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Ridley Scott to film new Alien movie in Sydney

Ridley Scott will film his Prometheus follow-up Alien: Covenant at Fox Studios Australia in Sydney, and on location elsewhere in New South Wales.   

Like Prometheus (pictured), Alien: Covenant will be set before the events of Scott’s seminal 1979 sci-fi horror Alien.

The new film – previously referred to briefly as Alien: Paradise Lost – is expected to hire around 600 local cast and crew, and will spend AU$60m in Australia, with much of the expenditure earmarked for extensive visual effects work.

Production will be supported with a filming incentive package including a one-off payment as a top-up, a system now routinely used to attract the biggest Hollywood productions to Australian filming locations.

Australia offers a 16.5% Location Offset as part of its filming incentive options, but the one-off payment will mean Alien: Covenant will effectively get incentive support closer to 30% of local expenditure.

The Australian production industry has long called for a formal increase to the Location Offset. Scott himself supports general increases and may have filmed his sci-fi hit The Martian in Australia if the finances had been more agreeable. In the end, The Martian was based in Budapest.

Scott has suggested boosted Australian filming incentives could help secure two more planned Alien prequels for the country, films which will eventually connect the franchise’s story back to the original 1979 movie.

Marvel is also preparing to bring Thor: Ragnarok to Australia and will shoot the entire film in Queensland with a production base at Village Roadshow Studios. Disney, Marvel’s parent company, filmed Pirates of the Caribbean 5 in Queensland earlier this year.

For more on filming in Australia, see our production guide.


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