But fans of the sci-fi/horror franchise, which sputtered out with 1997's "Alien: Resurrection," are still eager to see what filmmaker Neill Blomkamp can do with the material.
Blomkamp, who made the respected sci-fi action thriller "District 9" and has a new movie, "Chappie," coming out March 6, posted an Instagram message last week implying his next film will be a new "Alien" project.
According to the Hollywood Reporter
, a CNN content partner, Blomkamp will ignore the last two sequels in the series -- "Alien 3" and "Alien: Resurrection" -- and pick up the storyline after the events of the James Cameron-directed "Aliens."
Beyond that, details about Blomkamp's "Alien" are still scarce. There's no word about when the film might hit theaters or whether it would bring back characters from the earlier movies -- although star Sigourney Weaver is likely to return
A Blomkamp reboot of "Alien" seems promising (although we haven't seen "Chappie" yet). Then again, Hollywood is more than capable of screwing it up.
Here are five ways they could blow it.
Don't cast Sigourney Weaver
Sure, someone could make a great "Alien" movie without her. But why would you?
She's a fine actress, she wants to do it and she would lend instant credibility to the project.
Luckily, Blomkamp appears to agree.
Chatter about a Blomkamp "Alien" movie began almost two months ago when the South African filmmaker started posting "Alien"-themed concept art to Instagram -- including images of Weaver as her Ripley character.
Weaver also has a role in "Chappie" and has gushed about Blomkamp's talent, fueling speculation that the two will work together again.
Keep the aliens exactly the same
With their skeletal bodies, armored heads, dual sets of jaws and fangs dripping with venom, the "Alien" xenomorphs are among the most iconic -- and freaky -- creatures in science fiction.
They're also almost four decades old, originally created by H.R. Giger
We're not saying Blomkamp should replace them with something totally different. But every species evolves.
Make them more cunning and even scarier looking. It's time for a refresh.
Thankfully, Blomkamp seems to have done just that with his early concept art.
Have them attack Earth
Invading space aliens have been a science-fiction staple since at least 1951's "The Day the Earth Stood Still." But having a marauding alien terrorize Times Square or scamper down Sunset Boulevard would look pretty silly.
The "Alien" movies have generated suspense largely through the claustrophobic feel of humans trapped in enclosed spaces with deadly critters who might pop out at any moment.
So instead of Earth, what about this: What if an alien stowaway or two infiltrate an exclusive space colony -- like Blomkamp's own Elysium
It might be satisfying to see the toothy monsters wreak havoc on a bunch of pampered elitists.
Bow to 'Prometheus'
Ridley Scott's 2012 film "Prometheus" was a prequel of sorts to the first "Alien." And a rumored "Prometheus" sequel, if it ever happens, is expected to veer even further from the "Alien" mythology.
Nothing against that film or against Scott, the creative force behind the "Alien" franchise. But Blomkamp should feel free to pursue his own vision.
"Alien: The Musical!"
Haha! Just kidding. We hope.