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FILMEDGE PREVIEWS RIDLEY SCOTT'S 
PROMETHEUS
A THRILLING NEW MYTHOLOGY EXPLORING THE ORIGINS OF MANKIND COMING JUNE 8, 2012


VIRAL CAMPAIGN

UPDATED 3.21.2012 — New website pages and cracked codes revealing new still images in the latest viral campaign news:

With viral game players and code breakers working feverishly online, a new hidden page was discovered at the Project Prometheus site — http://www.projectprometheus.com/eridu/. This hidden directory name arose from several obscure clues scattered in the ARG (a somewhat garbled reference to "eridu" in the French portion of the **WEYLAND phone message) and screen grabs from the PROMETHEUS trailer as seen in the overlapping star map archeological clues featuring "eridu" as well. The gang at unFiction and elsewhere reached the same conclusion on entering the correct password for database access on the new page: 'tell abu shahrain' which is the modern day name for Eridu, an ancient Sumerian city of Mesopotamia, today located in Iraq. The name Eridu itself may play a significant or at least symbolic role in the story of PROMETHEUS, as it loosely translates to "mighty place" or "guidance place" and might well have been the location of the Tower of Babel.  All these aspects point to Eridu being a site of importance and a historic focal point for the blending of different beings or cultures — a theme quite in line with Ridley Scott's tale exploring the origins (possibly extraterrestrial) of mankind. Entering "tell abu shahrain" in lower case as the password revealed this new hi-res still photo from the film (aka the 'tas jpg' — tas being the abbreviation of the "tell abu shahrain" password).

Somewhat ironically, this new hidden page's mystery got solved before the older existing stumper about an earlier hidden directory page on the PP site — http://www.projectprometheus.com/245409/. The unFiction players wrestled with this for days until various online clues and Twitter comments alluded to the Cosmic Call 2, an interstellar radio message sent from Earth in 2003 to various nearby star systems including those in the Orion constellation, which have a Henry Draper star catalogue designation HD 245409, matching the number of the hidden URL directory on the PP site exactly. This soon led to the discovery of the correct password for database access on the page: "DDM2DDM2DDM2AMAMAMBIGBIGBIGBMESMPP," which is an abbreviate sequence of the messages sent to stars in Cosmic Call 2. Yet this solution met with some criticism by ARG players and fans since the comma mark is NOT part of the message sequence, but rather only appears in the Wikipedia entry on the topic as part of the entry's sentence grammar. This solution had been discussed and entered without the comma earlier in solution attempts with failed results, of course, frustrating many players who had solved the mystery correctly but remained locked out of the page due to the comma. Viral detectives blamed this apparent error on the PMs (puppet masters) of PROMETHEUS' viral campaign, as other minor viral site content errors (extraneous capitalization of periodic element names, etc.) have been corrected "live" online while players were combing through the game.  In the end, entering the correct password yielded 'DDM2 jpg', a second still photo from the film (actually intended to be the first photo revealed but the hidden page clues were solved out of order).

Click to view full-size 'tas.jpg' still photo from PROMETHEUS Click to view full-size 'DDM2.jpg' still photo from PROMETHEUS

But that wasn't the end of PROMETHEUS viral game revelations today: fans and players who registered to be Weyland Industries investors received an email alerting them to a site update opening new sections for their (fictional) investors: https://www.weylandindustries.com/#/information. Keeping within the future-verse of Weyland's 2023-era corporate activity, this complex page blitzes readers and "investors" with massive amounts of data and company information spread across line charts, graphic data modules and symbolic keys to explain Weyland's android innovations and human-interface goals. Two data graphics — Invest In Your Future and Financial Highlights — are offered for downloading by users to study, though there are plenty of interactive links embedded in the online version of these modules that you'll want to explore. ARG players are already combing through Weyland's charts of Primary Resource Keys and Earth Resource Breakdown where no doubt future viral game clues are hiding right before their eyes. Also there may be actual story clues from PROMETHEUS hidden on these pages too, as fans have already noted that 0% of David model androids (actor Michael Fassbender will play a new David 8 version) are employed in Weyland's security companies — a curious fact that ALIEN fans may well cross reference back (forward?) to Ash's subversive antics in Ridley Scott's 1979 film as a lingering fault in Weyland-made droids.

The viral game's definitely afoot for PROMETHEUS with some bumpy but very intriguing results already. Stay tuned to FilmEdge for more ARG developments as they happen.

