The Resurrection of Ripley

leading from: 

 


Still being collated

a) The Giler solution

Alien 3 had been filmed, Ripley has died. How can another Alien movie starring Sigourney Weaver as Ripley go on?

Sigourney said to David Giler on the night of the wrap party on Alien 3  "I'm gonna miss this character"

Giler replied "don't be silly, this character is you know, she'd just had her chest ripped out in a pit of fire and you know and all the rest of it. So we start Alien four , we go to some laboratory some place and they open up a drawer, and they've got your fingernail clippings in there. And they clone you and you're a whole new one. "

"Really?" replied Sigourney

Giler continued "We could bully them. If anyone wants to bring you back we can do it."

Sigourney wasn't saying no to this but on the other hand, she wondered just how many times could the character of Ripley wake up to the same situation over and over again and win, and then go back to sleep and then have the same thing happen in the next movie

Giler would later have somebody came to him and say "I think they are talking about making another Alien", and when somebody came to ask him how he thought it should be done, he would have an idea.






b) Buffy The Alien Slayer?
Fox executive Jorge Saralegui wondering if the audience would buy an Alien movie without its leading lady. It was known that Weaver had wanted Ripley killed off and had very little interest in returning to the franchise, so Saralegui decided to bring back Newt, the little girl Ripley saved, instead. Although Newt died at the beginning of Alien 3, Saralegui's idea was that she would be cloned because of the survival skills she demonstrated in Aliens, and would be used by Ripley's former employer to track down the alien for their own research. The cloned Newt, in effect, would become a Buffy-like character - a young girl embued with special skills and strengths to take out a particular enemy.






c) Reaching out to Joss

After receiving the go-ahead from the studio to develop a treatment, Saralegui reached out to Joss, because the Buffy movie script demonstrated his ability to bring just such a character to life. Joss was incredibly excited and agree to take on the project. This was the chance of a lifetime - a golden opportunity to the right path of a favourite franchise that had gone astray by writing a script that would put it on a path to glory once again.

Intially 20th Century Fox wasn't sure that they could get Sigourney Weaver to play the role of Ripley again. So Joss was asked to write the script without Ripley who, after all, had died at the end of Alien 3. So Joss was asked to write the script without Ripley who, had died at the end of Alien 3. He banged out a script without Ripley and was pleased by the result

d) The Return of Ripley

A few months later the studio panicked, having read their thirty-page film treatment, studio executives told Joss and Saralegui that they found the reboot idea exciting, but they were worried about the success of an Alien film without Weaver. They made her a deal she couldn't refuse and asked Joss to go back to the drawing board.

At first, Joss rebelled against the idea of scrapping their Newt concept to revive Ripley, he thought "bullshit , she's dead". 
However he was also a longtime fan of the Alien series and this was his chance to be involved, so he eventually went back to the drawing board. With only the parameters of "Scary like Alien. Exciting like Aliens. Add in Ripley" to guide him, Joss found it much more difficult than his first go-around.

He came around to thinking that that reviving Ripley could be very powerful, But, much as he tried to do in season six of Buffy, Joss wanted to make her resurrection real, and not without a price.




e) Whedon has a story

Joss's script for Alien: Resurrection takes place two hundred years after Alien 3. Scientists aboard a military spaceship have used a genetic sample from the prison planet to create a clone of Ellen Ripley, in the hopes of harvesting the alien queen that was growing inside of her and breeding more aliens for study. Later, a ragtag crew of mercenaries arrives to deliver human bodies, which the scientists plan to use for the alien incubation. Call, an android with the group, recognizes Ripley and tries to kills her, suspecting the truth about the clone's purpose. Unfortunately, the queen has already been extracted and the breeding process is underway. When the captive aliens escape and kill most of the military personal, the ship's emergency system kicks in , sending the vessel back to Earth. Ripley and the mercenaries struggle to find a way to destroy the ship before the aliens reach Earth.




f) Presenting the resurrection

Joss knew if he was going to bring such a beloved character back to life and have the audience accept it, he needed the resurrection to feel real, not just like a sci-fi metaphor. He wasn't just writing the story in the form of bringing Ripley back for the sake of making a movie. The resurrection had to be the central issue of the movie, that fact that they could bring her back, and once one does that, everything is different. 

