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HISTORY

Just one month after the successful release of Aliens (see entry), the 15 Aug 1986 HR announced that Twentieth Century Fox planned to continue the series. Ridley Scott, who launched the franchise with 1979’s Alien (see entry), was reportedly interested in “returning to the material,” but by the following year, a 27 Dec 1987 LAT indicated that Alien and Aliens producer Walter Hill was in negotiations to direct a script by William Gibson. Although lead actress Sigourney Weaver was unwilling to commit to a third installment, Gibson opted to keep her character alive for a proposed fourth film. Instead, the script would be centered on “Alien”-human hybrids, weaponized by a powerful corporation to destroy “enemies of capitalism.”
       On 6 Nov 1988, LAT stated that up-and-coming director Renny Harlin had joined the project, while Hill remained onboard as a producer alongside Brandywine Productions partners David Giler and Gordon Carroll. Harlin stayed on for over a year, working on Gibson’s script and a new draft by Eric Red. According to the 29 Jul—5 Aug 1992 issue of Time Out (London), Red’s “bizarre” deviation from the first two films “allegedly pushed Harlin over the edge,” and the director dropped out to work on The Adventures of Ford Fairlane (1990, see entry).
       More than a year passed before the 22 Dec 1989 DV announced that Fox had hired David Twohy to prepare several scripts, as the studio was still considering the possibility of developing two sequels back-to-back. According to the 16-18 Mar 1990 issue of USA Weekend magazine, Fox ... More Less

Just one month after the successful release of Aliens (see entry), the 15 Aug 1986 HR announced that Twentieth Century Fox planned to continue the series. Ridley Scott, who launched the franchise with 1979’s Alien (see entry), was reportedly interested in “returning to the material,” but by the following year, a 27 Dec 1987 LAT indicated that Alien and Aliens producer Walter Hill was in negotiations to direct a script by William Gibson. Although lead actress Sigourney Weaver was unwilling to commit to a third installment, Gibson opted to keep her character alive for a proposed fourth film. Instead, the script would be centered on “Alien”-human hybrids, weaponized by a powerful corporation to destroy “enemies of capitalism.”
       On 6 Nov 1988, LAT stated that up-and-coming director Renny Harlin had joined the project, while Hill remained onboard as a producer alongside Brandywine Productions partners David Giler and Gordon Carroll. Harlin stayed on for over a year, working on Gibson’s script and a new draft by Eric Red. According to the 29 Jul—5 Aug 1992 issue of Time Out (London), Red’s “bizarre” deviation from the first two films “allegedly pushed Harlin over the edge,” and the director dropped out to work on The Adventures of Ford Fairlane (1990, see entry).
       More than a year passed before the 22 Dec 1989 DV announced that Fox had hired David Twohy to prepare several scripts, as the studio was still considering the possibility of developing two sequels back-to-back. According to the 16-18 Mar 1990 issue of USA Weekend magazine, Fox president Joe Roth objected to the absence of Weaver’s “Ellen Ripley,” and demanded that the character be reinstated. Despite her earlier hesitations and a recent pregnancy, Weaver approved of Twohy’s work and signed on in exchange for an increased salary of $4—$5 million, plus a co-producing credit. According to Time Out, Weaver denied having significant control over the script, but requested that the action not rely heavily on guns.
       Meanwhile, Hill hired director Vincent Ward, who caught the producer’s attention with his work on the Australian—New Zealand co-production, The Navigator: A Medieval Odyssey (1988). A 22 Apr 1990 LAT news item named John Fasano as the film’s latest screenwriter, which Time Out attributed to his reputation as a fast worker. Fasano revamped the entire script based on a new story idea by Ward, and Twohy walked away from the project following a dispute over the competing drafts. While Twohy’s version was set on a floating space station, Time Out stated that Fasano’s script depicted Ripley’s escape pod crash-landing on a “wooden” planet inhabited by monks. The idea was controversial among members of the studio, and Ward left the project while the sets were being built.
       As production loomed nearer, producers Giler and Hill paid Beverly Hills Cop 2 (1987, see entry) screenwriter Larry Ferguson $500,000 for rewrites. Although the 31 May 1992 LAT stated that a Writers Guild of America (WGA) arbitration credited Ferguson with fifty percent of the final shooting script, his contributions were poorly received, leaving Giler and Hill to assume control. A 22 Sep 1991 LAT magazine article reported that Fox recruited Rex Pickett four weeks before filming was set to begin, with specific instructions to change large sections of Giler and Hill’s latest draft. Time Out claimed that an additional writer contributed uncredited rewrites during filming; the official WGA submission sheet allegedly included a total of thirteen names. Meanwhile, the duo hired twenty-eight-year-old David Fincher to make his directorial debut based on his portfolio of acclaimed television commercials and music videos for artists such as Madonna, Paula Abdul, and Billy Idol.
