Billy Crudup in 'Alien: Covenant' Talks

The cast of Ridley Scott's "Alien: Covenant" continues to grow, with Deadline reporting on Thursday afternoon that veteran actor Billy Crudup is in "advance negotiations" for a key part in the prequel/sequel. No further details on the role are yet available, as much of the film remains a closely guarded secret.

Crudup recently appeared in 2015's critically acclaimed "Spotlight," and is known for his roles in "Almost Famous," "Big Fish," "Public Enemies" and for playing Dr. Manhattan in 2009's "Watchmen" adaptation. If the casting becomes official, he'll be a newcomer to the "Alien" franchise, which started with 1979's original, also directed by Ridley Scott.

"Alien: Covenant" is the sequel to 2012's "Prometheus," and is planned as the second film in a trilogy of prequels, set before the original "Alien" movies. It's said to take place 10 years after "Prometheus," with Michael Fassbender on board to reprise his role as David, with a cast also including Katherine Waterston, Demian Bichir, Danny McBride, Jussie Smollett, Amy Seimetz, Carmen Ejogo and Callie Hernandez. "Alien: Covenant" has a current release date of Oct. 6, 2017.

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