Judging from the trailer we saw last month, Ridley Scott’s upcoming Alien: Covenant is going to be a gory return to the franchise’s horror roots — and audiences will be able to step into its world with a new virtual reality experience, as well. 20th Century Fox has announced it is developing a VR experiences based around the film, following the pattern it established with its experience for Ridley Scott’s last film, The Martian.
To be directed by David Karlak, the project will be a collaboration between Scott’s RSA Films, the virtual reality production house MPC VR, and the Fox Innovation Lab — Twentieth Century Fox’s in-house VR and immersive experience division. Described as a “dread-inducing journey into the depths of the Alien universe,” the project will be released this year, though further details on platforms and distribution strategy haven’t been announced as of yet.
The Alien franchise itself has long been seen as an opportunity for VR experiences, thanks in no small part to an early VR demo of Alien Isolation. While that iteration of the game never formally shipped, reactions to the demo were overwhelmingly positive. Combined with a new industry focus on location-based VR — Fox also brought a VR experience based on its Assassin’s Creed film to movie theater lobbies last month — the opportunity from the studio’s perspective is obvious, potentially leading to a scenario where audiences can head to their local theater to watch Scott’s latest prequel, and then check out its VR counterpart moments after the credits roll.
Alien: Covenant will be released in theaters on May 19th, 2017. The VR experience will arrive sometime this year.