H.R. Giger’s letters to Twentieth Century Fox on the lack of credit for Alien: Resurrection
When Alien: Resurrection was theatrically released, there was no actual credit given to H.R. Giger — neither in the opening credits nor in the end credits. The omission, allegedly “a genuine oversight,” was corrected in home video releases — especially after the following letters, sent by Giger to Twentieth Century Fox.
To: Twentieth Century Fox
From: H.R. Giger
November 13, 1997
The Alien Quartet has, from the very beginning, contained my unique and personal style. For the first film ALIEN, I was awarded an Oscar for “Best Achievement for Visual Effects”. In ALIENS, a film I was not asked to work on, I still received a screen credit for “Original Alien Design”. On ALIEN 3, I was cheated out of the Oscar nomination received by that film because 20th Century Fox gave me the credit, “Original Alien Design” again, instead of “Alien 3 Creature Design”, as it was my rightful title in accordance to my contract and the work I had performed on the film. In 1976 I had completed two paintings, “Necronom IV” and “Necronom V”, in which two long-headed creatures appeared. In 1977 these paintings, were published in my book, NECRONOMICON, by Sphinx Verlag, Basel, in German. It was in this version of the book that Ridley Scott, in his search for a credible Alien creature, came across these two paintings and decided, on them for the full-grown Alien, using the words “That’s it!” The statement has been graciously repeated by Ridley Scott in almost every interview about his work on ALIEN. The creatures in ALIEN:RESURRECTION are even closer to my original Alien designs than the ones which appear in ALIENS and ALIEN 3. The film also resurrects my original designs for the other stages of the creature’s life-cycle, the Eggs, the Facehugger and the Chestburster. ALIEN:RESURRECTION is an excellent film. What would it look like without my Alien life-forms? In all likelihood, all the sequels to ALIEN would not even exist! The designs and my credit have been stolen from me, since I alone have designed the Alien. So why does not Fox give me the credit I rightfully earned? As for those responsible for this conspiracy: All I can wish them is an Alien breeding inside their chests, which might just remind them that the “Alien Father” is H.R.Giger.
To: Twentieth Century Fox
From: H.R. Giger
December 19, 1997
However Twentieth Century Fox is maneuvering its way through the legal issues in order to keep HR Giger far away from proper credit and profit, one thing is certain: the Biomechanical style of HR Giger in any Alien sequel is obvious to everyone. No future Alien copyist or imitator will be able to hide that fact. The Alien Lifeforms, environments, the whole Alien world is created and copyrighted under the law by HR Giger. This is confirmed in the Academy Award of 1980 for “Best Achievement for Visual Effects.” I reserve all rights to my own intellectual property. The copyrights granted to Fox are only for the uses which have been contracted and paid for. In regards to the new Alien development called the Newborn, it is just another Giger design, which you will realize when you look beneath the shell of the adult Alien head, as seen in the photos on page 60 of my book. The human skull under the face has been exposed and the creature’s sinewy body has been contaminated by deformed features. Fox, however, tries to deny HR Giger’s influence. No objection was ever voiced to the title of the book named after its mentor “HR Giger’s Alien”, published by Sphinx in Basel and Big O in London. It would have been wise for Fox to add my name into the main and final credits, immediately, five weeks ago. For every day that passes without this embarassing wrong-doing being fixed the damage grows. Since Fox refused my request for a screen credit, I have received hundreds of e-mail messages from Alien fans, all of them stating what an outrage it is that hundreds of million dollars are made on Giger’s Alien but that his name could not be mentioned among the several hundred other names, even in the credits. Tom Woodruff’s Alien design style is simply “HR Giger’s Biomechanical”. Woodruff, an excellent effect specialist, said about his “Alien Viper’s Nest”: “It is like an HR Giger’s painting come to life.” Yes it is. It has been newly stolen from my book “Necronomicon”. As photographed from above, you will see that it is a section of my painting “Passagen-Tempel / Eingangspartie” (Passage Temple / entrance section) Work # 262. This painting existed three years before the first Alien movie had even started to be filmed. During my participation on the first Alien, Fox was permitted to use my books as a guide and my book “Necronomicon” was Ridley Scott’s bible. There can be no Alien sequel, not even in the future, that is not influenced by H R Giger’s Biomechanical style.