Jon Spaihts' Original 'Prometheus' Script: Better Than The Film?
What if Prometheus had actually answered questions and had been more of a direct sequel to Ridley Scott's Alien films, instead of a maddeningly ambiguous but thought-provoking spin-off vaguely connected to the Alien universe? Screenwriter Jon Spaihts' original Prometheus script, confirmed to be legit by Spaihts himself, has surfaced online revealing what his facehugger-laden version might have looked like.
As Spaihts teased to Empire last month, his Prometheus (titled Alien: Engineers) featured facehuggers and chestbursters, among other more obvious links to the Alien films. (One word to get your geek pulse racing: Ultramorphs.)
Spaihts' Prometheus script has found its way online at Scribd.com, and while it ultimately became a different movie, the core story is mostly the same. For starters, the ship? It's called The Magellan. And while the key players are present and reasonably similar in Spaihts' version (scientist-lovers Watts and Holloway, Peter Weyland as a "Warren Buffet type," David the creepy android, Meredith Vickers as a 45-year-old woman and not an earthbound goddess who looks like Charlize Theron) certain reveals and plot threads are very different from what subsequent writer Damon Lindelof became involved.
One major scene that went through a transformation is Holloway's fate, which I'll detail here since Spaihts himself spilled the beans to Empire. Rather than being poisoned with black goo by David, Holloway meets his end when, after being facehugged in the pyramid, a chestburster rips him open... mid-coitus.
It's a fascinating read alone just to see which of Spaihts' ideas stuck and which Scott and Damon Lindelof took in different directions, and it's always tempting to label what could have been as better than what actually made it to the screen. But some of the changes made between this version to the theatrical cut are smart ones; here, for instance, David is more of a pronounced villain saddled with even more expository dialogue — and what fun would it have been to really know what he said to the Engineer?
Scott's Prometheus may leave us with too many unanswered questions, but I'd venture to say this early script perhaps explained too much. It's still viewable here and below for the time being; chime in and tell us if you'd have rather seen this version make it to the big screen instead.