‘Alien, the eighth passenger’ was a success at its premiere in 1979, and continues to be today, 43 years later. Many were responsible for the prestige achieved by the feature film: Ridley Scott, the first on the list for his role as director, along with the artist HR Giger, responsible for designing the iconic monster that would open an entire franchise based on this strange being, and the screenwriter Dan O’Bannon. In addition, a great cast led by Sigourney Weaver, who gave life to Ellen Ripley, one of the greatest heroines in film history.
During a recent interview on WTF with Marc Maron, the actress reflected on this role and how it changed her life, one of her first films being responsible for catapulting her to stardom. WEaver admitted that she had complications when starting in the film industry, however, this did not bother her much because she was happy doing theater. In fact, Weaver revealed that when he read the script for ‘Alien, the eighth passenger,’ “I wasn’t very interested.”
Originally, the script had ten male characters, but it was rewritten with the intention that the survivor would be a woman since, according to the actress, “nobody in their wildest dreams would think they would end up being a girl”. Still, she was shortlisted for her role, though she thinks Fox didn’t want her in the film: “I was an unknown. I think there were big names trying to get that role.” Also, remember meeting Scott wearing a pair of “hooker boots” and a look that can not remember at all. What he does remember is that he rejected parts of the script as soon as he met the director: “We had a nice conversation about the script, which I was pretty critical of. I said, ‘Hey, this is pretty bleak, I don’t know what to think about this love scene, would you really do it while this thing is going around?’ Anyway, we had a good conversation.”
The result was quite positive for the actress, not only because she was chosen as the protagonist, but also because the sexual scene was eliminated, tilting the study in her favor. Even so, at the beginning of the recording, she did not have the feeling that the film was going to become a blockbuster and a reference in the cinema. Therefore, he pretended that it was an off-Broadway project: “I was doing that all the time because I was like, ‘Look, it’s not a really legit movie. It’s like a little dark movie.’ So I’m still in my world.”
Despite all of the above, Weaver took the journey undertaken by her character, Ellen Ripley, very seriously, in fact, having a conversation about her performance with her co-star Ian Holm. “I remember saying to him, ‘Hey, do you think Ripley knows what she’s doing? Do you think she thinks she’s right?’ And he said, ‘Yeah. I think she knows she’s right.’ “I don’t think she thinks so. I think it’s a stupid bet, and she knows it. She knows she has to keep going, waiting, because I think that’s the story.”remembered the actress.
“It’s a story about an ordinary person, about someone who believes that the trip is going to go one way and has a manual of how things should go. She is a young ensign and she has to give up all that and suck it up. For me it’s the history of the whole world. Especially when it comes to a woman, because she doesn’t just whimper in a corner for help, she has to do it herself.. That’s why I’m an actress, that’s what I think women do. We do hard stuff all the time. And I love telling that story.” Weaver finished proudly.