James Caan and Mandy Patinkin in Alien Nation

Alien Nation, the film that taught late-’80s moviegoers that aliens who look like Mandy Patinkin wearing a bald cap are people, too, is being remade. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Twentieth Century Fox is developing another version of the 1988 science fiction drama, following the template set by the studio’s successful reinvention of the Planet Of The Apes series.

Alien Nation is the story of a near future in which humans and a recently arrived alien race are forced to coexist, with the humans keeping the new residents segregated and depriving them of basic rights. Luckily, the aliens look an awful lot like humans with some questionable makeup choices, so it’s not to hard for alien-phobic cop James Caan to grow to respect his new alien partner, in an overt metaphor for American audiences’ willingness to embrace somewhat ridiculous-looking sci-fi dramas. Fox has hired Iron Man writers Art Marcum and Matt Holloway to pen the screenplay, though no producer is attached to the project as of yet.


As with all new reboots of existing properties, this one will be an origin story, recounting how and why the aliens first come to Earth. Hopefully that means all the aliens will be little kids, and we can really Phantom Menace the whole thing.