It seems like plans for the Alien: Covenant sequel have changed yet again, this time with director Ridley Scott saying he'll likely slim down the number of aliens in the planned sequel.
Scott returned to his famous sci-fi franchise in 2012 with Prometheus, a movie that only had a few loose connections to the Xenomorph story explored in the original four Alien movies. However, with its sequel, Alien: Covenant, the director doubled-down on everything Xenomorph, giving audiences a movie that very much felt like an old-school Alien film. It just so happens that the return to the original formula didn't translate to box office success. Scott recently said that the franchise should move away from the iconic alien monster, and now it seems like he has decided to explore some different ideas with the sequel.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, the director confirmed that he would make another film in the Alien universe, but that things would have to change this time around: "I think what we have to do is gradually drift away from the alien stuff," he said. Instead, Scott would like to explore another facet of the universe he created, one that has always been around but that was never the main focus of the story: artificial intelligence. "I think if you go again you need to start finding another solution that’s more interesting," he added. "I think AI is becoming much more dangerous and therefore more interesting."
Scott then went on to enumerate various androids that featured in his movies, from Michael Fassbender and Ian Holm's characters in the Alien movies to the antagonists of his other sci-fi franchise classic, Blade Runner. "They put two AIs together and they were communing," he added, referring to last July's much-circulated Facebook story about two AIs who started communicating together. "It already invented a f—ing language! And they couldn’t decipher what the language was so they had to switch them off. What was said and where’s it gone?"
Clearly this real-life event inspired Scott, and it could propel his vision as he moves ahead with his next Alien movie. Downgrading the presence of Xenomorphs and exploring the androids as the real threat to humanity's survival -- something that was already touched upon in both Prometheus and Covenant -- would follow the themes already established while sending Scott's franchise into uncharted territory.