It’s been an odd thing trying to peg the relationship between the upcoming Prometheus and the classic Alien with which it has long said to “share DNA.” The insistence that it is not a “prequel” exactly has always been strong, even if what little information we knew walked, talked, and acted like a duck. All hints and rumors aside now, Damon Lindelof –notorious co-creator and driving force behind the story of Lost– has spoken extensively about his work on the scrip for Prometheus on the Kevin Pollack Chat Show, and it boils down to a few key things…
“It started as an Alien prequel. That is what everybody wanted it to be…
…a true prequel should essentially proceed the events of the original film, but be about something entirely different, feature different characters , have an entirely different theme, although it takes place in that same world. That was my fundamental feeling about what this movie wanted to be.
I also do feel that this movie is the movie I would want to see as a fanboy, take place in that Alien universe, which precedes the events of the original Alien, but is not necessarily burdened by all the tropes of that franchise with Facehuggers and Chestbursters, and all that stuff that I love… but its sorta like, we’ve seen it before, can we do something different this time? And thats the movie that Ridley wanted to make.”
Okay, so maybe he still doesn’t nail it down, but it’s quite clear that the sticklers can relax and call this thing a prequel. The idea behind it is pretty much what we’ve heard it all along, and the label boils down to semantics. That said, I understand their reticence to use that baggage-loaded term, and it sounds like this genuinely intentioned as a story built with the same pieces, but not loaded with the by-the-numbers fan service. That sort of approach happens almost never, so it remains a unique case.
There’s more of the interview you can get in to below (it’s a hefty two-and-a-half hours long), but those are the important details for those following Prometheus. There’s more discussion on that front, but it’s essentially Lindelof shitting on the conceptual basis of the Prequel Trilogy, and describing the meeting process that got him hired on Prometheus in the first place.
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