       Despite concerns over a threatened strike by the Broadcast and Entertainment Trades Alliance (BETA), the 8 Feb 1991 HR reported that principal photography began 14 Jan 1991 at Pinewood Studios in London, England. Production notes in AMPAS library files stated that Fincher, a former matte painter at Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), utilized a range of ambitious special effects, with sets built across seven soundstages. Pinewood’s famed “007 Stage” housed the “Fiorina” colony blast furnace, while “molten lead” effects were achieved by mixing water, aluminum paste, and the thickening agent methylcellulose. Richard Edlund’s Boss Film Studios redesigned the titular Alien to increase its mobility and developed “Mo-motion,” a motion controlled camera system that used both rod puppetry and a “specially constructed laser-disc composite system” in conjunction with the Panavision 65mm Silent Studio Reflex camera. To shoot close-up action of the creature, effects designer Tom Woodruff, Jr. wore a fiberglass Alien head and full-body foam latex and nylon bodysuit, while long shots were created with puppets and matte painting composites.
       According to Time Out, Fincher quickly developed a reputation as a “brilliant but uncompromising perfectionist” that contributed to tensions between the creative production team and Fox executives. Shortly after filming began, director of photography Jordan Cronenweth was fired for being “too slow,” and was replaced by Alex Thomson. Executives Roger Birnbaum, Jon Landau, and Michael London also began putting pressure on Giler and Hill, who eventually left the London set and returned to Los Angeles, CA, feeling they had been undermined in their dual position as writer-producers. Filming continued on a rushed schedule consisting of eighteen-hour days, six days a week, until early summer 1991, when a 10 Jun 1991 HR brief announced the completion of photography in London.
       At this time, Fox president Joe Roth required that Fincher deliver a “rough assembly” of scenes to determine what needed to be finished. A 2 Mar 1992 HR article stated that nine weeks of editing ensued, resulting in a two-hour, seventeen-minute cut that Fincher presented to the studio. Following negative feedback, a 13 Nov 1991 DV item announced that four weeks of re-shoots were set to begin 9 Dec 1991 in Los Angeles. Weaver was once again forced to shave her head, as much of the needed footage involved scenes that had been cut from the original shooting script due to budget and schedule constraints. The post-production team then spent an additional two months editing and polishing the special effects, which postponed the Christmas 1991 release date by five months. While Time Out estimated a $35 million budget, the 22 Nov 1992 issue of Parade and 30 Jun 1992 Village Voice suggested that costs had ballooned to $50—$60 million.
       Alien 3 opened in more than 2,500 theaters on 22 May 1992 to mixed reviews and a decent weekend at the box-office. However, Village Voice reported that receipts plunged sixty percent in its second week, and Parade later stated that the cumulative U.S. gross reached only $55 million. A 14 Jul 1992 HR item suggested the picture fared better overseas, setting studio records in Hong Kong and garnering impressive returns in Taiwan. A 26 May 1992 DV brief announced that Alien 3 was set to launch the first-ever Cinema Expo in Brussels, Belgium, which ran 29 Jun—2 Jul 1992.
       The film received an Academy Award nomination for Best Visual Effects.
       On 10 Nov 2003, Var announced that Fox planned to release the “Alien Quadrilogy,” a four-piece box set of the first three “Alien” films and the 1997 sequel, Alien Resurrection (see entry). In addition to the to the theatrical version, the DVDs included a “making-of” documentary and a reconstruction of Fincher’s initial cut, which added thirty minutes of footage and several special effects shots. Fox reportedly spent $1 million for the restoration of both Alien 3 and Alien Resurrection, although Fincher declined to participate.
       Following Alien Resurrection, the franchise was expanded with a spin-off series consisting of Alien vs. Predator (2004, see entry) and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (2007, see entry), as well as the prequel, Prometheus (2012, see entry), and its follow-up, Alien: Covenant, anticipated for release in 2017.
