Alien Production Timeline August 1978

Leading from

still collating

Tuesday 1st August 1978
  1. Eddie finished the Alien feet and gave them to the plaster shop for casting. Patty worked on the six sets of teeth that Clinton gave them for chromium plating. Voysey finished the egg silo jetty and went to the plaster shop to execute the large details himself. The wheel for the cockpit is finished. Giger and Shirley work together on the connecting part between the shoulds and the head of Alien III.
  2. Andrew Ainsworth showed Giger one of the facehugger's metal fingers, and had a method of injecting zinc into a plaster or wax mold and wants to use it as a mold for the fingers of Alien III. He has not finished the mechanized facehugger, and has not even started on the Alien's transparent shell on the head
  3. Watling brought the mechanized head of Alien III to the studio to have the teeth replaced. The revised polyester tongue is in the plaster shop for casting. 
  4. Mia films the plasting of the quarter of the chest tube in the plaster shop and the facehugger in progress in Andrew's studio
Wednesday 2nd August 1978
  1. Alien Chestburster Shoot starts with the filming of the Kane's choking fit and blood spurt. (See: Alien: Kane starts to choke)
  2. Bolaji's statue with detachable arms arrives from the plaster shop. Giger isn't happy with the polyester casts being full of air bubbles and were badly glued together. The Facehugger is still not finished
  3. Giger worked on the model of the Alien Spacecraft for Brian Johnson and on the facial muscles for the Alien III. Visiting Andrew's studio, Giger sees what has happened to his facehugger with two skins on top and he is not happy.
  4. Final revised script from June 1978 up until October 4th 1978 for this day includes script revisions cover scenes 35-43. 60-67, 171 cont-174
  5. HR Giger: 2 August 1978, Shepperton Studios car park, First, for O'Bannon, I painted the egg of Allen 1, the Facehugger, in cross-section. Later, In Zürich, I changed thie picture, giving the egg a more organic looking (plate 363 II), Now I've reached the point of preparing a full-size mould for the 80-cm-high (2ft 6in) egg. A hollow plaster egg is to be made for me in the plasterer's shop from this mould, to use as a modeling base for the opening and the construction. (Giger's Alien, p46)
Thursday 3rd  August 1978
  1. Filming of scene with the chestburster erupting killing Kane. (See Setting up of the chestburster shot and chestburster scene: false start)
  2. Clinton Cavers blamed the fact that the Alien III was not finished on Giger, and convinces the people at the Dept. Office and it would be best if Giger were kept away from the people in the studio. So they propose to move Giger to the Art. Department. Eddie, Shirley and Patty couldn't work under his supervision and would do a better job without him.
  3. At this point, there is only the tail left to do and Giger is fed up and would rather just go home. He was being accused of being an artist and not enough of a realist to finish the Alien III and he has to be kept away from making changes. The Giger was showed his new studio. 
  4. Yaphet Kotto discovers a box covered in hieractics and hieroglyphs that would open into the form of a key and he would discover objects inside  (See: Yaphet discovers a box)
Friday 4th  August 1978
  1. Mia sets up Giger's studio. Giger painted of the egg silo and the cockpit. 
  2. The climax of the movie is filmed on C stage, which is the chestburster shoot. Roger Dicken was happy. 
  3. Giger lures Scott into Andrew's studio to show him what was happening with the facehugger, that was not to Giger's satisfaction. The skin was too thick and also the Alien III skin was not transparent. Incidently Mia Bonzanigo told a story about how Giger was threatening to go home and so she had to lure Ridley away from the other people to have a person to person chat with Giger to settle the situation and so I wonder if this was incident about luring Ridley into Andrew's studio might have been part of it.  So in Alien Makers 6 the story goes "One day, Giger said, "I want to see Ridley alone at my studio, and if he's not coming alone, I pack my bag and I go home, go and tell that."

