As broken by Deadline, Hawley’s Alien series has cast Olyphant as Kirsh, a “synth who acts as a mentor and trainer” for Wendy (Sydney Chandler). Wendy herself is a “hybrid, a meta-human who has the brain and consciousness of a child but the body of an adult.” Additional details regarding Olyphant’s character are being kept under wraps for the time being.
Olyphant first rose to prominence thanks to his supporting roles in films like Scream 2 (1997) and Go (1999). He later gained further recognition for his leading roles in television series like FX’s Justified (2010-2015) and Netflix’s Santa Clarita Diet (2017-2019). More recently, Olyphant has made a name for himself in the sci-fi sphere, portraying Cobb Vanth in the second season of Disney+’s live-action Star Wars series The Mandalorian and its spin-off limited series The Book of Boba Fett. He also previously worked with Hawley on FX’s Fargo.
In addition to Chandler as Wendy and Olyphant as Kirsh, FX’s Alien stars Alex Lawther as CJ, Samuel Blenkin as Boy Kavalier, Essie Davis as Dame Silvia, Adarsh Gourav as Slightly, and Kit Young as Tootles.
FX’s Alien is targeting a 2025 premiere
In December 2020, The Walt Disney Company revealed that 20th Television was developing a live-action Alien series for FX, with Hawley attached as showrunner. Disney initially announced the series as part of the now-defunct FX on Hulu banner.
Hawley’s series serves as a prequel to Ridley Scott’s original Alien film from 1979. It takes place on Earth in the late 21st century. Hawley writes and directs the show, with Scott attached as an executive producer. Production was supposed to get underway in March 2022. However, shooting was postponed due to continued concerns regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Cameras finally started rolling in July 2023.
Production on Alien was unaffected by the Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike, as all the show’s scripts had been completed prior to May 2, 2023. Furthermore, since the series’ British actors were working under an Equity contract, filming was able to proceed during the early goings of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA) strike. Production began in Thailand in July, albeit without American lead Chandler. That said, the strike ultimately did force Alien to halt shooting in August.
Now that both strikes are over, Hawley recently confirmed to Deadline that production would resume in Thailand in early 2024. He also told TheWrap that the series is currently on track to premiere during the first half of 2025.