Although 2012’s Prometheus was met with a mixed response from both fans and critics, it did well enough for a follow-up, this year’s Alien: Covenant. In the lead up to Covenant‘s release, director Ridley Scott spoke about his plans for more movies, suggesting that the Covenant sequel might start shooting in 2018. However, the movie’s disappointing box office performance has cast doubt on these plans, and now Scott has admitted it might not happen.
In a roundtable interview hosted by The Hollywood Reporter, Scott explained that he was working on many projects at the same time as Covenant, and suggested that time was nearly up for the Alien series. “It was a crossfire of too much business”, he said. “I’m doing a lot of TV and films, there are six films going out this year. I figured it was a good piece of business to follow through Prometheus, which, from ground zero, had good lift-off. So we went to Covenant to perpetuate the idea and [revive] the franchise of the Alien. [However] I think the beast has almost run out, personally.”
While Scott does not mention the movie’s financial performance, it was clearly well below what was expected. The movie made $240 million worldwide, much less than Prometheus‘s $403 million take.
In March, the director suggested that the next movie would be called Alien: Awakening, and that the series would continue for several more films beyond that. “There will be more after this. If this is successful, and then the next one, and then there will definitely be three more,” he said. “If you really want a franchise, I can keep cranking it for another six. I’m not going to close it down again. No way.”
The other big sci-fi movie that Scott was involved with in 2017 was Blade Runner 2049, this time as producer. The sequel to his 1982 classic has to date pulled in a similar box office take to Covenant—$239 million to date–but on a higher budget. It is estimated that Blade Runner 2049 had a production budget of $150 million, compared to Covenant‘s $97 million.