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H.R. Giger Returns To the Alien Franchise 144

Posted by timothy
from the how-could-this-not-give-nightmares dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Great news for Alien franchise purists, as conceptual artist H.R. Giger has been confirmed as a contributor to the prequel that Ridley Scott is set to begin shooting in February. The originator of the 'xenomorph' design, Giger was left out of James Cameron's Aliens (1986), since Cameron only needed a new 'Alien queen' design, and had come up with that himself. This article features the Swiss TV broadcast where Giger's wife broke the news, and a full gallery of Giger's conceptual work for Alien."
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H.R. Giger Returns To the Alien Franchise

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 19, 2010 @10:36AM (#34606964)

    I've been to his museum in Switzerland and the dude has really nightmarish works - all from his conscious. His subconscious must be really weird

    I wonder if in his nightmares, he has fuzzy bunnies and care bears?

  • by Sponge Bath (413667) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @10:38AM (#34606974)
    Prequels of played out franchises mostly blow chunks. Mostly.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      All prequels blow chunks, because we know what's going to happen. why bother.

      • by paiute (550198)

        All prequels blow chunks, because we know what's going to happen. why bother.

        What civilization had made the alien ship? It wasn't the penis heads. There was a dead pilot of another species in a control chair, as I recall. Why were they carrying a load of eggs and no queen?

        • by Anonymous Coward

          Why were they carrying a load of eggs and no queen?

          Queen dies if there's no meat to sustain itself. Eggs don't hatch until potential alien hosts are around.

      • All prequels blow chunks, because we know what's going to happen. why bother.

        Yeah, I hated that Hobbit book.

        • All prequels blow chunks, because we know what's going to happen. why bother.

          Yeah, I hated that Hobbit book.

          ...except that technically wasn't a prequel, because it was released about 16 years before LotR.

          The Silmarillion, on the other hand...

        • Yeah, I hated that hobbit book

          The Hobbit (1937)
          The Lord of the Rings (1954-1955)

          Perhaps you're thinking of the Silmarillion (1977).

    • by Ephemeriis (315124) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @11:02AM (#34607096)

      Prequels of played out franchises mostly blow chunks. Mostly.

      Indeed, they do. And after the horror that was Alien: Resurrection and the absolute mediocrity of the two AvP movies, I was not expecting much out of this prequel.

      But they've got Ridley Scott directing, and now H.R. Giger is on-board as well... A couple steps in the right direction.

      It may not turn out to be absolutely horrible.

      Maybe.

      • by phayes (202222)
        The first hour was OK, It wasn't until Mommy came into the picture that it went down the tubes. As for the ending, I try to blot it out of my mind...
      • I like Sigourney Weaver, really, but I think her (hopeful) absence from a prequel (aside from, perhaps, a cameo) would allow it to work. Aliens 3 and 4 both ended up stilted as a result of their attempt to build those movies around Ripley.

        Getting Ridley Scott for this one is a good move, too. It will be interesting to see if the prequel is focused more on the stark, gritty, claustrophobic terror present in the original, although a lot of that came from the lower budget and not having CG effects.

        • I like Sigourney Weaver, really, but I think her (hopeful) absence from a prequel (aside from, perhaps, a cameo) would allow it to work. Aliens 3 and 4 both ended up stilted as a result of their attempt to build those movies around Ripley.

          I generally agree.

          Sigourney/Ripley was fine for 1 & 2. I didn't think 3 was a very strong movie. The novelization was much better, and was based on an earlier version of the screenplay. I wish they'd gone with the earlier version. I don't think Sigourney/Ripley was the problem in 3. In 4... Well, that movie had lots of problems. And I think a lot of them stemmed from trying to force Ripley back into the story.

          Getting Ridley Scott for this one is a good move, too. It will be interesting to see if the prequel is focused more on the stark, gritty, claustrophobic terror present in the original, although a lot of that came from the lower budget and not having CG effects.

          I really enjoyed Aliens, but it wasn't much of a horror movie. More of an action movie.