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UPDATED 3.17.2012 —

RIDLEY SCOTT/DAMON LINDELOF LIVE CHAT RECAP: While the live chat session from the AMC screening was much shorter than the 45 minutes scheduled, a fair amount of information resulted from the filmmakers' Q&A session.

Some quick facts include confirmation that events in PROMETHEUS occur around the year 2085, nearly 50 years after the era in which the recent viral video by Weyland Industries CEO Peter Weyland (played by actor Guy Pearce). Scott also confirmed, with some hesitation, that Weyland would appear in the film in some capacity as an older man — but the director was deliberately cagey about how he answered this in order to preserve some plot secrets.

Scott described Charlize Theron's character as "a company man" representing the interests of Weyland Industries who is supporting the Prometheus' ships expedition. In contrast, Noomi Rapace's character is an "anthropologist/neo-scientist who has theories about evolution and how we [humans] came about as a race." This seems to sow the seeds for the crossed-purpose conflicts witnessed in his plot for ALIEN, and perhaps implies that Weyland Industries' motives and goals established in PROMETHEUS remain somewhat consistent if evolved by the era of ALIEN's high-conflict drama.

The director also responded with some satisfaction that his use of 3D is not any type of gimmick to promote PROMETHEUS, but rather a natural extension of how we see everyday even if, as Scott maintains, our brains tend to flatten our 3D perspective into 2D to dimish the effect. At any rate, the highly visual Scott clarified that he shot the film in 3D, that it is no post-production conversion to the format, and that "it works like a son-of-a-bitch" with an added smile.

Perhaps most revealing, or at least promising, was the answers prompted by an audience question about how the myth of Prometheus and talks of scientific understanding of evolution might relate to questions of God in the story. Lindelof congratulated the questioner on his insightful connections, and Scott related his answer to discussions with scientists and mathematicians who ask the cutting-edge, really big questions today and often ponder the role of God in attempting to formulate solutions to these mind-boggling explorations of theory and science. Lindelof concluded by saying that if they did their jobs right in this film, it should prompt an audience reaction asking "Is there any scientific discovery that could be made in my lifetime that would stop me believing in God?  It's a provocative question and we certainly don't have the answer, but the movie is asking that question."

As FilmEdge and others have suspected and predicted during the film's production, Ridley Scott is indeed formulating his new story for PROMETHEUS around a kernel of profound, epically scaled questions about the human race, our origins and perhaps what events or beings prompted our own evolution as a species. It's plain to see that Scott, Lindelof and Fox have put a great deal of careful thought into the publicity campaign for PROMETHEUS — just as much as the filmmakers put into creating this ALIEN-universe prequel. This is going to be a fascinating journey to the film's theatrical release this summer.

[EARLIER]

An abundance of viral and publicity developments rolled out today for Ridley Scott's PROMETHEUS:

At 4pm PT/7pm ET, director Ridley Scott and co-screenwriter Damon Lindelof will debut the full PROMETHEUS trailer at a Q&A session at AMC's Downtown Disney event that fans can also watch live streaming online thanks to AMC, Twitter and Facebook.  Watch the live chat repeat on FilmEdge.

Earlier at this weekend's WonderCon event in Anaheim, California, Scott and Damon Lindelof spoke to the WonderCon crowd at Fox's panel promoting PROMETHEUS and revealing some exclusive footage. Attending fans were also given a futuristic Weyland Industries business card with the company URL and a mobile phone number code: **WEYLAND. Dial the numbers for that code and Weyland will send you a text message with a URL to view a new viral video along with various advertisements for Weyland products which are rather nifty. The viral video reveals the genesis of Michael Fassbender's character for the film and his connection to Weyland Industries' newest innovations.

Watch live streaming video from prometheus at livestream.com

Earlier at this weekend's WonderCon event in Anaheim, California, Scott and Damon Lindelof spoke to the WonderCon crowd at Fox's panel promoting PROMETHEUS and revealing some exclusive footage. Attending fans were also given a futuristic Weyland Industries business card with the company URL and a mobile phone number code: **WEYLAND. Dial the numbers for that code and Weyland will send you a text message with a URL to view a new viral video along with various advertisements for Weyland products which are rather nifty. The viral video reveals the genesis of Michael Fassbender's character for the film and his connection to Weyland Industries' newest innovations.

More viral campaign advancements today in the form of a new Weyland website: Project Prometheus. Also a one-minute IMAX trailer for PROMETHEUS was revealed and has made its way to YouTube.

