We’re celebrating the 35th anniversary of Ridley Scott’s legendary Alien, and the franchise it spawned is one of sci-fi’s most enduring. But there’s a lot you don’t know about these movies, so let’s explore some of their darker corners.
8. The Chestburster Was a Surprise
One of the most shocking scenes in film history is when the newborn alien rockets out of Kane’s chest in the first Alien. To really drive it home, Scott didn’t tell them exactly when it was going to happen, and the explosion of gore contained real-life pig innards and other repugnant offal.
7. There Are Subliminal Frames in Aliens
James Cameron wanted the machine gun fire in Aliens to be as impactful as possible, so he not only had strobe lights on set flashing during the battle scenes, but he also had editors add a single white frame to the film after every gunshot.
(Source: Director’s commentary on DVD)
6. The Xenomorphs in Alien: Resurrection Had Genitals
Director Jean-Pierre Jeunet took a significant interest in the design of the Newborn hybrid creatures, and his biggest feedback was that the creature needed to have realistic male and female genitals. After the scenes were filmed, they were digitally edited out in post-production.
5. Ridley Scott Recycled Footage
Already over budget for Blade Runner, Ridley Scott took the computer-generated vector graphics animation he used for the Nostromo’s undocking in Alien and used them again for the aircar launch.