          • by MistrBlank (1183469) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @04:50PM (#34609688)

            The problem is that much of the horror in Alien that made it work is overdone now. It had a lot of gore for a movie of it's time, complete with a woman running around in her panties. That was cute and new and the horror was what was off the screen.

            Movie goers are immune to the gore, immune to that half naked woman (even fully naked women at this point) and the horror of what's not seen, is now just seen as a cheap budget. You can't even be scared by something you've seen before, which is why Cameron spent so much time in the first sequel not even showing you the Alien until he was ready to throw all of it at you.

            You won't get another Alien. You won't get another Aliens. Give it up folks. We're stuck with what we've gotten of the AvP movies, Predators and Resurrection. It doesn't get new. Just enjoy the story.

            • by Cochonou (576531) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @05:25PM (#34609982) Homepage
              I'm a bit surprised by your opinion. I've recently watched Alien again, and I really find that this movie has aged very well. It's still frightening - slow, deliberate, and with no shitty jump scare moments. The scene in the mechanic storage rooms with water falling down is excruciating. The aliens eggs are still gross and gory. Of course, the puppet alien running on the table after bursting from his host's chest looks cheap compared to today's standards. But it's about the only scene like this.
              • by Barny (103770)

                Hehe, you should check out the 'making of', it was actually glued to a model train thats just hidden out of shot.

                Also how can you compare to the original when you not only get (as others have said) nasty big aliens that are frighteningly fast (this was the first film to break away from slow/lumbering aliens) but you get to see her running around in her underwear, and yes, in a few shots you can see her pussy...

                God, I can't believe I made that joke, please mod me down for it.

            • I'm going to have to disagree with you on this...

              The problem is that much of the horror in Alien that made it work is overdone now.

              A lot of what made the first Alien work was the pacing.

              You spent the first hour or so with nothing going on. There's tension... It's obvious they aren't where they should be. The ship is claustrophobic. There's some disagreements between the crew. The ship is damaged during the landing and makes horrible noise. The planet itself looks like it is made out of knives, and it's noisy as hell.

              But nothing happens for the longest time.

              Most movies just jump in

            • by bonch (38532)

              Alien is timelessly scary in a psychological way. It has underlying connotations of rape and forced pregnancy that creep people out. The movie wasn't a success because of gore or Signourney Weaver's panties. The best parts of the film are the claustrophobia of the ship's industrial environment and the weirdness of the alien's lifecycle. If the prequel can tap into those psychological aspects that freak people out, it'll be worth checking out.

        • by Intrinsic (74189)

          IF they are going to do a prequel It should happen before Sigourney Weaver's character(or any other characters from the first two) was involved. There are some comics written about the alien home-world, hopefully they will focus on visiting the alien home world and not accidentally get stowaways on board on the trip back to earth. Hint, Hint.

      • Alien Resurrection is only bad if you take it for what it isn't. If you take it for what it is, you'd realize it's a brilliant Joss Wheddon movie that happens to take place in the Alien universe. I'm sure if you read all of the comic books and cross overs you'd realize some of those are crap (Batman vs Aliens for instance).

        It's a fun movie, give it up and just enjoy the stories in the Alien universe that you do like.

        • As I recall, that movie spent 1:20 taking place in a far-off, remote part of the galaxy, and then in the last ten minutes they flew to planet Earth.

          Joss Whedon did that movie? My tentative respect for him just dropped a few notches.

        • Alien Resurrection is only bad if you take it for what it isn't.

          I took it for another movie in the Alien universe. Is it not?

          If you take it for what it is, you'd realize it's a brilliant Joss Wheddon movie that happens to take place in the Alien universe.

          Brilliant? Really? That's your idea of brilliance?

          I'm sure if you read all of the comic books and cross overs you'd realize some of those are crap (Batman vs Aliens for instance).

          Yup. There's an awful lot of crap out there in the Alien universe. Resurrection is a shining example.

          It's a fun movie

          In kind of a "SyFy Original" kind of way...

          There's definitely some neat moments. Kind of fun seeing Ripley bleed acid and kick everyone's ass. Always fun to see aliens on the rampage. I enjoyed some of the characters.

