With Prometheus, this film has a franchise history going back to 1979, and all the previous films can be seen on DVD literally by anyone, regardless of their age. A per this wiki page on the Alien (franchise), it lists the four predecessors (Alien, Aliens, Alien 3, Alien Resurrection). And a quick IMDB review of all four films show that they received R ratings too. So it should come as no surprise that Prometheus would have the same fate. However, due to the delicate financial investment in Prometheus, since it's been at least 15 years since the last true Alien-esque film has been made (not including PG-13 popcorn monster showdown fare 'Alien vs Predator'), Fox wants to recoup as much money as possible from Prometheus, and the more audience friendly the rating is (ie. PG-13), the more money it can earn. But an R-rating limits who can see Prometheus, and that's not neccessarily a bad thing. I don't think that kids should see any of these films until they are of age, and due to the complex nature of space travel, and horrible space creatures, excruciatingly painful deaths of humans, etc... this is not family fare! And all of this is before partial nudity, blood and gore spillage, and understandable harsh/foul language and added to the sci-fi mixature.
|Michael Fassbender as android David.|
The article at Indiewire poses several interesting questions and I try to answer here instead of posting my comment over there.:
Can the movie bring in the business it needs to make this endeavor profitable? The traditional print/tv and social media marketing of Prometheus has been outstanding. It has provoked a lot of interest and it reminds people of what they haven't seen for a long time. Films that are R-rated should not be looked down upon, this type of film is for adults, and they are the ones who a more knowledgeable about the Alien franchise. They will go see this film and pay to see it in one of four ways: the regular 2D, 3D, IMAX, IMAX 3D. The latter two versions will really help the box office of Prometheus!
Can Fox break the movie out of the geek box and make it appealing to mainstream audiences? This film's legacy, established by the previous four films, has already made it mainstream. Mainstream audiences should not be thought of in terms of people under 15, those are children! Adult audiences of 17 and over will want to see Prometheus because it will be the hottest Sci-fi film of the summer and provide an alternative type of film going experience when comedies, rom-coms, superheroes, and spy films are the standard.
They've got one month left to go on the marketing campaign to make it happen. We suggest a campaign for Taco Bell led by Michael Fassbender's David. - While I agree with more use of Michael as David8, the internet viral ads were brilliant, perhaps something cool with Verizon and smartphone apps would be more appropriate than a fast food advert.
So with that, are you pleased with the R-rating for Prometheus? Read more fan comments at Awards Daily.