Disney’s impending merger with Fox will result in them owning an enormous chunk of the cultural landscape. The biggest prize is, of course, the X-Men and Fantastic Four rights, which will mean the characters can be incorporated into the MCU and bring Disney very close to their dream of owning the IP to the entire Marvel Universe. But there’s a couple of other big franchises whose ownership by the Mouse House might spell choppy waters ahead. I’m talking about the often intertwined Alien and Predator properties.
Fans had feared that Disney’s reticence to release any movies above a PG-13 rating might be the kiss of death for these franchises, but this week, CEO Bob Iger assured us that R-rated properties would indeed continue. During a quarterly earnings call, Iger took a question asking specifically about Fox’s R-rated material, to which he replied that there are plans afoot to release more adult films through a subsidiary company such as FX or Fox Searchlight.
That said, neither of the two science fiction franchises are in a great place right now. The financial and critical failure of Alien: Covenant means it seems unlikely that Ridley Scott will get to complete his trilogy and Shane Black’s The Predator was a huge letdown and failed to make an impact at the box office.
However, with Disney now pulling the strings, it might be time to reboot the universe and bring things back to basics. While I don’t think the original Alien has aged much in the 40 years(!) since its release, it’d be neat to see what a new director could do with the property without the weight of continuity dragging it down.
I suspect we’ll know sometime within the next few years. Though we might have a bit of a wait until their next installments, I don’t think we’ve seen the last of these gross-ass but cool as hell space monsters.