Fans of the Alien franchise can agree on many things. For example, Sigourney Weaver is a Goddess, Alien 3 is a dumpster fire and the AVP movies never happened. However, another thing the fans can agree on is that the series is normally filled with upcoming, as well as well known, talents. Alien had Ian Holm, Tom Skerritt, and Sigourney Weaver. Aliens gave us Bill Paxton and Michael Biehn. Alien: Resurrection brought Winona Ryder and Ron Perlman into the mix. Even Prometheus had Noomi Rapace, Charlize Theron and Michael Fassbender leading the charge. It looks as though Alien: Covenant will be continuing that tradition.
Katherine Waterston and Billy Crudup will be joining returning cast members, Michael Fassbender and Noomi Rapace, in Alien: Covenant. However, one of the stand out castings for the upcoming Ridley Scott’s newest feature is Danny McBride. McBride is an actor mostly known for comedies like This Is The End and Your Highness.
In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, McBride shed some light on his character in the upcoming Prequel/Sequel:
“I’m the pilot of the spaceship Covenant, which is a colonization ship, searching for a planet where we might start life anew. I run the ship.”
As I said, having actors like McBride, especially for comic relief, is nothing new to the franchise. Bill Paxton’s Hudson character in Aliens and Ron Perlman’s Johner character in Alien: Resurrection were used for this effect as well. However, being that McBride is playing a pilot, it begs the question of whether he will be comic relief or a more serious character. I’m not saying it can’t be done. I will say, though, making the turn from awkward, obnoxious comedy to a role meant to be serious could go either way for the actor. Personally, I wish him the best and I sincerely hope he can pull it off if that’s the case.
But, McBride’s role is only half the news. The actor also revealed that practical effects would be used for much of the film.
“I didn’t know if it would be all green screen, but most of the stuff is practical effects: when you’re running from an alien it’s really a dude in an alien suit coming after you! The sets are incredible and you’re in them: We go through some inclement weather at one point on the spaceship and this whole gigantic set is on a gimbal, shaking up and down. You don’t have to use your imagination.”
Hearing that from a direct source on set makes the kid in me happier than words can express. We’re in a world where CGI has taken over everything. It’s so refreshing to hear that practical effects will be making a comeback in the Alien series. Being that the film is directed by the originator of the series, Ridley Scott, I have no worries. I loved Prometheus and I’m sure I’ll love this.
Alien: Covenant is set to hit theaters August 4, 2017. For now, here’s the trailer for the film that started it all; Alien