So Ridley Scott is apparently done meeting with potential leads for his upcoming "Alien" prequel and surprise, surprise, the list of names in contention for the part is still the same as it has been for the past little while: Noomi Rapace, Carey Mulligan, Abbie Cornish and Natalie Portman.
However, it appears one more name, and a pretty obvious one, is now in the mix. Olivia Wilde, riding in a wave of advance buzz, mostly from geeks going gaga over her form-fitting getup in "Tron: Legacy," is apparently another name being bandied about to kill some aliens. No word on what has happened to Anne Hathaway who was rumored last week. She didn't seem like a strong choice for the part, and we'd imagine that she had a meeting and then was quietly taken off the list. No mention of Gemma Arterton either, who was an early name linked to the project. Now comes the hard part of choosing somebody and while Scott has a favorite, 20th Century Fox is expected to be "heavily involved" in the final choice.
It's hardly a shocker that Scott wants Rapace for the part. While a role in the upcoming "Sherlock Homes 2," an Oscar campaign underway for her work in "The Girl With Dragon Tattoo" and a fresh and eager young face in Hollywood, it seems everyone wants to work with her. But apparently Rapace's command of English might be a problem. Looking over the candidates as a whole, it's clear that neither the director nor the studio are too concerned with landing a big name and other than Portman, these aren't actresses known to mainstream crowds. But that's not really an issue, since the marketing and allure of the 'Alien' films have also been on the creatures not the actors.
All that said, the film was last reported to have a budget in the $160 million range (though Fox would like to bring it down a bit) so you can bet the decision is going to be a very tough one. The project has a script from "Lost" scribe Damon Lindelof who was brought on to rewrite Jon Spaihts' draft in July, and everyone is quite pleased with the result. The film is gearing up to be a PG-13 affair which is no surprise since Fox will want to recoup their budget and make some money on this. No official production plans have been unveiled but it's a safe bet everyone involved wants this in front of cameras soon as possible.