When faced with the option of directing one or other of the follow-ups to two of his biggest franchises – Alien: Covenant and Blade Runner 2049 – Ridley Scott opted to helm the former.

While neither were quite the box office hits that were hoped for – Alien Covenant made $240.7 million off a $97 million budget while Blade Runner 2049 made $240 million off a budget of $150–185 million – at least the latter proved popular with critics.

The underwhelming performance of Alien Covenant, considering that it comes after another disappointment in 2012’s Prometheus, has now left the future of the series in doubt, in spite of Scott (who also directed Prometheus) previously teasing that there would be at least two sequels that would connect the storyline with the original Alien.

In a new round table interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Scott suggested that it’s nearly time up for the alien. "It was a crossfire of too much business”, he said of his decision to make Covenant rather than Blade Runner, as well as commenting on his extensive work in producing. “I'm doing a lot of TV and films, there are six films going out this year”.

“I figured it was a good piece of business to follow through Prometheus, which, from ground zero, had good lift-off. So we went to Covenant to perpetuate the idea and [revive] the franchise of the Alien.”

He conceded that “I think the beast has almost run out, personally”.