'Prometheus' Writer Damon Lindelof on Rumored Sequel 'Paradise' and Whether He's the Man to Write It
The former "Lost" producer observes, "We have to be very careful about what we’re saving for later -– because there might not be a later."
Although expectations are high for Ridley Scott’s Prometheus, screenwriter and executive producer Damon Lindelof tells The Hollywood Reporter that a sequel is far from a foregone conclusion.
The Lost writer and producer said he and Scott had serious conversations about what would and wouldn’t go into Fox's Prometheus, which opens June 8 in North America.
“Ridley was very interested in talking about, ‘What are the answers to the questions that Prometheus is posing that are not necessarily definitively spelled out in the body of Prometheus?’ ” Lindelof says.
“I said to him, we should be prepared for people to feel frustrated if we’re going to be withholding, so we have to be very careful about what we’re saving for later," he continues. "Because it’s not a foregone conclusion that there are going to be sequels, and so if there isn’t a sequel, just be comfortable with what we gave them in this movie."
Lindelof says that his experience on the acclaimed but decidedly polarizing Lost attuned him to the opportunities -- and responsibilities -- of creating a mythology for Prometheus that audiences will care about.
“The audience is given a little more information than the characters in the movie have,” he explains. “And it’s our hope that fires the imagination up enough for them to say, ‘I might want to see Prometheus again’ or ‘I definitely want to see where this movie takes me.’ Because this movie has two children: One of these children grows up to be Alien, but the other child is going to grow up, and God knows what happens to them. And that’s what the sequel to Prometheus would be.”
When Scott originally launched the project with screenwriter Jon Spaihts, the director suggested that the title be Paradise, heralding the word’s “spooky connotations.”
After Lindelof took over the reins on the script, the title changed to Prometheus, though rumors linger that Scott might revive Paradise for a sequel.
“That’s only a title that was being tossed around at various stages in the development,” Lindelof says. “He did need to know what the answers to some of these questions are in Prometheus, just to shoot Prometheus. [But] Ridley was very confident and assured in saying, ‘I’m very comfortable with exactly what Prometheus is providing.’ ”
Lindelof’s next project is 1952, an epic tentpole written for Disney to be directed by Brad Bird that, like its predecessors, is shrouded in secrecy. But he admits that he’d be tempted to come back to write a sequel, even if he acknowledges that the fledgling series might benefit from some new blood the next time around.
“Right now my focus is doing this movie for Disney, and then I obviously want to do another television show, but if Ridley wants me to be involved in something, that would be hard to say no to,” he says. “At the same time, I do feel like the movie might benefit from a fresh voice or a fresh take or a fresh thought. Sometimes the baton should be passed, if that’s what the story demands.
“I had [Prometheus] for the period of time that I was running the race, and if that story continues, it could actually benefit going into someone else’s able hand," Lindelof adds. "Although, I feel like some of the iceberg below the water for any potential future movies in that storyline has already been constructed based on conversations that Ridley and I had about it.”