The 1979 movie Alien delivered some of the most iconic designs in horror film history. Of course, it wasn’t an easy process, and many different concepts were considered before H.R. Giger’s designs were used. Now, however, an original design for the Xenomorph in Alien has resurfaced online.
The illustration is based on screenwriter Dan O’Bannon’s original script for the film. Ron Cobb designed the piece prior to H.R. Giger being brought onto the project. And while Cobb’s original design was not used, he did make one major contribution to the Xenomorph as we know it today. He’s credited with giving the creature its trademark acidic blood.
Now, as you can see below, it’s worth noting that Cobb’s alien has eyes, tendrils, and two long appendages for “fingers.” It’s a bug-like, squid-like creature that brings to mind “Cthulhu” or what would eventually become “Brundlefly” in 1986’s The Fly. A fun design, certainly, but one clearly overshadowed by Giger’s work.
Here’s the concept art featuring the original Alien design which has resurfaced online via social media platforms like X:
And this is Ron Cobb’s Alien design … could have been just another b-movie before Giger got involved pic.twitter.com/DSsgszszsP
— Hedgehog Hoopoe (@hedgehoghoopoe) October 15, 2023
It’s definitely interesting to see how many concepts were considered before Giger’s design was chosen. Alien could have very easily become just another B-Movie. But instead director Ridley Scott and artist H.R. Giger provided a stunning array of monsters and visuals to elevate the material. And one can’t help but credit Dan O’Bannon with writing such a great, Lovecraftian screenplay in the first place. Their combined work has allowed the franchise to continue to this day.
Stay tuned to ScreenGeek for any additional Alien updates as we have them. With a new film and television series in production, there are certainly more exciting tidbits to come. In the meantime, at least we can appreciate the work everyone contributed to the series so far.