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Official Site: Twentieth Century Fox
The Alien (also known as a Xenomorph XX121 or Internecivus raptus) is a fictional endoparasitoid extraterrestrial species that is the antagonist of the Alien film series. The species made its debut in the film Alien (1979) and reappeared in the sequels Aliens (1986), Alien 3 (1992), and Alien Resurrection (1997). It also featured in the crossover films Alien vs. Predator (2004) and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem (2007), with the skull of one of the creatures appearing briefly in Predator 2 (1990). Similar creatures of slightly different designs such as the "Deacon" make a brief appearance in the Ridley Scott film Prometheus (2012) along with the "Neomorph" and a variation of the Xenomorph known as a "Praetomorph" which appears in the sequel Alien: Covenant (2017). In addition, the Alien appears in various literature and video game spin-offs from the franchises.
The Alien design is credited to Swiss surrealist and artist H. R. Giger, originating in a lithograph titled Necronom IV and refined for the series's first film, Alien. The practical effects for the Alien's head were designed and constructed by Italian special effects designer Carlo Rambaldi. The species's design and life cycle have been extensively augmented, sometimes inconsistently, throughout each film.
Unlike many other extraterrestrial races in science fiction (such as the Daleks and Cybermen in Doctor Who, or the Klingons and Borg in Star Trek), the Aliens are not sapient tool-makers: They lack a technological civilization of any kind, and are instead primal, predatory creatures with no higher goals than the propagation and self-preservation of their own species, including the elimination of other lifeforms that may pose a threat to their existence. Like wasp or termite, Aliens are eusocial, with a single fertile breeding a caste of warriors, workers, or other specialist strains. The Aliens' biological life cycle involves traumatic implantation of endoparasitoid larvae inside living hosts; these "chestburster" larvae erupt from the host's body after a short incubation period, rapidly mature from juvenile into adulthood within hours, and seek out more hosts for implantation.
The script for the 1979 film Alien was initially drafted by Dan O'Bannon and Ronald Shusett. Dan O'Bannon drafted an opening in which the crew of a mining ship are sent to investigate a mysterious message on an alien planet. He eventually settled on the threat being an alien creature; however, he could not conceive of an interesting way for it to get onto the ship. Inspired after waking from a dream, Shusett said, "I have an idea: the monster screws one of them", planting its egg in his body, and then bursting out of his chest. Both realized the idea had never been done before, and it subsequently became the core of the film. "This is a movie about alien interspecies rape," O'Bannon said in the documentary Alien Evolution. "That's scary because it hits all of our buttons." O'Bannon felt that the symbolism of "homosexual oral rape" was an effective means of discomforting male viewers.
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