Alien: The Archive
Repository of Ripley
Release Date: OUT NOW!
320 pages | Hardback Author: Mark Salisbury Publisher: Titan Books
Numerous publications and extras- packed home entertainment releases mean the world is hardly short of background information about the Alien movies. While this beautiful book is unlikely to tell die- hard fans much they didn’t already know, however, it does contain plenty of gorgeous pictures to feast your eyes upon – and in that regard, it really is a treat.
Focusing on Ripley’s four tussles with Xenomorphs ( there’s no room for the AVP movies or Prometheus), it collects together an impressive array of goodies from what was once foolishly known as the Alien Quadrilogy. While the words don’t go particularly deep, the breadth of material is particularly impressive, with everything from Ridley Scott- sketched storyboards to obscure production photography ( someone thought it was a good idea to shoot the Alien cast as if they were a pop group) finding a home.
The undoubted highlight is masses of stunning concept art that reveals how the Alien universe evolved, and just how dedicated each one of the production teams was to creating a detailed setting – original production designer Ron Cobb even produced bespoke warning stickers for the Nostromo. Excised designs like Alien 3’ s infamous wooden planet and an early Giger creature that shares plenty of DNA with Resurrection’s Newborn hint at movies that could have been, while short contributions from key players help put the art in context.
Music video director and Aphex Twin collaborator Chris Cunningham produced designs for Alien 3 and Alien Resurrection.