Alien nearly had a much bleaker ending

Director Ridley Scott had some terrifying plans on how to end his 1979 sci-fi horror classic

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The Independent Culture

1979's Alien has already firmly found its place as a classic of the horror and sci-fi genres, spawning a franchise that continues with next month's Alien: Covenant

However, Ridley Scott has revealed to Entertainment Weekly the film's original ending, one that's somehow bleaker and more terrifying than what eventually made it screen. 

Instead of the film's climax seeing Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) fighting off a xenomorph, before recording a captain's log entry and entering hypersleep, the film was meant to end with her sudden and brutal death. 

"I thought that the alien should come in, and Ripley harpoons it and it makes no difference, so it slams through her mask and rips her head off." Scott described. The camera would then cut to a shot of its tentacles pressing buttons on the dashboard as, "it would mimic Captain Dallas (Tom Skerritt) saying, ‘I’m signing off.'"

However, an ending quite that dark inevitably caused tensions with studio execs, as he pitched the idea to 20th Century Fox over the phone from on set at Shepperton Studios; revealing, "the first executive from Fox arrived on set within 14 hours, threatening to fire me on the spot. So we didn’t do that [ending]."

Trailer for new Alien: Covenant film released

Surely, a saving grace for anyone who's a fan of the film's 1986 follow-up, Aliens

Alien: Covenant will be released in the UK on 12 May.

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