This movie franchise is still just as popular as ever since we saw the first ‘Alien’ in 1979. It’s hard to believe that the sequel ‘Aliens’ came out nearly 30 years ago and so we are celebrating by providing you with 30 facts that you probably didn’t know about these movie legends.
1. The Alien sounds.
Those were actually baboon noises that were put in post-production.
2. The Alien Queen.
We are pretty lucky to have CGI today but back then, it was all made by hand and the Alien Queen needed 14 to 16 operators to give her lifelike qualities.
3. The Alien Queen was too big!
When she was in confined to the elevator space during one scene, they actually had to take off the Queen’s tail and remove the back of the elevator to make room for her.
4. The original artist was not brought back for the sequel.
H.R. Giger was responsible for the look of the xenomorphs but Jame Cameron decided to bring him back for the sequel. instead, he took care of the new design for the Queen himself.
5. Five Aliens were transformed into many.
Ripley and the Marines were fighting off hundreds of Aliens and yet, it was all done with only 5 Alien costumes. Their transformation into many took place with some editing and lighting in which black leotards were transformed into fantastic Aliens that still terrify us today.
6. Originally, the titular aliens had different skin.
The skin was very translucent but they only kept this concept with the Alien Queen’s teeth.
7. The face-hugging aliens.
Their ability to thrash around the science lab was created by using a device that was used in Cameron’s early movie ‘Piranha Part Two: The Spawning’ and it took 9 people to work them (one person for each of the 8 legs and one person for the tail).
8. The knife scene almost didn’t happen.
It wasn’t in the original script. Also, Bill Paxton (Hudson) was the last one to know that his hand was going under the knife.
9. Newt was having too much fun on the set.
Actress Carrie Henn who played the little girl would deliberately ruin her lines so that she could continue sliding down the vent for fun. Eventually, Cameron told her that she could play on it all she wanted when she was done with her lines.
10. Lance Henriksen vowed to quit acting.
That is, unless his android character and the movie was successful because he hadn’t had much luck in the business yet. Now, it’s one of his most successful accomplishments in the movies.
11. Bill Paxton improvised this famous lines.
Including the one that we all know and love, “Game over, man! Game over!”
12. Al Matthews played a good Marine for a reason.
In real life, he was the first black marine to be promoted to a sergeant while serving in Vietnam.
13. Sigourney Weaver broke tradition.
Her performance as Ellen Ripley earned her an Oscar nomination for Best Actress even though The Academy Awards are notoriously prejudiced against genre films, specifically Sci-fi and horror.
14. See Sigourney’s real mom in the deleted scenes.
‘Aliens’ on Blue-Ray reveal her mother, Elizebeth, in a picture of Ripley’s daughter
15. The character, Marine Hicks, was initially played by James Remar.
However, he lost the role in a mere few days and was replaced by Michael Biehn due to his drug problem.
16. Another famous movie was nearby.
The movie ‘Full Metal Jacket’ was also being filmed nearby and the cast of this movie would often party with the ‘Aliens’ cast.
17. Hudson did most of the cussing.
The ‘F’ word was used 25 times and 18 of them were done by Bill Paxton.
18. Carrie Henn hated saying her most famous line.
We were terrified when she said this: “They mostly come at night. Mostly.” However, she later reveals that she didn’t like saying it.
19. One of the first scenes was actually filmed last.
The camaraderie between the Marines was real because Cameron decided to film it last in order to give the cast time to get to know each other well in order to appeal more realistic when he finally filmed it.
20. Edited until the last minute!
This movie wasn’t done with its editing until just one week before its release. There wasn’t even time to show it to test audiences which were unusual for blockbusters.
21. Cameron left after only writing 90 pages.
20th Century Fox was willing to wait for Cameron to come back after leaving to direct ‘The Terminator’ to resume production because they were already in love with the 90 pages he’d written so far.
22. Composer, James Horner wanted more time.
He felt that he need more time to develop the film’s musical score. He even However, Cameron loved Horner’s work on Braveheart so much that the two decided to work again on Titanic, leading to Oscar wins for them both.
23. Cameron wasn’t very famous yet.
His movie, ‘Terminator’ wasn’t released yet and so he hadn’t secured his legendary status and was constantly questioned about his decisions for ‘Aliens’ by the assistant director until he was eventually fired by the producer, Gale Ann Hurd.
24. The crew was upset with this.
They were loyal to Ridley Scott and so Cameron tried to win them over by letting them watch a private screening of ‘The Terminator’ but most of the crew didn’t even go.
25. The film set stayed intact.
It was later reused for Tim Burton’s first ‘Batman’ movie as the Axis Chemicals set.
26. Cameron maintained the franchise.
His attention to detail to Scott’s original film kept it alive. Including, the spear gun that Ripley fired at the end of ‘Alien’ which can be seen in the opening scenes in the same place, at the bottom of the escape pod door.
27. Cameron saved some money.
He did this by making only six hyper-sleep capsules instead of twelve because they each cost over $4,300 to create.
28. The Narcissus shuttle was gone.
The original models could not be found when ‘Aliens’ began and so they had to watch the original ‘Alien’ movie in order to redesign a new one.
29. The smoke used is now illegal.
The explosions and gunfights used three different types of smoke in ‘Alien’ and had since become illegal to use on movie sets.
30. Carrie Henn was substituted for a dummy model.
This was used for Sigourney Weaver to carry around before the Alien Queen chase to save her from carrying around a heavier child.