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A Glimpse Into The ‘Prometheus’ Script, Back When It Had Xenomorphs, Facehuggers And Chestbursters!

Ridley Scott’s Prometheus, his quasi Alien prequel, will be arriving on both Blu-ray and DVD this coming week on both the UK and in the States.

I found a lot to like in the film, though I can’t really argue with its many detractors. The logic is utterly nonexistent in many of the characters. Still, I liked the ideas it tried to wrestle with. And visually I thought it was stunning. But a lot of folks wished it had been much more of an Alien film (that last, brief, xenomorph tag not being enough for them). And it was! At least back in Jon Spaihts‘ original draft (before Damon Lindelof came onboard).

Head inside to check out some details on what Prometheus was like back when it had Facehuggers, Chestbursters (during sex even) and Xenomorphs. Oh, and ostensibly more character motivation!

It was actually Fox who wanted it to be less of an Alien movie, which is why they called in Lindelof. “I wrote five different drafts of the script, working with Ridley very closely over about nine months. And even as we were working, we were constantly toying with the closeness of the monsters in the film to the original xenomorph. You can see an interesting balance, even looking at the movies in the Alien franchise, between homage and evolution. In every film you’ll see that the design of the Alien shifts – the shape of the carapace, the shape of the body – and some of that is to with new technology available to realise the monsters, but a lot of is just a director’s desire to do something new. Ridley and I were looking for ways to make the xenomorphs new.

And so he was always pushing for some way in which that Alien biology could have evolved. We tried different paths in that way. We imagined that there might be eight different variations on the xenomorphs – eight different kinds of Alien eggs you might stumble across, eight kinds of slightly different xenomorph creatures that could hatch from them. And maybe even a rapid process of evolution, still ongoing, in these Alien laboratories where these xenomorphs were developed. So Ridley and I were looking for ways to make the xenomorphs new.

The creature did change in some pretty dramatic ways from draft to draft. But the most dramatic change was the removal of the xenomorph from the film. That was a shift that happened at the same time as I stepped off the film. A lot of that push came from the studio very high up; they were interested in doing something original and not one more franchise film. That really came to a head at the studio – the major push to focus on the new mythology of Prometheus and dial the Aliens as far back as we could came down from the studio.

Originally there was some chest-bursting action (in bed)! “I did have facehuggers in my original draft. David, as he began to get fascinated by the science of the Engineers, doesn’t deliberately contaminate Holloway with a drop of black liquid. Instead, Holloway hubristically removes his helmet in the chamber, is knocked unconscious, facehugged and wakes up not knowing what had been done to him, and stumbles back into the ship. In my draft, he returns to his cabin, is embraced by Shaw, who is delighted to see him having feared that he had died, and the two of them make love. And it’s while they’re making love that he bursts and dies. So that lovemaking sequence echoed my original lovemaking sequence where he explodes! It was messy.

I highly, highly, urge you to check out the entire interview at Empire Online. This is only the tip of the iceberg.



  • WHY DIDN’T THEY DO SOMETHING LIKE THIS?!!! Despite it being by Lindelof that is the movie Alien fans wanted!!

  • Keegsta

    Funny that everyone blames Lindelof, but it appears that it was the studio’s fault for being barely related to Alien. Shame on you Fox.

  • K-Dogg

    I, for one, am glad they didn’t do this. Prometheus is easily my favorite movie of the year, I loved how ambitious it is, the epic look it had on IMAX, and the fact that it was it’s own world/universe. In fact, kinda hated that the end had a xenomorph. Now please realize I say this as Aliens is one of my all time fave movies ever made. I thought Fassbender was amazing, Rapace as well (that cesarian scene is one for the ages). The reaction that everyone will have to this article is the problem, everyone wanted an Alien all-out movie, and were not interested in anything but. And in this day and age of the Internet, everyone wants everything spelled out for them, no questions left unanswered, without thinking for themselves. People forget that this is part 1 of 3, be patient. Imagine its 1978, Alien just hit theaters, man, half that shit would have left a tonne of questions, that the later movies helped explain. I just don’t understand all the hate for this one.

    • thatenddown

      I’m curious, K-Dogg: What questions are left at the end of Alien? It is a self-contained story that really didn’t need a sequel.

      • K-Dogg

        What are those facehuggers / Who was the dude in that ship / who sent the beacon….My point being that it’s ok to have questions that are not answered, plus, along the way (Aliens) we see how a facehugger comes to be. Kind of like Darko, I loved that movie, yet there are a shitload of questions. I like to think for myself. Some of the best Sci-Fi movies leave a huge amount for self-interpretation.

  • VictorCrowley

    Can’t say I would’ve been all for an Alien-like feel to the entire film, but a little more than just what we got at the end would’ve been nice. A few more little hints and nods here and there would not have damaged what the movie became at all IMO.

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