          But then you trip over some ginormous hole in the plot. Or somebody goes a

      • by Grishnakh (216268)

        I'm wondering if they shouldn't just give up on the whole "Alien" franchise altogether, since it's been ruined by all the sequels, and start fresh with something new. Basically, another movie about scary aliens, but not related to the other movies. Can't Giger come up with some different scary-looking aliens? Face it, anyone watching this is going to have preconceptions because of all the other shitty movies (everything made after "Aliens") in the franchise, so there's no way they're going to make anyone

    • by morgaen (1896818)

      Avatar was a brilliant sequel to Pocahontas.

    • Prequels of played out franchises mostly blow chunks. Mostly.

      If you live in Chicago, I highly recommend seeing Alien Queen [bigtopjojo.com] at circuit nightclub. It's a mashup of Alien+Aliens set to the music of queen, with a Drag Queen as Ripley. If the thought of full-sized xenomorphs in excellent costumes dancing sexy piques your interest, you should check it out.

  • Close your eyes and repeat "Please do not repeat Star Wars prequels , please do not repeat Star Wars prequels". Let me rescue something from those years!
    • From what I have been reading it seems like it is going to be very in depth. This isn't star wars...star wars is a bit more...like a love story with lots of lasers and drama in the mix. Aliens is Sci-fi horror with lots of background missing....so I'm not sure how you can even make a comparison. Alien actually has LOTS room for a prequel unlike Star Wars which already had a background storyline to it when they made A New Hope. Especially considering the prequel is set in the year 2085 (3 decades before Elle
      • No, Star Wars has GREAT prequels. It's just they are in videogame form. Like Starwars: Republic Commando. Absolutely stellar game. You knew what happens afterwards, but what gets you there actually got me PISSED! F the Jedi!
    • by Jonner (189691)

      Fortunately, unlike Lucas, Scott has continued to make a variety of good movies. He hasn't worked on one series his entire career. As long as the writers don't totally suck, these movies will be decent.

  • That Hollywood hasn't had an ORIGINAL idea in decades. Instead of developing a NEW idea, they fall back on releasing part 2,3,4, then "prequels".
    • by ErikZ (55491) *

      Feel free to spend 40 million of your own money on an original idea.

      Suddenly, guaranteed return doesn't seem so bad now, does it?

      • I understand the financial aspect of the film, but that doesn't help me getting bored out of my skull sitting through the samey movies.
        • May I recommend Scott Pilgrim? One of the unique and underrated movies of the year.
          • by WCLPeter (202497)

            I couldn't agree more. When it came out I didn't know anything about it but when I got to the theatre and saw the movie I was going to see was sold out, I can't even remember what it was because Scott Pilgrim was so good, I saw the poster for Scott Pilgrim and figure "what the hell, this is the cheapy place so if I spend 6 bucks and I hate it no big" and decided to give it a go.

            I have never seen anything like it: funny, witty, characters you actually care about, unashamedly Canadian (the film proudly takes

      • If I do that, do I get Hollywood to stop making remakes? If so, it'll be worth every penny.
    • by ScentCone (795499)
      Hollywood hasn't had an ORIGINAL idea in decades

      Out of curiosity, have you seen Inception?
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Hollywood hasn't had an ORIGINAL idea in decades

        Out of curiosity, have you seen Inception?

        Point taken, allow me to rephrase on behalf of OP

        Hollywood hasn't had a GOOD, original idea in decades

        You're welcome!

      • by osgeek (239988)

        You mean Dreamscape 2010?

    • by forkazoo (138186)

      That Hollywood hasn't had an ORIGINAL idea in decades. Instead of developing a NEW idea, they fall back on releasing part 2,3,4, then "prequels".

      Bah, there are piles of brilliant original ideas floating around Hollywood. When one of them gets made, it brings in less money than Transformers VIII : The return of the curse of the revenge of the ghost of the fallen franchise. Consequently, studios continue to invest primarily in fairly bland pictures that are likely to appeal to the broadest possible audience

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by mgblst (80109)

      You mean like Moon, last year? Or 100 other original movies that are out there, but morons are too busy watching the same pap over and over again. Morons like you?

      There is stuff out there, go look for it.