     Okay, I went, I went to the stage where Ridley was working and I said "Ridley. now is the moment we have to act otherwise things are going wrong because Giger's very upset, he's very angry and he wants to talk to you alone without the whole people around"

    Ridley took his Walky Talky, gave that to his assistant who was looking liker, er er what are you doing, why are you are you going without me,

    And said "see you at the office" and then took me and we went to Giger's office and Giger wasn't there and so we drunk a sip of cognac and we had a nice chat Ridley and I, and after a while Giger arrived and so they could straighten out the things, the problems, Giger had, and he stayed, But Giger and Ridley, they went on very well together but they had no chance to, Giger was always somehow taken by people and Ridley was taken by people and it was not possible to.
Saturday 5th August 1978
  1. Andrew has wasted 500kg of rubber mix by mixing it with a powder for repelling water that turned it white. Andrew has come up with a metal mold for the hands to cast them as transparent, and Giger is curious. Mia begins to organizes the slide collection. 
  2. The rushes for the chestburster footage are watched , this leads to Derek Vanlint throwing up and Ron Cobb loosing all sense of coordination
Sunday 6th August 1978
  1. Mia finishes organising the slide collection. Giger works on the space craft and the Alien facial muscles.. Patty worked in the car park. Four heads with chromium plated teeth without tongues were finished. Shirly glued on the jaw and sawed off the hinges, forgetting that the teeth on the tongue have to be visible too, and so this had to be changed.
Monday  7th August 1978
  1. C stage. Scene 133, INT. MESS, more discussions on ways of killing the alien. The characters Dallas, Ripley, Ash, Lambert and Parker are involved.
  2. Garth and Clinton came to see Giger in his new studio and ask about Andrew. Andrew has made a metal mold for the hands but what he has created is no better than a rubber mould. 
  3. Giger worked on the face and brought it to the plaster shop for casting. Then Giger works on the egg opening to make it different from a vagina. Giger feels not so optimistic about finishing the Alien III. 
  4. Final revised script from June 1978 up until October 4th 1978 for this day includes script revisions cover scenes 151-155
Tuesday 8th  August 1978
  1. Filming on C stage, Scene 152, INT. MESS , Ripley assumes command. Scene 154, INT. MESS (dialogue to be incorporated within scene 152) and scene 1874 INT. MESS, Ash loses his head. The characters Ripley, Ash, Lambert and Parker are involved. Stunt doubles are used for Ripley, Ash, Lambert and Parker. A midget is used for Ash's torso. 
  2. Giger works on the Alien arms. Ridley comes over to inspect the samples and invite Giger  to see the rushes.
Wednesday 9th August 1978
  1. Continuing with the filming from August 8th
  2. Giger does photographic experiments on the three arms of Alien III to the C stage for photographic experiments. He takes a trip to a printer in Surbiton for the Alien book. Walter Bretcher arrives intending to get there at 9am, Mia shows him the stages and the work space and shows him some slides. 
  3. Bolaji Badejo joins Giger for lunch at The Kings Head. 
  4. In the afternoon, Giger watches the rushes from Alien for the shots of the astronauts boarding the derelict and the chestburster in action.
Thursday 10th August 1978
  1. Continuing with the filming from August 8th 
  2. Giger poses for photos by Walter Bretscher who plans to write an article. 
  3. Giger unhappy with Andrew's endless testing wants to go ahead and make the Alien III in latex
  4. Voysey works on the "space jockey" in the alien cockpit (By now Giger has started to refer it as the Space Jockey.)
  5. Final revised script from June 1978 up until October 4th 1978 for this day includes script revisions covering scene 174
Friday  11th  August 1978
  1. Filming on C stage. Scene 84, 84a INT.Infirmary - crew gather around Kane and try to remove the alien. Scene 85, INT. INFIRMARY CORRIDOR - acid eats through decks. Scene 89. INT INFIRMARY - face hugger would heal. Characters Dallas, Kane, Ripley, Ash, Parker, Brett and Lambert. Special effects supply the Facehugger and acid leak. Art department supply practical operating table. Makeup supply blood trickle on Kane's face. Video department supply Readouts. (See Face Hugger in The Infirmary and Alien: Outside The Medical Bay)
  2. Andrew came up with "wings" for the alien that are transparent but useless because they are lacking in detail. 
  3. Voysey starts working on the egg in the plaster shop

Saturday,  12th  August 1978
  1. Rest day
  2. Giger worked on lettering for Alien. 
  3. He finds that the alien moulds are in a bad state after what Andrew has done with them
Sunday,  13th  August 1978
  1. Rest day
  2. Mia reveals that Ridley is discussing the possibility of working on another film with Giger.
  3. Work is being done on a polyester Alien III.  
  4. Giger continues to work on the Alien lettering

schedule for August 7th to August 13th 1978
Source Charles Lippincott's Facebook January 1st 2017

Monday,  14th  August 1978
  1. Filming on C stage, continuing with what was being filmed on August 11th 
  2. Giger turned in the Alien Hieroglyphs for test filming. 
  3. There are rehearsals in B stage for the Alien III , and the stuntman was pulled up with chains attached to skating boots.

