a. O'Bannon's star map
|'The Outer' rim based upon the map from the Alien script|
(Using 50 lightyears from Earth map by R Powell)
b. Reference to the Betty and Barney Hill abduction case
By the map of "The Outer", since the Nostromo has not reached the rim of this area but is supposed to be near it, it has roughly 20 light years to go before it gets to Zeta II Reticuli. In the movie the star system was only again. However it is likely that O'Bannon included it as a landmark in deep space as a reference to the Betty and Barney Hill abduction case that was being talked about a lot in the 1970s because of this booklet called the "Zeta Reticuli Incident" by Terence Dickinson released about the incident that contained essays by such notable people such as Carl Sagan making his point of view known (see virtual copies: http://www.nicap.org/articles/hillzeta.htm and http://www.gravitywarpdrive.com/Zeta_Reticuli_Incident.htm) about the likelihood that a star map seen by Betty Hill was correct or not that showed a similarity to the positions of Earth in relation to Zeta I and II Reticuli and that booklet contained a table that listed all known stars within a radius of 54 light-years that are single or part of a wide multiple star system, which were then the 46 nearest stars similar to the Sun. Here we have the mention of the the 54 light years radius. Terence Dickinson used the '69 edition of the Gliese catalogue, which logged stars up to 22 parsecs (71.75599772 light years) out,
Incidently a TV movie about the Betty and Barney Hill abduction experience came out in 1975 called The UFO Incidence, starring James Earl Jones and this was from a time when not that many were known about.
c) In O'Bannon's early draft and the revised final draft from June to October 1978, it was decided that where the source of the transmission being planetoid was to be found at Ascension: 6 minutes 32 seconds, Declination: -39 degrees 2 seconds. If we used that as coordinates looking at the sky from Earth, we find nothing there, although we find that it's between the areas of the constellation of the Phoenix and the sculptor. What might have been the idea behind the co-ordinates? Or was this supposed to be where it was in relation to the Nostromo with the ship at the centre?