       The following statements appear in end credits: "The Producers wish to thank: James Haygood, Jordan Cronenweth, A.S.C., Propaganda Films," and, "Made at Pinewood Studios, London, England." More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
22 Dec 1989.
---
Daily Variety
13 Nov 1991.
---
Daily Variety
26 May 1992.
---
Hollywood Reporter
15 Aug 1986.
---
Hollywood Reporter
8 Feb 1991
p. 1, 55.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Jun 1991.
---
Hollywood Reporter
2 Mar 1992
Section S, p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Mar 1992.
---
Hollywood Reporter
14 Jul 1992.
---
Long Beach Press-Telegram
12 Jan 1994.
---
Los Angeles Times
27 Dec 1987.
---
Los Angeles Times
6 Nov 1988.
---
Los Angeles Times
18 Dec 1988.
---
Los Angeles Times
22 Apr 1990.
---
Los Angeles Times
13 Jan 1991.
---
Los Angeles Times
22 Sep 1991.
---
Los Angeles Times
31 May 1992.
---
Parade
22 Nov 1992.
---
Screen International
19 Jun 1990.
---
Time Out (London)
29 Jul-5 Aug 1992
pp. 18-20.
USA Weekend
16-18 Mar 1990.
---
Variety
10 Nov 2003.
---
Village Voice
30 Jun 1992.
---
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Brandywine Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
1st asst dir
Prod mgr
2d asst dir
3d asst dir
3d asst dir
Dir, 2d unit
Asst dir, 2d unit
Asst dir, 2d unit
Dir, 2d unit (action seq)
1st asst dir, 2d unit (action seq)
1st asst dir, 2d unit (action seq)
2d asst dir, 2d unit (action seq)
Unit prod mgr, Los Angles unit
1st asst dir, Los Angles unit
2d 2d asst dir, Los Angles unit
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
WRITERS
Story
Based on characters created by
Based on characters created by
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
2d asst cam
Steadicam op
Steadicam asst
Dolly grip
Louma crane tech
Video assist tech
Gaffer
Gaffer
Louma crane
Dir of photog, 2d unit
Dir of photog, 2d unit
Cam op, 2d unit
Asst cam, 2d unit
Dolly grip, 2d unit
Gaffer, 2d unit
Gaffer, 2d unit
Dir of photog, 2d unit (action seq)
Cam op, 2d unit (action seq)
Cam op, 2d unit (action seq)
1st asst cam, 2d unit (action seq)
1st asst cam, 2d unit (action seq)
2d asst cam, 2d unit (action seq)
2d asst cam, 2d unit (action seq)
Dolly grip, 2d unit (action seq)
Gaffer, 2d unit (action seq)
Gaffer, 2d unit (action seq)
Digital cam op
Cam equip coord
Addl photog, Los Angles unit
Addl photog, Los Angles unit
Cam op, Los Angles unit
Cam op, Los Angles unit
Video playback, Los Angles unit
Key grip, Los Angles unit
Key grip, Los Angles unit
Chief lighting tech, Los Angles unit
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Supv art dir
Art dir
Asst art dir
Sr draughtsman
Draughtsman
Draughtsman
Storyboard artist
Storyboard artist
Storyboard artist
Conceptual architect
Conceptual artist
Conceptual artist
Open seq storyboard artist
Addl illustrions
FILM EDITORS
1st asst and visual eff ed
Asst ed (UK)
2d asst ed
2d asst ed
2d asst ed
Const mgr
Negative cutter
Negative developer
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Sr draughtsman
Draughtsman
Draughtsman
Const mgr
Asst const mgr
Prop master
Prop supv
Scenic artist
Decor & letting artist
Sculptor
Sculptor
Prod buyer
Consultant buyer
Chargehand prop maker
Prop storeman
Changehand dressing prop
Changehand dressing prop
Changehand standby prop
Standby propman
Const buyer
Supv carpenter
Standby carpenter
Supv painter
Sandby painter
Supv plasterer
Standby plasterer
Supv rigger
Standby rigger
Supv stagehand
Standby stagehand
Armourer
Prop master, Los Angles unit
Prop master, Los Angles unit
Const coord, Los Angles unit
Const coord, Los Angles unit
Const coord, Los Angles unit
COSTUMES
Cost des
Cost des
Asst costume des
Ward supv
Ward master
Ward mistress
Ward asst
Costume painting & dyeing
Ward, Los Angles unit
Ward, Los Angles unit
MUSIC
Sd des
Delete
Supv mus ed
Mus coord
Mus coord, Segue Music
Mus prod
Orch cond
Synthesizer programming
Mus score mixer
Mus score mixer
Addl orch
Mus contractor
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Sd maintenance
Supv sd ed
Supv ADR ed
ADR ed
ADR ed
ADR ed (U.K.)
