Giger's Alien I facehugger version IV

leading from

Still Collating

Alien I Facehugger version IV (work 379) (1978)
a) Ideas
Giger's idea was that the creature was going to be very smooth and slimy with eight long, fine but
strong fingers, as if it were made from two hands and the fingers would be at the front, however the main difference between his idea and the final one was that his was going to be translucent.

A 2nd version of the painting found
online but with a rounder body.

b) Attempting to construct
He started building the chestburster and the facehugger, he had to give up on the chestburster, it was known that his design for this was going in the wrong direction however which left him unsatisfied with it, but the the reason he gave up on the facehugger was that the producers wanted him to get the big Alien finished in time.

A 3rd version of the painting found online but with an even rounder body (
Source Quote
  1. HR Giger:The first creature is like a crab sitting in the egg, I worked as an industrial designer in Zurich, so when they told me what the alien had to do, I could see the beast in terms of its func- tions. I designed the face-hugger with a tightly coiled tail so it could jump out of its egg, using the tail as a spring. I gave the first one a tail the shape of a spring, because its function commanded that it could jump out at the face. And also two hands so it could grab a hold of the head. (Cinescape vol 3,#9)
  2. HR Giger: Later on he said that, er, I should do it smaller, so I think something with human hands is always scary , so I , I had the finger, long fingers what is the most important part of the facehugger, and then it's a part, there's the little sexual like, yuh, and erm, the tube for erm that this beast has to... to... to... put in the... in the mouth, and then late, I had this hands in front, and then Dan O'Bannon draw them side... sidewards, that was better (Alien Quadrology  documentry)
  3. HR Giger: At school I worked as an industrial designer so everything must have a function. The Facehugger was determined through its function. You have to show that. I was thinking that something jumps out and then holds onto someone's face needs fingers or hands. Normally if someone is sitting on your face, you can't breathe through your nose, so you automatically open your mouth. Then the monster goes down. So it looked a little bit like a crab or a spider. I like long fingers, so it had these long fingers, then two hands and a spiral tail. That was it, The hands hold onto Kane's face and the tail wraps around his neck.(Clive Barker's A-Z of Horror, p70


  1. Duchamp's 'Hat Rack' & 'Fountain' - possible influence on facehugger & space helmet?

    1. Sounds like a fun idea even if I can't make a direct connection, although Duchamp's Fountain ought to have inspired Giger in his artwork.