a) Involved in Alien vs Predator film production
Dave Dorman the freelance illustrator talked about how 20th Century Fox/Dark Horse approached him for a design for the Alien/ Predator hybrid and he created a painting around the mid 1990s as concept work for the very first iteration of the Aliens Predator movie when Dark Horse was co-producing with 20th Century Fox. However this version of the project was shelved.
The work that he did for them, as is most work with film companies, was work for hire, so even though that particular production was abandoned, all of the work that was produced went into the 20th Century Fox archives. When Aliens v. Predator 2 came out, and to a lesser extent, one of the Aliens v. Predator video games, they utilised imagery that Dave Dorman noticed was very close to the designs that I created for the initial abandoned film. Technically, he couldn't say that he created the imagery that they used, because it was “work for hire”, and was keen to point out the similarities between his work and the final Predalien design.
c) Designing the creature
His idea about the Predalien design was that both the Predator and the Alien were both humanoids in basic structure. Obviously their heads are different, but he wanted to keep the recognizable elements of both head designs and try to work them together for the creature. Thus it was a matter of taking bits and pieces, just as one would with mixed breeds of dogs, where one would recognize elements within the creature, but not necessarily be more one breed than the other.
- Dave Dorman : So I'm having breakfast this morning (Friday Oct 26) and I open the USA Today
and go right to the entertainment section... (Front page...Bleh!...
Lets get to the real news!!). I pull out the section and unfold it and
there jumping out at me is a photo of an Alien-ish creature. But wait... there's something different about it. I scan over to the headline and the article is about the new Aliens v. Predator film coming out this December. Cool. So I start to read the article, but my eye keeps going back to the photo. Why does this Predalien creature look so familiar? This is the first official posts of the creature...
Then my mind goes back... to the mid 1990's. I was hired by 20th Century Fox/Dark Horse Productions to develop some Predalien creature designs for the (then viable) first incarnation of Aliens v Predator. I did a number of designs, including the one shown here. Well much to my surprise here I am looking at my designs, in the flesh, so to speak! I have posted here my original designs and the photos showing the quite distinct similarity!I have no hard feelings about this. As a freelance illustrator I am aware of contractual obligations and the "work for hire" clause that is in most of these. (For those who don't know, the "work for hire" clause means basically that the work done for any particular company is completely owned by them. I sign over all rights to them on completion of the work. So they can do anything they want with it without paying me any more above the original cost of the work). So I had produced these designs for Fox and then they scrapped the production. The art went into the vaults. And I thought they would never see the light of day...
Well it appears someone might have done some digging because the similarity is striking. It would have been nice to be acknowledged for the work. I doubt I will get any credit. But I wanted to post this to show my fans and the world that sometimes lost work isn’t lost after all and good designs will always work, no matter how old they are!! (davedorman.blogspot.co.uk/2007/10/)
- galactic-squid:You are credited as creating the first art of the Predalien, does that mean you actually created the creatures look?
Dave Dorman: I did Predalien designs for the very first iteration of the Aliens Predator movie way back in the 1990′s when Dark Horse was co-producing with 20th Century Fox. The work that I did for them, as is most work with film companies, was work for hire, so even though that particular production was abandoned, all of the work that was produced went into the 20th Century Fox archives. When Aliens v. Predator 2 came out, and to a lesser extend, one of the Aliens v. Predator video games, they utilised imagery that was VERY CLOSE to the designs that I created for the initial abandoned film. Technically, I can’t say that I created the imagery that they used, because it was “work for hire” but as I have displayed on my blog, I am just displaying the similarities in the designs. (galactic-squid.com/)
- Q: In your blog, you discuss how the final designs for the Predalien in Alien vs Predator: Requiem bear a strong resemblance to your early designs for Alien vs Predator in the mid-nineties. I'm interested to hear more about your experience working with Fox on the project. Can you expand on that?
A: They asked me to design a creature for what was supposed to be the original Aliens v. Predator movie and so I produced a series of drawings and a painting for them as work-for-hire. The project was shelved, and all of my artwork went into their files.
Q: I'd like to hear more about your approach designing the Predalien. What elements did you feel you had to keep of both characters and what did you feel could be left out?
A: They are both humanoid in their basic structure. Obviously, the heads are different, so I wanted to keep the recognizable elements of both head designs and try to work them together for the creature. Then it was just a matter of taking bits and pieces, like you would mixed breeds of a dog, where you would recognize elements within the creature, but not necessarily be more one breed than the other. (http://www.thegeektwins.com/)