Supv foley ed
Foley ed
Asst sd ed
Asst sd ed
Asst ADR ed
Asst ADR ed
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Rec
ADR mixer (U.K.)
ADR mixer
Foley artist
Foley artist
Dolby Stereo consultant
Alien creature eff crew
CGI tech dir
Key grip (spec eff)
Delete
Gaffer (spec eff)
Delete
Machine shop foreman
Sd mixer, Los Angles unit
VISUAL EFFECTS
Visual eff prod
Alien³ creature des
Alien eff des and created by
Alien eff des and created by
Spec eff supv
Orig alien des
Visual eff coord (UK)
Asst spec eff supv
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Spec eff tech
Sr spec eff tech
Spec eff tech
Spec eff tech
Spec eff tech
Spec eff flying wire specialist
Title des
Title des
Titles and opticals
UK opticals
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Alien creature eff crew
Visual eff supv, Boss Film Studios
Visual eff co-supv, Boss Film Studios
Visual eff prod supv, Boss Film Studios
Opt dept supv, Boss Film Studios
Visual eff art dir, Boss Film Studios
Supv/Lead puppeteer, Boss Film Studios
Visual eff line prod, Boss Film Studios
Visual eff coord, Boss Film Studios
Opt supv, Boss Film Studios
Opt supv, Boss Film Studios
Opt coord, Boss Film Studios
Opt line-up, Boss Film Studios
Opt line-up, Boss Film Studios
Opt line-up, Boss Film Studios
Opt cam, Boss Film Studios
Opt cam, Boss Film Studios
Opt cam, Boss Film Studios
Negative developer, Boss Film Studios
Quality control, Boss Film Studios
CGI tech dir, Boss Film Studios
CGI tech dir, Boss Film Studios
CGI tech dir, Boss Film Studios
Matte painter, Boss Film Studios
Matte cam, Boss Film Studios
Rigger/Puppeteer, Boss Film Studios
Asst puppeteer, Boss Film Studios
Opening seq storyboard artist, Boss Film Studios
Addl illustrations, Boss Film Studios
Anim cam op, Boss Film Studios
Rotoscope artist, Boss Film Studios
Rotoscope artist, Boss Film Studios
Rotoscope artist, Boss Film Studios
Visual eff ed, Boss Film Studios
Dir of alien puppet photography, Boss Film Studios
Dir of miniature photog, Boss Film Studios
Cam op, Boss Film Studios
Cam op, Boss Film Studios
Key grip, Boss Film Studios
Motion control op, Boss Film Studios
Cam asst, Boss Film Studios
Laser composite system op, Boss Film Studios
Gaffer, Boss Film Studios
Gaffer, Boss Film Studios
Motion control dolly grip/Plate photography, Boss
Model shop supv, Boss Film Studios
Lead modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Lead modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Modelmaker, Boss Film Studios
Model shop coord, Boss Film Studios
Machine shop foreman, Boss Film Studios
Des eng, Boss Film Studios
Electronics eng, Boss Film Studios
UV eff provided by
Cam equip coord, Boss Film Studios
Spec eff coord, Los Angles unit
Spec eff coord, Los Angles unit
Spec eff foreman, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Spec eff tech, Los Angles unit
Video medical scan graphics and displays by
Video Image
Video Image
Video Image
Video Image
Coord, Video Image
Crew, Video Image
Crew, Video Image
Crew, Video Image
Crew, Video Image
Crew, Video Image
MAKEUP
Makeup supv
Ms. Weaver's makeup artist
Chief makeup artist
Chief makeup artist
Chief hairdresser
Hairdresser
Quality control
Delete
Spec makeup eff, Los Angles unit
Makeup artist, Los Angles unit
Hairstylist, Los Angles unit
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod supv
UK/USA prod supv
Scr supv
Prod coord
Asst prod coord
Prod accountant
Asst prod acct
Asst accountant
Asst accountant
Asst accountant
Accounts asst
Accounts asst
Asst to prods
Asst to Mr. Fincher
Asst to Mr. Fincher
Asst to Ms. Weaver
Casting asst
Prod office P.A.
