Ridley Scott On PROMETHEUS Themes, Title, Characters & More
The director discusses the themes and characters in his upcoming science fiction epic Prometheus, while also talking about what the title of the film means to him and working with practical effects.
Talking with SMH, Sir Ridley Scott discusses his upcoming sci-fi epic Prometheus. He talks about the themes of life's beginning in the film, as well as how the characters in the movie tackle them. Scott also talks about working largely with practical effects (as opposed to all-digital, a la James Cameron's Avatar); concerning the title, Scott summed up the story saying "Don't [frick] around with gods". For much more from Scott, click the link below. Many thanks to nailbiter111 for the heads up.
You've talked about the idea of these post-apocalyptic films having been done to death. Is Prometheus your way of going in the opposite direction and wondering about the beginning of life?
It is, and I’ve got to check [for spoilers] very carefully here, but it is about the beginning of life and ’what if’. It’s a giant ’what if'. Has this ball that we’re sitting on right now been around here for three billion years or one billion? Either way, it’s a long [frick]ing time. It’s only our kind of arrogance that says ”We’re the first ones.”
Are we the first hominids? I really, really, really doubt it. In recent memory or legend we keep talking about wonderful, weird things such as Atlantis – what is that? Where does that come from? Is that real, was it real, is it a memory, did it exist? And if that did exist, did it exist three quarters of a billion years ago? There’d be nothing left now. How was that created and who was it?
How do the characters in Prometheus tackle these themes?
They have a different thesis about – what we were first talking about – being pre-visited, which is an old idea. But I think it comes out of a good place because it’s an entirely good question. Is there a God or is there not a God? Are we a petri dish here or not, and if we were a petri dish, of whom? What was the force, what is the entity that we can’t possibly even fathom, because it’s something we haven’t crossed that line yet?
James Cameron had a lot of success going all-digital with Avatar, but Prometheus will be largely practical. Do you think practical is better?
No, I think Jim definitely raised the mark both with what he did and the story, and then how he pulled it off – God, he’s got patience, four and a half years – but I wasn’t even going to get into that area, and I don’t think Fox were either. Besides, what I’ve got is an expected engine. It’s not entirely what you expect, but I think what I’m saying is going to be fairly scary, whereas Jim’s is not that kind of film. No, that just evolved. The actual truth is, if you know what you’re doing it’s actually cheaper. Digital effects are not cheaper. We’ve done this film for a really good price.
What does the title mean for you?
The story of Prometheus is the idea that if you’re given a gift from the gods, do not abuse it and do not think you can compete. He stole fire and they had his entrails torn out everyday in perpetuity by an eagle as a punishment. Every night they'd repair and then the eagle would come back in the morning and rip his liver and his kidneys out again. It’s perpetual purgatory. Basically, don’t [frick] around with gods.
Starring Noomi Rapace, Michael Fassbender, Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce, Idris Elba and Logan Marshall-Green, Prometheus is set to hit theatres on June 8th, later this year.
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