Join me for another round-up of the latest news from the world(s) of science fiction.
Newscast 1: ALIEN 5 is, or maybe isn’t, happening
When Neill Blomkamp revealed that ALIEN 5 was his next project, fans – me included – basically went nuts. DISTRICT 9 remains one of my top 10 SF movies, and I really enjoyed ELYSIUM. Blomkamp seemed like the right director on so many levels: he’s committed, makes beautiful movies, and is an obvious fan of the franchise.
Over the last few days, the internet has been awash with news as to whether ALIEN 5 is – or is not – happening. It all started with a very intelligent conversation with Michael Biehn, during which he discussed the apparent plot details for the next ALIEN movie.
As is often the case, it appears that Biehn was wrongly quoted, and he was actually discussing possible plot details.
There had been earlier discussions about how ALIEN 5 would (or might) ignore ALIEN 3 and ALIEN: RESURRECTION, and the whole “passing the torch to Newt” idea is certainly consistent with that. The latest news is that the film will be delayed, subject to PROMETHEUS 2 (aka PARADISE LOST, or as we saw last week, now ALIEN: COVENANT). I can see the sense in this, because of the titles if nothing else, but this places the movie in some jeopardy. What if COVENANT flops? Having seen the awesome concept art from Blomkamp’s proposal, it seems to me that the films were set to take very different routes…
Newscast 2: First trailer for CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR
In happier news, CIVIL WAR looks totally awesome. Lots of great character moments, and a furthering of the Marvel mythology. These movies just get better and better; CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER was a fantastically-epic superhero movie, rightfully applauded as “redefining” the superhero genre.
I’m getting some WATCHMEN vibes from this trailer (signing of accords, putting limits on the powers of super heroes, etc)…
Newscast 3: THE EXPANSE – episode 1 available now!
James SA Corey’s incredible EXPANSE series just gets better and better. I’ve been an avid reader of the books (NEMESIS GAMES is still on my to-buy list), and when the news broke of a TV series there was a groundswell of popular support. Like GAME OF THRONES, THE EXPANSE has the benefit of a huge fanbase – but this double-edged, because there’s a lot to live up to!
Luckily, THE EXPANSE TV series looks and sounds great!
Due to premier in December on US cable, the first episode is available to stream from Syfy.com right now.
(As of writing this article, I couldn’t actually get this to work! It may be a region issue – there’s no scheduled date for release in the UK yet…)
Newscast 4: LEGENDS OF TOMORROW trailer
DC seems to be going from strength to strength with its stable of TV super heroes. We have ARROW (still going strong, several series in), THE FLASH (powering into series two), and SUPERGIRL (which, despite misgivings, is actually a classically fresh foray into the genre). LEGENDS OF TOMORROW seeks to combine several DC franchises into a single series – a sort of DAWN OF JUSTICE for the small screen.
Again, a great trailer which demonstrates good production values and a similar level of attention to the detail as we saw in ARROW and THE FLASH. 2016 is certainly looking to be another fine year for super heroes…
Newscast 5: LOST IN SPACE is coming back to Netflix
Many of us fondly remember the LOST IN SPACE TV series for its kooky, wild but ultimately safe take on science fiction. It’s been absent from our screens for many years, despite an attempt to modernise the premise with a cinematic excursion in 1998.
There isn’t much news to report on this one, but it has been announced that Netflix has acquired the rights to the series! This is set to be a “reboot” (which, let’s face it, can mean anything these days…). No plot details yet but the highly-episodal nature of the original series definitely lends itself to the Netflix format.