a) Coming aboard
Simon Deering came aboard when his friend Dennis Lowe told him that they were looking for people on Alien.
Dennis said to Simon said "See Brian Johnson"
And so Simon did. Brian Johnson took a look at the top two pictures on his pack and said "When can you start?"
Simon replied "Monday week", and then went to Paris to celebrate and then came back to start two weeks later.
b) Put to work on the Nostromo
They had a drawing by Ron Cobb on a yellow piece of paper on the wall to work from first. They didn't actually get a lot of directions in terms of adding the additional pieces such as the wiggets etcetera.
Simon didn't see a drawing plan of what they built and it was very different from the other ones. He never even got to see one of the vague sketches in pencil that Ridley did on the wooden bench. But having said that, during all of this, he was smoking a lot of weed.
From then on in Ridley's visits, as Simon Deering noticed, he would start making sketches on the bench to give the modelers some idea of what he wanted, look at the Nostromo and utter words such as "Fucking great! Fucking that! How about a few more bits sticking out here and a few more bits sticking out here!' and "can we try something like that?" before going off again.
It got to a point when someone said "don't bother copying that picture any more"
- Simon Deering: My
friend Dennis said they're looking for people on Alien, so I went along
and he said see Brian Johnson which I did and Brian Johnson took er,
just looked at the top two pictures on my pack and er and said, when can
you start and I said, ah, Monday, er no, Monday week and then I went to
Paris to celebrate and then came back and started two weeks later, but
it was unusual and we were immediately, I was immediately put into one
workshop with er, it's very hazy actually the beginning of that, who I
was with, there was about three us and it was quite early pre-production
and we went into, one of the ones, the studio workshop where we were
building the refinery and there was I think, three or four of us and we
took a tower each and I remember my tower, was covering it with red
oxide part constructed girders, yeah, but the studio itself was a
wonderful place to work in, never forget it, yeah.
(Alien Makers I documentary by Dennis Lowe)
- Simon Deering: Yeah, I remember the first er, the first instructions were, we had this yellow piece of paper, we had the Ron Cobb drawing I believe it was on the wall and we , we didn't get a lot of direction to start with, which was interesting and fun, you know. we used to have er, my favourite memory of it was Ridley Scott, who'd just come in every now and again, look at what we were doing, he'd start making sketches on the bench and look at it and go "fucking great! Fucking that! How about a few more bits sticking out here and a few more bits sticking out there", and "can we try something like this?' And then he'd go off again, and we'd just play and just make it up, and it was pretty soon that somebody said still "don't bother copying that picture any more" and then it was er, I believe that's when the cut went wrong in the carpenters, and I started building a frame, I'm not sure there were ever a drawing erm, of exactly what they built because because it was very different to the er, the other, the other ones as I remember, yeah, (Alien Makers I documentary by Dennis Lowe)