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Tuesday, June 11, 2019

ALIEN THE PLAY: In North Bergen High everyone can hear you scream

Last month marked the fortieth anniversary of one of my most favorite films: Ridley Scott's Alien.  It's one of the most perfect science-fiction and/or horror movies in the history of anything.  It's one that often there is some detail that I missed during all the dozens of previous viewings.  Like, it was a mistake for Dallas to let the Nostromo lift off from LV-426 without its systems fully working on the lower decks: they could have detected the creature that much faster and without any further loss of life!  Patience is a virtue, kiddies.

A few months ago in March, Alien may have been given its greatest tribute ever.  A group of students and their instructors at North Bergen High School in New Jersey premiered their production of Alien The Play.

And these young men and women... yowza!!  They pulled off the impossible.  And with a dire minimum of materials to make the costumes and sets out of apparently.  They made an on-stage theatrical adaptation of Alien.  Including the Space Jockey, the chestburster, and the xenomorph itself.

Photos of the performances went viral across Twitter and Instagram and that Facebook thingy.  Tongues were wagging.  Very quickly word of it reached Ridley Scott himself, who forwarded along a few thousand bucks for the kids to run an encore performance.  That happened a few weeks ago... and who showed up but "Ellen Ripley" herself, Sigourney Weaver.

As I've come to understand it, there's a video in the works using footage spliced from four cameras that captured the magic.  But if you wish, you can watch Alien The Play right now.  Click on the link below and behold the spectacle of this very faithful (and at times creatively funny) work of high school drama department horror:

Make some popcorn and stream it to your high-def set if you can, peeps.  Turn off the lights.  And prepared to pick your jaw off the floor.


Hey Jude the Lesser said...

Jeebus Cripes Crispies! That is the mother of all high school drama productions!! They should do The Thing next.

Chris Knight said...

I've some ideas about adapting Blade Runner for the stage. Would love to present it to my old community theatre guild. They could use the old props from Children Of Eden to recreate Animoid Row :-D