×

Sigourney Weaver Promises Neill Blomkamp’s ‘Alien’ Film Will ‘Break New Ground’

Sigourney Weaver promises that the “Alien” franchise is in good hands with “District 9” director Neill Blomkamp, and she’s looking forward to returning to her signature role of Ellen Ripley in a new installment in the science-fiction series.

“I can’t think of a better director,” Weaver told Variety at the New York City premiere of Blomkamp’s latest film, “Chappie.” “He’s a real fan. I think he’ll be true to the world and take it in unexpected directions. It’s got a lot of sinew in it. It will certainly stand up to the others and probably break a lot of new ground as well.”

Weaver appears as a ruthless weapons manufacturer in “Chappie,” a film about a police droid who is able to think and feel. She said Blomkamp expressed his admiration for the first two films in her iconic sci-fi series, Ridley Scott’s “Alien” and James Cameron’s “Aliens,” while they were shooting.

“Suddenly it seemed so obvious that this would happen,” said Weaver. “We’ve been in touch the last year, and he’s shared wonderful artwork.”

Blomkamp is one of the leading science-fiction directors working today, whose brutal visions of the future also include the film “Elysium,” so he would seem an obvious choice for the gig. Nevertheless, he said that the world of “Alien” is a departure for him.

“I would love to make something in that world because the films use terror and dread and filmmaking techniques that are different than what I’ve dabbled in before,” he said.

In the past, Blomkamp has used the science-fiction genre to explore social issues, such as health care and income inequality, that vex modern society. “Chappie” and its examination of artificial intelligence is no different, star Hugh Jackman argues.

“In this movie he’s asking, ‘what is the soul?'” Jackman said. “‘What is the spirit? What is consciousness? Is it something definable by science or is part of something more mystical and magical?'”

One of Blomkamp’s defining traits as a director is how he grounds his fantastical stories in realism, says Weaver.

“It is set in the future, but it’s almost like an alternate present,” the actress said. “It’s not happening in a far away world or an unrecognizable planet. I love how he uses this genre not for fantasy, but for human stories, even with robots.”

Some people are alarmed by the ubiquity of computers and digital devices in modern society, but Jackman is no luddite.

“Bring it on,” he said. “For me I’m looking forward to driverless cars.”

More Film

  • Matt Smith

    Matt Smith, 'Leave No Trace' Star Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie Circle Edgar Wright Movie

    Matt Smith and “Leave No Trace” star Thomasin Harcourt McKenzie are in negotiations to join Edgar Wright’s next film, “Last Night in Soho,” sources tell Variety. Details are vague about the psychological horror movie, other than it being set in London’s Soho district. Anya Taylor Joy is also in the cast. Production is expected to [...]

  • Vice Media

    Vice Media Taps Joe Simon as Chief Technology Officer (EXCLUSIVE)

    Joe Simon has been tapped as chief technology officer at Vice Media. The newly created role will include oversight of data analytics, engineering, information technology, media operations, media technology, post production, and systems management. Prior to Vice, Simon spent three years as Encompass Digital Media’s chief operating officer. Previously he held the chief technology officer [...]

  • Michael B Jordan denzel washington

    Michael B. Jordan to Star in Denzel Washington's 'Journal for Jordan'

    Michael B. Jordan is in talks to star in Sony’s “Journal for Jordan,” a drama that will be directed by Denzel Washington. The movie, penned by Oscar-nominated screenwriter Virgil Williams, is based on the true story of Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Dana Canedy’s love affair with First Sergeant Charles Monroe King. King kept a journal [...]

  • Sylvester Stallone

    Sylvester Stallone's Superhero Drama 'Samaritan' Lands at MGM

    MGM is developing the superhero drama “Samaritan” with Sylvester Stallone attached to star and produce through his Balboa Productions. The studio has acquired Bragi F. Schut’s script, which centers on a boy learning that a missing superhero, who vanished 20 years earlier after a battle, may still be alive. MGM will develop “Samaritan” with Stallone [...]

  • Kendrick Lamar

    Oscars: Kendrick Lamar and SZA Will Not Perform 'Black Panther' Song (EXCLUSIVE)

    Despite the Academy’s efforts to secure Kendrick Lamar and SZA for a performance of the Oscar-nominated song “All the Stars” from “Black Panther” on the upcoming Oscars telecast, the duo will not be a part of the show, Variety has learned. The reason, according to a source close to the situation, is logistics and timing. [...]

  • Oscars Spa Treatments

    Area Spas Offer Red Carpet Treatments in Time for Oscars

    From a shopping session with a celebrity stylist to a covert airport pickup, these hotels and spas are offering even more curated packages for the ultimate VIP Oscar experience. For the Jetsetter Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills’ Doheny Suite Experience package allows travelers to evade the paparazzi with an underground or curbside [...]

  • Rocketman

    See Taron Egerton Transform Into Elton John in New ‘Rocketman’ Trailer

    A new trailer for “Rocketman,” the Elton John “fantasy musical” in theaters May 31, was released today. As the singer, actor Taron Egerton (“Eddie the Eagle”) performs “Tiny Dancer” and is seen honing his talent at home, rising to fame and grappling with the pitfalls that superstardom can bring. The film also stars Jamie Bell (as John’s [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content