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In Prometheus, for what reason did Weyland hide on the ship? When he finally revealed that he was in the ship, it turns out nothing happens, there are no particular consequences and the reason for the secrecy is unclear. Why didn't Weyland just inform the crew that he's also aboard in the ship?

Can someone explain to me, what are the reason for this?

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I got the impression Weyland did not want the scientists (especially the two head scientists) to realize his selfish reason for wanting to contact the engineers. He kept them under the impression that he was funding the mission so that mankind could have the knowledge, even faking that he was already dead, the ultimate way to get credibility.

If he had been honest and said "I want the engineers to help me live forever" the scientists might not have gone along as he wanted them to. (For example, David suggests Weyland wanted Elizabeth Shaw there as a good-luck charm).

Remember the scene where Vickers tells the two scientists that they are not to make contact with the engineers? This is the first hint that Weyland (in the hologram) was lying. Vickers knew Weyland was alive, and knew his true goal, and did not want the scientists to interfere with that goal.

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    There must be a middle ground between full disclosure and full secrecy, though. What is suspicious about "I--too--believe that the engineers exist, and I want to be there when humanities biggest discovery occurs."
    – hexparrot
    Aug 14 '12 at 19:19
  • Without the secrecy, the movie wouldn't feature the twist of the secret coming out. So it could be the writers worked it in for suspense's sake.
    – Shiz Z.
    Sep 22 '12 at 3:58
  • I don't believe Vickers wanted to help her father, she wanted him to die, after all. Nov 19 '12 at 7:48
  • @ Dr, there is scene after he comes out of cryosleep in which she initially visits him in a hopeful, loving manner -- but he rejects her, cementing her hatred of him.
    – Shiz Z.
    Feb 20 '13 at 6:03
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I would suggest that a man of his wealth, extreme age and extreme desire for immortality would live by standards of caution that few people could imagine or afford. (I know of one real-life billionaire (and there are probably many such men of wealth who share his stance) who is very, very careful about his health and safety and funds medical research.)

So there would be no upside in letting multiple strangers know that he was aboard a ship in hibernation for two years -- he was very vulnerable.

Having said that, just traveling so far from Earth was risky -- why not stay in hibernation on Earth until David returns with the "cure?" Perhaps Weyland felt that only someone with his genius and charisma could effectively negotiate with the aliens.

But I also find it implausible that the sort of technology which produced David and/or hibernation would not be adaptable to extending human life. Or simply that a civilization that had these techs not to mention FTL spacecraft would not also be extremely advanced in the biological sciences. Weyland was old, probably well over 100 (maybe this is discussed in a novel or in short films) and he looked it -- no evidence at all that medical technology had significantly extended healthy human life.

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