Could Ridley Scott's upcoming Alien prequel have its new sexy, ass-kicking heroine in Charlize Theron? Perhaps, if the recent report from New York Magazine's Vulture is correct. (This time.)
According to the rumors we've been reading for the past few months, Swedish actress Noomi Rapace was said to be the front-runner for the role. The star of the original Swedish language versions of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and its sequels, the alleged role in Scott's return to the franchise would have been her big breakthrough into the US market. However, according to Vulture, 20th Century Fox (whose creative difficulties with Scott on this film are already legendary) are of the mindset that this film, whose budget (according to previous reports) could exceed $250 million, will need a bankable star. If true, then Theron could be leading what is described as a more multicultural space crew with names like future Magneto, Michael Fassbender, Asian femme fatale Michelle Yeoh, and a CGI Android character called Engineer 1, among others. However, the report is far from confirmed, and the source, Vulture did recently get taken to the woodshed by Fox Senior VP Chris Petrikin after they reported some bad info about the film's supposed title. So, where does that leave the film?
Theron is said to have dropped out of appearing in an upcoming Clint Eastwood-directed biopic about notorious FBI Director J. Edgar Hooover, and apparently 20th Century Fox has viewed this sudden vacancy as a huge opportunity for the somewhat stalled Alien prequel. While Theron's work has been primarily in drama, she does have some action films on her resume such as 2005's Æon Flux, the adaptation of the cult animated series that appeared on MTV. The beautiful Oscar-winning actress' billing on the marquee would undoubtedly raise the profile of the film and help justify its budget. Interestingly enough, Theron was also just confirmed to play the Evil Queen in the upcoming live-action Snow White and the Huntsman, a film which may be joined by would-be Alien cast-mate Michael Fassbender.
The real story still remains the conflict of interests between Ridley Scott and Fox. It was clear from Scott's initial (likely unfiltered) interviews about the prequel project, which has already been cut down to one film from his original vision of two, that his artistic vision was in direct conflict with the realities of the costs and viability of the franchise itself. The franchise had been quite watered-down with the recent Alien vs. Predator films, yet in his excitement, Scott believed that he could bring it back in such a way that its box-office gross would challenge Avatar. Yet, Scott (along with any respectable fan) wanted a film with hard-R rating, but as many know, that severely limits an audience, and as evidenced by the last less-than-stellar outing in 2007's Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem, which did go with an R-rating, the film found itself without much of an audience. It will be interesting to see where this behind-the-scenes battle takes the direction of the film.
How is Charlize Theron sounding as your new (possibly) Ripley-like heroine?
Source: New York Magazine's Vulture