I asked a question here on StackExchange about whether Meredith Vickers is an android or human in Prometheus, the new movie. Most of the answers cited evidence from the movie supporting their answer one way or another.

In Prometheus, is Meredith Vickers a human or android?

One person cited evidence from an interview with Ridley Scott. In the interview, RS reportedly states that Vickers is definitely human. I informed the person that evidence outside of the work (the move) is completely irrelevant. He disagreed.

Isn't it almost universally understood and agreed upon that a creator's interpretation of a novel, movie, song, or other work, is just another interpretation? What Ridley Scott says about Vickers' humanness might give me insight, but it's not evidence.

My question is whether evidence such as interviews, interpretations, or opinions, provided by creators or actors regarding any work should have any value on the interpretation of the source?

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    I think if it is never explicitly stated, any reasonable analysis on a title is valid. If its a clarification in an interview from the creator of the work, then that, in the end, is the definitive answer. If Stan Lee came out and said "No hero can beat Hulk" then that is how the continuity is and we would all have to accept that.
    – Tablemaker
    Jun 14, 2012 at 17:10
  • ... and then a character beats Hulk. What then?
    – Evik James
    Jun 14, 2012 at 17:36
  • At that point, if Stan Lee wrote that peice where a character beats Hulk, it nullifies his previous statement. Followed by the uproar of many fans who were fans of the unbeatable Hulk. If he then comes out in an interview and says "Hulk was beaten because it was a Hulk clone. Then the previous statement is still true due to the clone not being The Hulk. Essentially, the very essence of ret-conning stories.
    – Tablemaker
    Jun 14, 2012 at 17:43
  • Interesting. So, what a creator says is definitive up until the point it's completely wrong?
    – Evik James
    Jun 14, 2012 at 18:06
  • Wouldn't be the first time any piece of work has been ret-conned. IMO, the creator is definitive, even if they contradict themself. Unless of course they give the creation to someone else. Then you get reboots which add all kinds of happy complexity :D
    – Tablemaker
    Jun 14, 2012 at 18:07
  • Though, that's not to stop anyone from coming up with a great theory. As long as it makes sense.
    – Tablemaker
    Jun 14, 2012 at 18:09
  • I just read the wikipedia article on retroactive continuity. There is no mention of what happens outside a work, only what happens within a work. Interviews are outside a work. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Retroactive_continuity
    – Evik James
    Jun 14, 2012 at 18:12
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    @EvikJames See also: Canon
    – user209
    Jun 14, 2012 at 18:34
  • It's a Ridley Scott film. All of his films have many unexplained elements to them. That is part of his style.
    – Reactgular
    Jun 15, 2012 at 14:58

2 Answers 2


IMHO, yes. Usually when a creator creates something they have an image that they intend to project to others. Whether we interpret their work the same way doesn't change what their intentions were. Sometimes, though, creations have a way of creating a mind of their own and becoming something more than those intentions.

So, whether or not we agree with what the creator states their intentions were, it is always worth considering their opinions on the matter. You never know, it may open up a completely different world of meaning that what you had in mind.

Additional info:

In the end, it's the asker that decides on what to accept as their answer, that's their right. As a community, though, we have the right to upvote what we believe to be the most accurate answer. What the community upvotes and what the asker accepts as the answer don't have to be the same answer.

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    The TV Tropes page on Word of God covers a variety of opinions on the subject.
    – user209
    Jun 14, 2012 at 16:55

Like DForck42 I believe that the creator should always be considered the ultimate authority when asking questions about interpretation or character back story. Most people would agree with this including in the much debated Star Wars Universe which was expanded by people after the original Trilogy was created. When George Lucas created the Prequel Trilogy he forced those writers to rewrite their stories to match his new continuity. The same could be said about the Harry Potter universe as JKR will not be continuing to expand this she is still the ultimate authority about how those people behave.

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