The long in development Alien Nation remake has taken a big leap towards production as 20th Century Fox is negotiating with Jeff Nichols to write and direct the film.
Deadline is reporting that the director of Mud, Take Shelter, Midnight Special and the forthcoming Loving will be helming the remake of the 1988 sci-fi buddy cop movie about a racist cop partnered with an alien to investigate a series of murders in Los Angeles.
If you are thinking that this project might be beneath a writer/director of Nichols talents, then you probably have forgotten a lot about the original Alien Nation. While on the surface the film was a take on the buddy cop genre that was popular at the time, the film had layers that dealt with racism and xenophobia. The aliens, called “Newcomers,” were essentially refugees who entered the country illegally and tried to assimilate into a society that hated them. Sadly, that allegory plays just as well today as it did almost 30 years ago and plays well into themes Nichols uses in his films.
No word on casting, although Deadline employs some wishful thinking that Nichols’ frequent collaborator Michael Shannon could be brought on board.
More on this as the production goes forward.