Loc mgr
Loc mgr
ADR voice casting
Prod buyer
Consultant buyer
Unit driver
Unit driver
Unit driver
Unit driver
Unit driver
Unit driver
Const transport
Prop transport
Animal handler
Armouer
Unit nurse
Physiotherapist
Script supv, 2d unit
Quality control
Script supv, Los Angles unit
Prod coord, Los Angles unit
Prod accountant, Los Angles unit
Asst to Mr. Fincher, Los Angles unit
Prod asst, Los Angles unit
Extras casting, Los Angles unit
Animal trainer, Los Angles unit
Animal trainer, Los Angles unit
Transportation capt, Los Angles unit
Transportation capt, Los Angles unit
Animal action supv by
STAND INS
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt player
Stunt coord
ANIMATION
Anim cam op
Rotoscope artist
Rotoscope artist
Rotoscope artist
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col timer
Col timer
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on characters created by Dan O'Bannon and Ronald Shusett.
SONGS
"In The Year 2525 (Exordium And Terminus)," written by Rick Evans.
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Series:
Alternate Titles:
Alien³
Alien III
Release Date:
22 May 1992
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 22 May 1992
Production Date:
14 January--early June 1991
re-shoots began 9 December 1991
Copyright Claimant:
Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Copyright Date:
15 May 1992
Copyright Number:
PA565581
Physical Properties:
Sound
Spectral Recording® Dolby Stereo in selected theaters
Color
Lenses
Filmed in Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
105
MPAA Rating:
R
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
31392
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Lt. Ellen Ripley is the sole survivor of a fire on the Colonial Marine spaceship Sulaco. While in cryonic stasis, her escape pod crash lands on Fiorina "Fury" 161, a foundry facility inhabited by twenty-five male prisoners with a history of physical and sexual violence. However, they have developed a religious order that has taken of a vow of celibacy. Dillon, a spokesman for the prisoners, voices his discontent with Ripley’s presence, but is assured by superintendent Andrews that she will be picked up by the “company” within a week. While the men debate, the prison dog examines the escape pod and spots movement. Later, a prisoner named Morse finds the dog with deep cuts on its face. Ripley awakens from cryostasis and meets Clemens, the prison’s medical officer, who informs her that all the other passengers in the pod are dead. Ripley demands to be taken to the rescue pod, and notices burnt metal near the cryotube that was holding twelve-year-old Newt. Ripley convinces Clemens to autopsy Newt’s corpse. As they finish, Andrews arrives and demands Ripley return to sickbay for her safety. Ripley waves off his concerns and insists her companions’ bodies be cremated due to possible cholera contamination. Although Clemens finds no evidence of cholera, he backs up Ripley and Andrews agrees. As Dillon officiates a cremation service in the colony blast furnace, an alien bursts from the dog’s chest, ripping it in two. A few hours later, a man is cleaning a ventilation tube when it spots the alien. Before ... +


Lt. Ellen Ripley is the sole survivor of a fire on the Colonial Marine spaceship Sulaco. While in cryonic stasis, her escape pod crash lands on Fiorina "Fury" 161, a foundry facility inhabited by twenty-five male prisoners with a history of physical and sexual violence. However, they have developed a religious order that has taken of a vow of celibacy. Dillon, a spokesman for the prisoners, voices his discontent with Ripley’s presence, but is assured by superintendent Andrews that she will be picked up by the “company” within a week. While the men debate, the prison dog examines the escape pod and spots movement. Later, a prisoner named Morse finds the dog with deep cuts on its face. Ripley awakens from cryostasis and meets Clemens, the prison’s medical officer, who informs her that all the other passengers in the pod are dead. Ripley demands to be taken to the rescue pod, and notices burnt metal near the cryotube that was holding twelve-year-old Newt. Ripley convinces Clemens to autopsy Newt’s corpse. As they finish, Andrews arrives and demands Ripley return to sickbay for her safety. Ripley waves off his concerns and insists her companions’ bodies be cremated due to possible cholera contamination. Although Clemens finds no evidence of cholera, he backs up Ripley and Andrews agrees. As Dillon officiates a cremation service in the colony blast furnace, an alien bursts from the dog’s chest, ripping it in two. A few hours later, a man is cleaning a ventilation tube when it spots the alien. Before he can run, the creature spews acid in his face, causing him to fall into a huge fan and be chopped to bits. Later, Clemens asks Ripley what she expected to find during the autopsy. Instead of answering, she takes him to bed. After having sex, Clemens asks again what Ripley expected to find in Newt’s body. Ripley explains she had a dream that something else killed her companions. Clemens receives a call from Andrews’ assistant, Aaron, ordering him to the