  • The problem with an Alien prequel is that somehow humans will be involved, which will make little or no sense at all. That was one of my beefs with the AvP movies.
    • by Stele (9443) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @12:10PM (#34607590) Homepage

      Exactly.

      The really cool thing about that alien ship in Alien was just how *ALIEN* it was.

      It'll turn out that humans engineering both the space-jockey species AND the Aliens. BORING. Let me say it again: BOR-ING!

    • The problem with not having humans involved is that the audience should be involved. With Alien, Ripley was just a human doing a job and was easy for the audience to relate to. If you'd made AvP realistic, with no humans, there'd have been an alien with a gun and an alien with sharp teeth. Who does the audience relate to? No one really - there's just running, shooting, and eventually one of them dies. Like watching a nature documentary, only without the narration. They added some humans into the mix s
      • by l0ungeb0y (442022)

        Why can't the Space Jockey specie be human-like? After all the Space Jockey had a humanoid appearance.
        I think it's entirely possible to do this story without a single human and have it be extremely engaging to the audience.
        All that're required is for the characters to be able to have complex dialogue and human characteristics that we can relate to.

        However, I'm sure human's would have to be involved at some point to explain how Wayland-Yutani gained knowledge of the crash site and the existence of the xeno-m

      • by mliu (85608)

        Sounds kinda too in-the-box film-school-style thinking.

        The key part of having a character the audience is able to relate to is the personality, having relatable motivations and such. How much of a difference does it make if they don't look human, maybe a bit to some, but probably not too much to many.

        • I'm pretty sure there's been plenty of films where all the characters (or at least the main ones) were animals - albeit often with anthropomorphised behaviour.

      • by lennier1 (264730)

        Strange. "Scar" (the lead Predator in the AvP movie) was quite easy to relate to, if one has at least a rudimentary understanding of the tribal societies of old. Hell, it's the humans who actually were a distraction from the real story!

    • Why should no humans be involved? The company knew that something was out there, something that could be weaponized. How? Why? That is what I want to see in a prequel.
  • Alien or The Brood from X-Men?

    As far as I could tell, they were identical.

    And for all you young whipper-snappers, I mean X-Men the comic book from back in the 80s.

  • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @01:18PM (#34608156)

    I just hope someone's remembered to take out a restraining order against George Lucas - he shouldn't be allowed within 1/2 mile of this project.

    • I think you mean 12 parsecs.
  • by l0ungeb0y (442022) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @01:22PM (#34608196) Homepage Journal

    I know that resentment rides high on Slashdot over Lucas' prequel efforts, but Ridley Scott is a Director/Producer of a whole other calibre. Franky, I'm hard pressed to name a bad film by Scott... sure, some movies such as Kingdom of Heaven and Hannibal come to mind, but they were very watchable and had many redeeming qualities beyond just action and effects. Also keep in mind that Scott is responsible for both Alien and Blade Runner, two of most memorable and defining sci-fi efforts in cinematic history, and he did them back to back. And most importantly, Scott's entire portfolio is very diverse in genre and subject matter. Unlike Lucas, he is a truly imaginative and gifted director and not one to take up a project to make a buck or milk a franchise.

    Personally, I see lots of potential for these prequels to be nothing short of fantastic. The telling of the story of the Space Jockey and the origins of the Xeno-Morph has all sorts of potential, as does the telling of the 1st encounter and discovery of the Xeno-Morph by Weyland-Yutani. These stories aren't those of a true prequel in the Star Wars sense, those were stories that closely followed an existing story arc around a small set of characters. Here, we have a whole other set of stories only loosely related to the stories we already know.

    So give Scott some slack, you know you're going to see these movies in the theatre no matter what the reviews say and you know that with Scott at the helm, there will be a decent plot and story line and that the visuals and world will be stunning and engaging.

    • Ridley Scott is a great visual director, but the quality of his movies relies heavily on the quality of the scripts he chooses, and a lot of the time he chooses some awful scripts.

    • by dargaud (518470)

      And most importantly, Scott's entire portfolio is very diverse in genre and subject matter. Unlike Lucas

      What, you don't think Star Wars and Howard the Duck are diverse enough ?!?

