Noah Hawley Explains Why ‘Prometheus’ and ‘Covenant’ Are ‘Inherently Less Useful’ for ‘Alien’ Prequel Series

“Fargo” showrunner Noah Hawley teased his new FX series “Alien” in a recent interview with KCRW’s The Business.

Though plot details are being kept under wraps, Hawley’s “Alien” series is set on Earth and roughly 70 years in future, predating the original film series.

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Hawley was asked whether or not he would incorporate the backstory in Ridley Scott’s “Prometheus” (2012) and “Alien: Covenant” (2017) into his FX series. The prequel films included a controversial backstory where the aliens were manufactured as a bioweapon by a mysterious race known as the Engineers.

“Ridley and I have talked about this — and many, many elements of the show,” Hawley said. “For me, and for a lot of people, this ‘perfect life form’ — as it was described in the first film — is the product of millions of years of evolution that created this creature that may have existed for a million years out there in space. The idea that, on some level, it was a bioweapon created half an hour ago, that’s just inherently less useful to me. And in terms of the mythology, what’s scary about this monster, is that when you look at those first two movies, you have this retro-futuristic technology. You have giant computer monitors, these weird keyboards … You have to make a choice. Am I doing that?”

Hawley explained how the technology in Scott’s original “Alien” film series will function in the FX show, saying, “In the prequels, Ridley made the technology thousands of years more advanced than the technology of ‘Alien,’ which is supposed to take place in those movies’ future. There’s something about that that doesn’t really compute for me. I prefer the retro-futurism of the first two films, and so that’s the choice I’ve made — there’s no holograms. The convenience of that beautiful Apple store technology is not available to me.”

The “Alien” series shut down production in August due to the dual Hollywood strikes in 2023, but is expected to resume filming soon in Thailand. The cast includes Sydney Chandler, Timothy Olyphant, Alex Lawther, Essie Davis, David Rysdahl, Samuel Blenkin and Adarsh Gourav, among others.

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