"Alien" is one of the greatest science fiction films of all time. Now you can get the full story of what went on behind the scenes with this new book by J. W. Rinzler.
When Disney acquired Fox in a sale, I thought the coolest thing about it was that the Alien Queen now was basically a Disney Princess. But I did have my worries that movies like the Alien franchise would fall by the wayside since they were usually bleak, violent, and not suitable for children. Unless you want to scare some bad kids.
Where is the book available?
The book is being sold at the San Diego Comic-Con but will head to most retailers next month. So rejoice fellow Alien lovers. The author of the book, J.W. Rinzler spoke with the Nerdist recently about writing the definitive account of the production of the first film. His book features interviews, concept art, and dozens of never-before-seen photographs supplied by Fox and the filmmakers.
I cherry-picked some awesome nuggets from the interview and will post them here!
J.W. Rinzler interview
One of the most interesting pieces of information I gleaned was how one even starts a project like this one. In fact, I was enthralled learning how Rinzler started compiling information and deciding who to interview first. As Rinzler says,
"For Alien, it different from most books in that Steve Asbell, the production executive at Fox, had a special relationship with Ridley Scott because they’d done several movies together. Ridley Scott’s stories are kind of driving the book, so he wanted me to talk to him as soon as I could or as soon as Ridley Scott could. But then I did a bunch of research and didn’t talk to anybody else, like Terry Rawlings and Ivor Power, until I had it much better idea of what was going on."
Much like a mission in space, this takes planning.
The movie came out in 1979, so sources are beginning to...well...die off. Rinzler spent a lot of time talking to as many people as he could. Rinzler goes in-depth on this point,
"There was a really good article that Cinefantastique did all about the screenplay “argument” which eventually the WGA had to settle as to who was going to get credit. And then going into the Fox archives, it’s just kind of like pulling the lever on a slot machine – you don’t know what’s going to show up – but there was some good stuff in there. There was a long memo that Peter Beale wrote, who was the Fox executive in charge over at Shepperton Studios, and then somebody gave me Peter Beale’s contact information and he consented to be interviewed, and it was the first time that anybody had spoken with him. I spoke to him for maybe two hours, all really important for the book."
To get the rest of the details and see the rest of the photos, you'll have to order the book from Titan Books. The official synopsis is as follows...
"In 1979 a movie legend was born, as Twentieth Century-Fox and director Ridley Scott unleashed Alien – and gave audiences around the world the scare of their lives. To celebrate the movie’s fortieth anniversary, author J.W. Rinzler (The Making of Star Wars) tells the whole fascinating story of how Alien evolved from a simple idea in the mind of writer Dan O’Bannon into one of the most memorable sci-fi horror thrillers of all time. With brand new interviews with Ridley Scott and other key members of the original production crew, and featuring many never-before-seen photographs and artworks from the archives, The Making of Alien is the definitive work on this masterpiece of popular cinema."
What do you most hope to see most and read in Rinzler's book? Let us know down in the comments.