‘Alien: Covenant’ Scores China Release Date, Cuts Expected

20th Century Fox’s Alien: Covenant has scraped its way into the Chinese market scoring a Friday, June 16, release date — a month after it hits screens in North America.

Director Ridley Scott announced the release date in a video message posted on Chinese social media on Monday.

“Hello China, I’m Ridley Scott. I have exciting news to share with all of you. Alien: Covenant will land in China on the big screen on June the 16th. Hope you enjoy the film,” the director said.

It was originally set to be released in North America on August 4, 2017, before being moved up by 20th Century Fox.

Chinese fans of the sci-fi horror franchise have been expecting the film to arrive in China, especially since its official Weibo account has been pushing out marketing material since late January.

The announcement puts to rest speculation that censors had barred the film from entering the Chinese market – though it’s highly likely some of the film’s more violent frames have been cut. The film is rated R in North America for sci-fi violence, bloody images, language and some sexual scenes or nudity.

Alien Covenant is coming out June 16. The next thing to watch is how much of it will be cut,” wrote one Weibo user. “Will it be the production company who makes the cuts or will it be SAPPRFT (the State Administration of Press and Publications, Radio, Film, and Television). Will they do a rough job or will they use fine scissors?”

Alien: Covenant is the sixth film in the popular science fiction film franchise, but is only the second to hit Chinese screens after 2012’s Prometheus, which earned RMB 220 million (US$31.8 million).