ventilation shaft. There, Clemens discovers melted metal, and recognizes that it looks like the burn on the Newt’s cryotube. Ripley retrieves the escape pod’s flight recorder, but Clemens states that the base’s computers are not equipped to retrieve the data. Ripley asks him about the android, “Bishop,” who was aboard her ship. Clemens explains he was too broken to repair and thrown onto a garbage heap. Andrews orders Clemens to his office and informs him that the corporation has made Ripley’s safety its highest priority. When Ripley goes to the dump and locates Bishop’s head and an arm, she is attacked by five prisoners intent on raping her. Dillon appears and beats the men senseless. Ripley activates Bishop and learns that an alien caused the fire on the ship and was on the escape pod. The corporation is aware of this and is coming to collect the alien. The android begs Ripley to disconnect him, since he is damaged beyond repair. Later, the alien, which has grown to more than eight feet tall, attacks three men, and kills two. Only the prisoner Golic escapes, but he is driven mad. In sickbay, Dillon coaxes Golic into telling his tale, but Andrews does not believe him. Even after Ripley swears the creature is real, the superintendent refuses to believe it exists. Later, as Clemens injects Ripley with a sedative, the alien appears and tears him apart. As Golic stares in horror, the creature sniffs Ripley, before leaving with Clemens’ body. She rushes to the mess hall to inform Andrews, who has called all the men to a meeting. Andrews denounces her as a madwoman seconds before the alien sucks him into a ventilation shaft. His assistant, Aaron, declares he is in charge, but Dillon refuses to follow him and chooses Ripley as leader. After being informed that there are no weapons in the colony, Ripley devises a plan to capture the alien by covering the ventilation shafts with a flammable substance. When ignited, the fire will drive the creature into a holding chamber with six-foot steel walls. As they paint the shaft, a man is attacked by the alien and drops a flare, sending a fire ball through the tunnel and killing a dozen men. Dillon activates a sprinkler system to save the remaining few. After collecting the dead, Ripley feels faint and returns to the escape pod when Aaron runs a neuro-scan on her. It reveals that an alien embryo is growing inside her. Ripley realizes this is why the other alien did not kill her earlier. Ripley demands Aaron send a false message that the base has gone toxic, but he refuses, even when she explains the corporation plans to use the alien as a bio-weapon. As they argue, a message from the corporation reveals it has received information from Ripley’s neuro-scan and is two hours away with a rescue team. Ripley finds Dillon and explains the alien is a queen that impregnated her while she was in cryostasis. If she gets off the planet, the embryo will infect the galaxy with its spawn. Ripley begs Dillon to kill her. He agrees, but only after she helps him kill the adult queen. He gathers the remaining men and explains the situation. Aaron wants to wait for the rescue team, but Ripley convinces the men they will be killed simply for knowing the alien exists. Their only chance is to take out the creature themselves, before the company arrives. Dillon concocts a plan to lure the creature into the ventilation shaft by using the men as bait. Each man would run a short distance and shut a door, herding the alien into the furnace room. There, Ripley will keep it occupied until a large steam piston can slam it into the furnace where they will be deluged with molten lead. The plan goes astray when a door becomes stuck, allowing the creature to kill most the men and avoid the piston. As the rescue ship arrives with a squad of marines, Dillon, Ripley, and Morse enter the shaft and taunt the beast into following them. They run into the mold room. Morse and Ripley climb out, but Dillon stays behind to keep the beast in position. Dillon insists Ripley cannot die until she is sure the queen alien is dead. Upstairs, Aaron meets the marines and leads them to the furnace. They arrive to find Morse and Ripley at the furnace controls while the alien devours Dillon. Morse hits the button that rains the molten lead onto the creature. However, the alien burst forth and chases Ripley up a scaffold. Morse yells for Ripley to hit the sprinklers. The cold water causes the creature’s exoskeleton to become brittle and explode. Before they can celebrate, a man resembling Bishop introduces himself as Bishop’s creator. He assures Ripley the corporation sent him to remove the alien she is carrying and kill it. Realizing the man is lying, Ripley and Morse leap onto a moveable platform, which Morse positions over the furnace. A marine shoots Morse, causing an enraged Aaron to hit Bishop’s creator with a wrench. He is gunned down by another marine. Bishop’s creator pleads with Ripley to let him examine the alien inside her, but instead, she dives off the platform. As she falls, the creature bursts from her chest. She grabs it, and the two plunge into the fire. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.