Tuesday  15th  August 1978
  1. Filming on C stage, continuing with what was being filmed on August 11th 
  2. Filming the Facehugger in the helmet on the C stage.
  3. H R Giger: 15th August 1978, Shepperton Studios. The Facehugger has been finished by Dicken according to my initial directives. Not a trace of transparency but, in view of the means at our disposal, a perfect job. Scott's comment: I can work with that. Once again, I am surprised at how a material like latex, with a bit of jelly, smoke and a few strings ( to make it move like a puppet) can give the illusion of life. (Giger's Alien, p54)  (See The Facehugger)

Wednesday, 16th  August 1978 

  1. Filming on C stage.Scene 93 INT. Infirmary " Why did you let him in?" involving the characters Kane, Ripley, Ash . Special effects supply the facehugger, Video department supply the readouts. Makeup supply the sucker marks Scene 97, INT. Corridor outside infirmary, and the Alien is no longer on Kane's head, with the character Dallas involved. Scene 97A, INT. Infirmary - Facehugger dead - Ash places it in Stasis tube. Special effects supply the dead Facehugger. This filming would stretch over into the 17th (See Face Hugger in The Infirmary
  2. Film tests of the hieroglyphic paintings have been completed
  3. The face hugger is filmed on C stage. 
  4. Eddie showed Giger the latex hand and tail of the Alien III in the car park.
  5. Engine Sections Det- no.2 blueprints are drawn for the Narcissus exterior 
Thursday,  17th  August 1978
  1. Continuation with shooting plan for the 16th
  2. Situation with the Hieroglyphs reaches a climax (See Placement of Life Cycle Tableau)
  3. Filming of John Hurt as Kane lying in the firmary with the facehugger over his face. 
17th August 1978

Friday,  18th  August 1978
  1. Stage C. Filming on A deck. scene 116, INT. corridor outside infirmary, Kane awake. Scene 175 INT infirmary "We've got lest than 12 hours Oxygene left", using the characters Dallas, Kane, Ripley, Ash, Lambert, Parker, and Brett. Makeup involves sucker marks. Video department would supply readouts
  2. Giger receives the lower body and tail from the plaster shop .
  3. Voysey and his people begin to create the space jockey's cockpit in Styrofoam. 
  4. In the carpark the alien stunt costume is being tinkered with. 
  5. Andrew received £1000 for his work that was not enough to cover his expenses and so he threatens not to finish the transparent shell on the Alien head
Saturday,  19th  August 1978
  1. A rest day
  2. Giger coloured the alien egg black and received the Alien III from the plaster shop to paint black and watched television for seven straight hours

Sunday,  20th  August 1978
  1. A rest day.
  2. Giger spent the day modelling the alien III with Patty. Patty informs him that they didn't they didn't have any time for them left at the plaster shop
Monday,  21st  August 1978
  1. Filming on Exterior Planet landscape set on Stage H. Scene 54pt, the trio head off in a storm. Scene 55pt. V.O. Scene 56pt.Trio shelter beneath rock. The characters Dallas, Kane and Lambert would be involved, with doubles. There would be adults and children for space suits. Special Effects would supply wind and storm, and geysers. Art/Special Effects would supply camera in simulated helmet. Video would be required for blister screen insert
  2. Carlo Rambaldi and his crew arrive with the heads that resemble ape faces. (The making of Alien by Rinzler mentions that...) Two are mechanical ones for closeups, and a lightweight, non mechanical head for long shots.
  3. Mia is coming back from Zurich. 
  4. Andrew finally created some usable alien parts but Garth and Carroll can not be convinced and will not believe any more of Andrew's promises. 
  5. The stuntman costume does not please Giger.

schedule for the 14th to 21st August 1978
Source: Charles Lippincott on Facebook (January 2017)

Tuesday,  22nd  August 1978
  1. Mia photographed Carlo Rambaldi in the A stage and the H stage.
  2. Giger received the contact prints by Bob Penn

Wednesday,  23rd August 1978

Thursday,  24th August 1978

Friday,  25th August 1978

Saturday,  26th August 1978

Sunday  27th August 1978

Monday  28th August 1978

Tuwasay 29th August 1978

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