When someone comes back from the dead, especially where death is the ultimate threat, one can't say "It's okay, anybody can die and come back".  Joss needed to acknowledge the difficulty viewers would have in accepting Ripley's rebirth as a clone by making it hard for the character herself to accept.  

Joss found it important to show that it was a very tortuous, grotesque process so that people will viscerally feel what it's like to be horribly reborn in a lab. And then the whole questions of what is she raised. Is she human? Has she changed? There is the factor that she was pregnant with an alien. Is she all woman? Is there a little something wrong there? There are a lot of issues. 




Source Quotes
  1. David Giler: If everyone loves this movie, there will be a fourth one. It's science fiction, there are nine million ways to bring Ripley back, or to do other stories. (CFQ:V22,:N6:p14)
  2. David Giler: Sigourney told me on the night of the rap party on Alien Three that she was gonna miss this character. I said "don't be silly, this character is you know, she'd just had her chest ripped out in a pit of fire and you know and all the rest of it. I said so we start Alien three, we go to some laboratory some place and they open up a drawer, and they've got your fingernail clippings in there. And they clone you and you're a whole new one." "Really?" "We could bully them. If anyone wants to bring you back we can do it." And it's pretty much like that. Somebody came to me now and said, I think they are talking about making another Alien and you know, somebody comes and asks me how I think it should be done, I've got an idea. (report from the interview of Alien Evolutions)
  3. Starburst: So this is finally the end of the line for Ripley?
    Sigourney Weaver: Well, If Walter (Hill) and David (Giler) and all those guys can come up with some amazing scenario where Ripley could be reconstituted from her finger nail clippings, I'm  not saying no. It's just that how many times can the same character wake up to the same situation over and over again and win, and then go back to sleep and then have the same thing happen in the next movie. ((Starburst #170 "Sigourney Weaver: Three Times a Lady" interview Part 3)
  4. How Ripley was brought back
    a) GEDIMAN: How did we get you? Blood samples from Fiori 16. On ice. (Alien Resurrection script)
    b)  CALL: Christie, she's not human.  Wren cloned her because she was carrying an alien in her.  (Alien Resurrection script)
  5. See also Joss Whedon: The Genius behind buffy section
  6. See also: Joss Whedon : Geek King Of The Universe

Joss Whedon injects vampiric blood into the script

Leading from:
Alien Resurrection
a.) Joss Whedon who wrote the script for Buffy The Vampire Slayer and produced the series by that name wrote the script for Alien Resurrection. He introduced a new alien entity into the story called "The Newborn".

People who have heard about his work might wonder what personal themes he has brought into the film and assume that he somehow integrated the idea of vampires into the script. The newborn turns out to be an albino alien creature that drains the blood from its victims.

However the vampiric quality of this entity was soon written out of the story when they couldn't afford to create a newborn as he had imagined it. At present no artwork depicting Joss's vision of the newborn is know to the public.

  1. The description of the entity in the script is as follows
    "An alien, to be sure, but nothing we've seen so far, its forelegs arch 
    out of its back like spiders legs, its back legs set on enormous 
    haunches, thick and powerful.
    Its head is long, eyeless, like the others, but along its white expanse 
    red veins, coming out of the skin and running like thick black hairs to 
    the back.
    It has retracted pincers at the side of head that come out when its 
    tongue does.
    Its much bigger the the others, nearly the size of the queen herself.
    And it's bone white."
  2. It's method of killing involves draining the blood as shown here when it kills a soldier
    "pincers SWING out and pin either side of his head.. His eyes go wide as: Its tongue SHOOTS into his throat. Stays there, and we watch it drain the blood from his body. We can see it, see its stomach swell, red tinged, as his body goes"