Weyland: Odyssey Title then more will expect a ALIEN connection, even more so if it has a ALIEN Title or is Marketed Heavy as being SET within the ALIEN Universe.    

Its a Catch 22, because IF there is NO Alien Related Name in the Title... which include Weyland: Prefix then its how do they drum up interest?

I guess we have to see how Ridley Scotts unrelated Stand Alone TV Series, Raised  by Wolves does...  Maybe trying NEW ideas should be left to Independent Stories that have NO connection to the ALIEN Universe and we should concentrate on more Popcorn Xenomorph type Movies?

I just feel its a SHAME... because prior to 2012 our Alien Franchise was about....  Human Conspiracy in a Greedy Corporations attempts to Obtain and Utilize a Parasitic Alien Organism  and using Innocent/Unaware Humans to obtain the said Specimen but Ripley comes in and Kicks Ass and Saves the Day!  I Question how many times could we see this repeated?  How Many times could we Continue to Revolve around Queen, Eggs and Xenomorphs without steering too FAR from the Aesthetic of the Monster?

You can replace Weyland-Yutani with United Systems Military or even IKEA!   You can replace Ripley with another Heroin or Hero,  (especially if in the same Mold).  If the Plot will be about said Company Wanting the Xenomorph that does-not defer much from the Appearance of the Queen. Eggs and Xenomorph then your kind of just Repeating yourself. UNLESS the other aspects of the Plot and Characters are Very Well done every time...

The more you stick to the same Tropes, then you have just as much chance of a AVPR Churning out than a Alien/Aliens.

Sorry for the RANT!

I Just Felt 2012 opened up and expanded the Franchise, and 2017 has kind of put that back into a Bubble! Once we have ALIEN 5, 6, 7 and Alien Xeno TV.... whats NEXT?

I feel other Elements could be explored in Novels, or TV Series but we mainly get ALIENY Novels Churned over and over and Comics...  there appears to be little Originality.

But thats just my Opinion, and i think more Fans are going to Enjoy such Avenues than NOT welcome  such ideas. them.... and Personally i think its the SAFER Money Maker for them.... and it ALWAYS comes down to what they think would make the most $$$$  MORE so with Disney.

I Moon Girl

Apr-10-2019 2:20 AM

Good.  A TV series requires to much of the audiences free time.  I'd rather have a good quality movie with the perks of seeing it in theaters (big screen and great sound system) instead of some 6 or 7 episode tv show.  I don't mind paying a movie ticket to see an ALIEN movie for 2 1/2 hours.  I do mind that I have to make time to watch a tv show every Wednesday that lasts an hour for 2 months; and that's even if it is being played on a channel that I can get.  Hopefully the series would've been available on cable.  If not, I guess I wouldn't get to watch it!

Just give the fans a movie in the next few years.  I think that would just make everyone happy, even though it should've been sooner, but FOX was in a buy out.  So, I guess we can all understand the lateness of another movie.

Thoughts_Dreams

Apr-10-2019 8:32 AM

I think that the idea of a TV-series could be interesting if it is done right. There are more things in the franchise than Ripley and the Xeno. Look at 28 Days Later (a movie that I really like), the zombies were just there to further the story, that is how the Xeno should be also. Actually you could have monsters that are related to it but not be Xenos (Neomorph, Squid-monster, etc.) so to speak, I would accept that.

To me it should be clear that it is in the alien franchise and not some confusing stuff like “is it an alien movie or not?” Decide if it is in the alien-verse or not. If it isn’t then make it into its own thing.

The colonial marines could work, it would be some action-stuff but if it is handled right then sure why not? What else is it that they have been dealing with other than what they did in Aliens? What if there was a side within the colonial marines that was in a conspiracy about something and the rest do not know about it. When they that benefit from it get in a situation that they are afraid that they will loose control over what ever that is they we see that faction trying to do what ever they can to keep its power.

More about the Engineers would be interesting. I would watch that thing if they get it right. That is one thing that Prometheus did right but unfortunately AC seemed to put an end to them. You got to keep it obvious to people that it is tied to the Alien franchise and how. Perhaps they have seeded other worlds and have made other monsters? We could also see something about their culture, and so on.

Hadley’s Hope or something similar could work, those that have watched Aliens would probably get it if it is done well. Maybe the Name Weyland is more known now when we have had Prometheus and if it is done right and the Weyland name is used then maybe it could work. This was well made in Aliens
We could follow some workers or colonists that live their daily lives at a colony run by the Weyland company and the dangers that they face. What could be tricky is to avoid it being like an Aliens 2 but that could be done in some way, don’t ask me how. They do not need to have to focus on soldiers, or the Xeno. Maybe there are more monsters in the Alien-verse that are not Xenos?

Not interested in anything that is from the perspective of the androids (about what Chris wrote). Alien Covenant killed that one for me

 

BigDave

Apr-11-2019 7:14 PM

Good Points Thoughts_Dreams

Especially 28 Days later reference....  like the Walking Dead Series, at first it was about Zombies, but then they just became a Sub Plot... showing Humans are more of a Threat to Each other... its how you handle any such Plot... there are LOADS of Zombie Movies and Shows...  the Ones that WORK are those who use Human Characters and other Threats Well!

The Prequels open up a lot to be expanded... the idea of a Hadleys Hope but not about Xenomorphs could be tricky, and indeed its about what other threats could they face before the outbreak?

Hadleys Hope is bound to NOT be the only Colony/Mining place that Weyland-Yutani had set up... so there could be another place that Humans have set-up on, that eventually they stumble on something different...  like what if they DUG UP some Black Goo Urns/Ampoules..... even USED/EMPTY ones at First so they are NO harm and seen as some Archeological Find!  Where they think the World they are no must have been inhabited by a Ancient Race.

So they go FULL SCALE Dig..... and Regret it!

Alien: Exhumation (or Exhumed) could work (was title for a project i worked on of similar, but smaller Mining Outpost... more like size of Outpost 31 from The Thing where they uncover a Organism that i infer is what Engineers Re-Engineered the Xenomorph from).

But title could fit with any kind of Mining Colony who Unearth something related to the Black Goo or Xenomorph.

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