    • Scott is just as capable of making crappy movies as George Lucas is of creating great movies. Artists are often hit and miss, *especially* in the movie industry.

  • Soundtrack (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Dani Filth (677047) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @01:36PM (#34608306) Homepage
    Soundtrack by Triptykon?
  • Darkseed (Score:4, Insightful)

    by BigSes (1623417) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @03:20PM (#34609076)
    He also did the artwork for the PC-Amiga Darkseed titles. Lots of his freaky, Alien type artwork. Can still be easily gotten ahold of if any fans want to check it out.
  • It's hard to imagine a new Alien movie being any good after all the crap since Aliens.

    William Gibson wrote an interesting if flawed script [online.no] for what could have been Alien 3, but it seems like they've missed a few obvious wins:

    1.) The aliens get to earth and it's all out war. 2.) We find the alien home planet and it's all out war.
    • 1.) Aliens vs. battlemech battalions? Hmm... your newsletter, i want to subscribe. 2.) Why? The aliens are obviously at best semi-intelligent hive species. How would their home planet endanger us? If in doubt, well, nuke it from orbit, you know why.
      • by ErkDemon (1202789) on Sunday December 19, 2010 @10:14PM (#34611960) Homepage

        The Aliens are intelligent. They've got VERY big brains, they're possibly socially telepathic, and they've gotten around the cultural problem of a lack of information-continuity between generations by developing (or adopting from another parasitised species) a form of inherited memory. That's how the Ripley-Alien hybrid clone has memories of being Ripley.

        The nasty question posed by the inherited-memory thing is: The aliens have a fetal stage (implanted by the face-huggers) during which they adapt to their new environment by adapting to and adopting elements of their host's biology ... and presumably they also retain memories from the Queen that laid their egg. During the adaptation process, does the alien fetus, which potentially has telepathic abilities, also imprint on the memories and personality of its host?

        In other words, when Little Aliens burst out of humans and become Big Aliens, do those Big Aliens then have false memories of being human? That might go some way to explaining why they're so pissed off.

        While there's stuff like that that still needs to be addressed, I think there's space for at least one more film, and if we're going to be seeing unexplored aspects of the Alien biology, it's cool that they've got Giger onboard to extend and elaborate on some of his original designs.

        • The inherited memory angle definitely is interesting, however, I don't think I can extract that from the first two (in my view canonical) films. Do you have any in-universe evidence for that? Oh, please be extra convincing, I am you friendly neighbourhood biochemist, who really needs some strong arguments when it comes to inherited/racial memory.... ;)

          Actually, if you posit that the false memories of humanity is what pisses the Big Aliens off, you are deep into Freudian therapy. I kinda envision Big Alien M

    • by geekoid (135745)

      Or they are created by a separate race, and we have to deal with that.

  • That's it man, game over man, game over! What the fuck are we gonna do now? What are we gonna do?

  • ... Ridley Scott's SF horror masterpiece ...

    What? Come on, folks, Alien stopped being interesting or even scary after the creature erupted from the guy's chest and the characters started wandering off alone to get killed. You can tick them off one by one the moment they walk away from the safety of the group. You know be dead in a couple minutes. Scott even used the B-movie cliche of having a character enter a scary room and slowly turn around while looking up at the ceiling until he walks backwards into th

    • by bonch (38532)

      Alien was well acted and was certainly a great technical production, but how it ever became "a masterpiece of horror" is a huge mystery.

      The oppressive environment of the ship, "truckers in space" motif, underlying sexual connotation of the alien lifecycle, and the uniqueness of the alien design make it a horror classic.

  • They rarely tell you anything you need to know, aren't answering burning questions, and are locked into predestination because you already know how the damn thing ends up. It's permissible to include flashbacks within a larger story that will provide some elaboration of how things came to pass. Probably the best example of that sort of thing was the whole Angelus backstory in Angel. Darla was a throwaway character from season 1 and none of that backstory was established beyond a sketchy paragraph in the sto

An Ada exception is when a routine gets in trouble and says 'Beam me up, Scotty'.

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