This morning Yahoo UK began their live online chat session with stars Michael Fassbender and Charlize Theron who answered fan questions and discussed aspects of the arduous filming demands, details about their characters and hints about what audiences will see in the final film this June.

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Click to view hi-res image from PROMETHEUSUPDATED 3.07.2012 — Today yielded a somewhat mysterious advance in the viral campaign for Ridley Scott's PROMETHEUS: an ARG enthusiast and cryptologist Steve Kidd (@MOVIELORD101 on your Twitter dial) somehow deciphered a code on the Weyland Industries viral site which pointed to a hidden photo on the domain. We still have no clue exactly which hidden code he deciphered on the page nor how he discovered it, but the solution results in this URL on the Weyland site. Fans will recognize this hi-res photo as a still from a scene that appeared in the PROMETHEUS Trailer #1: one of the astronauts standing inside the presumed holographic galaxy map technology inside the Space Jockey species' ship, as FilmEdge speculated last December.

Invest in the future at Weyland Industries as part of the PROMETHEUS viral campaign

UPDATED 3.05.2012 — The viral campaign for Ridley Scott's PROMETHEUS took another step forward at the official Weyland Industries website today. Hinted at when the viral site first debuted last week, the future (and fictitious) corporation announced it's now seeking investors to fulfill Peter Weyland's technological ambitions. A data module featuring a wicked cool photo of a human fingerprint with the Weyland logo at the center states:

Weyland engineers have been working around the clock to bring you the newest, most advanced addition to the Weyland family. Stay tuned for a special announcement.

Fans who want to "invest" in the viral ARG for PROMETHEUS may register their name and email contact on the site as prospective Weyland Industries supporters. FilmEdge has registered and a few hours later we got a confirmation/thanks email from 20th Century Fox stating our account has been created. Nothing from in-game yet, but the ARG response may not be ready to send immediately so be patient. View Peter Weyland's speech as the opening of the viral campaign on our Video page.


VIRAL VIDEO — TED 2023

UPDATED 2.28.2012 — The viral campaign for Ridley Scott's PROMETHEUS has kicked off with the reveal of an official Weyland Industries website that features a video from the future: corporation founder and technical futurist, Peter Weyland, speaks to a stadium audience at a TED conference in the year 2023.  Weyland (as portrayed by PROMETHEUS cast member Guy Pearce) sets up the mythological and technological parallel between humanity's mastery of fire to the cutting edge advancements of the early 21st century. He also, rather brazenly, exposes his own god complex while touting his plans to "change the world" via his unlimited ambition. FilmEdge's analysis follows the video below:

At first viewing, Ridley Scott fans may find it tough not to flash back to the director's iconic 1984 ad for Apple's Macintosh computer in its similar style and color palette as Pearce's voice echoes across the stadium. While not a glimpse into a dictatorial dystopia of the future, Weyland's TED speech does possess undercurrents of foreboding as much as it trumpets his company's evolutionary advancements in robotic technology. Both Weyland and Prometheus are rule-breakers, willing to steal the forbidden knowledge of the gods and gift them to humanity with the best intentions. But such gifts are always double-edged with both promise and danger, enlightenment burdened with a sometimes terrible responsibility in wielding it. This duplicity fits neatly into the marketing taglines for PROMETHEUS which warn that a search for humanity's beginning could be its end, as Ridley Scott's ALIEN-universe prequel is poised to tell a spacefaring tale of Pandora's Box as astronauts learn an astonishing secret about our origins that may have been better kept unknown.

This TED 2023 video was conceived by PROMETHEUS helmer Ridley Scott and writer Damon Lindelof and directed by Luke Scott (Ridley's son) as a viral marketing bridge between our near future reality and the distant future setting of the feature film. In a Q&A interview with Lindelof (which FilmEdge recommends highly), setting this video in the creatively intellectual context of TED perfectly serves the larger ideas within PROMETHEUS. Even if Peter Weyland doesn't appear in Scott's film coming to theaters this June, this viral video successfully plants the seeds of creative hubris and corporate greed in Weyland Corp which powers the film's plot and, as franchise fans know well, lays the groundwork for Weyland-Yutani's craven acts of inhuman profiteering at humanity's expense seen in ALIEN and its Ridley-free sequels set far beyond the time of PROMETHEUS. This is a very promising start to what could be a fascinating viral marketing campaign under Ridley Scott's creative influence and we look forward to seeing more as the Weyland Industries website expands into this summer.

Watch and download Peter Weyland's speech in more QuickTime high-definition formats at the TED 2023 blog.


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PROMETHEUS opens in theaters June 8, 2012