Cancelled Movies. Wiki

The Alien was an unproduced Indian-American science fiction film in development in the late 1960s which was eventually cancelled. It was to be directed by Indian filmmaker Satyajit Ray and co-produced by Columbia Pictures. The script was written by Ray in 1967, loosely based on Bankubabur Bandhu (Banku Babu's Friend or Mr. Banku's Friend), a Bengali science fiction story he had written in 1962 for Sandesh, the Ray family magazine, which gained popularity among Bengalis in the early 1960s.


The plot revolves around a spaceship that lands in a pond in rural Bengal. The villagers begin worshiping it as a temple risen from the depths of the earth. The alien, known as "Mr Ang", establishes contact with a young village boy named Haba (meaning "Dumb" in Bengali) through dreams and also plays a number of pranks on the village community in the course of its short stay on planet Earth. The plot contains the ebullient presence of an Indian businessman, a journalist from Calcutta and an American engineer.

Ray's biographer W. Andrew Robinson describes one particular scene from the screenplay as follows: "In a series of fantastically quick, short steps over the lotus leaves, the Alien reaches the shore of the pond. He looks down at the grass, examines the blade and is off hopping into the bamboo grove. There the Alien sees a small plant. His eyes light up with a yellow light. He passes his hand over the plant, and flowers come out. A thin, soft high-pitched laugh shows the Alien is pleased."


The Alien had Columbia Pictures as producer for this planned US–India co-production, and Peter Sellers and Marlon Brando acting in lead roles. However, Ray was surprised to find that the script he had written had already been copyrighted and the fee appropriated by Michael Wilson, a Colombo-based producer who acted as Ray's representative in Hollywood. Wilson had copyrighted the script as co-writer, despite not being involved in any way in its creation. Marlon Brando later dropped out of the project and though an attempt was made to bring James Coburn in his place, Ray became disillusioned and returned to Calcutta. Columbia expressed interest in reviving the project several times in the 1970s and 1980s but nothing came of it.

Why It Was Cancelled[]



  • E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial had a few nods to the earlier script along with two other films, Koi...Mil Gaya & the story Bankubabur Bandhu.