Behind the Scenes Pic of the Day! A new column to tickle your geek fancy!
Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. A few weeks back I wrote a love letter to Jaws on its 35th anniversary. Some of you might have seen it, but if you didn’t check it out here.
I compiled a ton of behind the scenes images for that article and it reminded me how much I love stuff like that. I know when I was a kid I’d scan Cinefantastique, Fangoria and the other movie-centric magazines for behind the scenes images as soon as I got to the magazine rack. When I grew a little older I’d find back issues of Famous Monsters and Starlog and do the same.
So, that led me to think it’d be really cool to dig up one behind the scenes picture per day and run a little something on it.
I’ve gathered somewhere near 150 behind the scenes photos so far and there’s some awesome stuff I can’t wait to share. Most are studio shots, but there are some candids from crew and actors in there, too.
Let’s start with one that literally stopped my breath when I saw it. There’s something to the composition of the shot that really got me. The photo shows the enormity of the set and makes me wish I could have walked around one of the most instantly recognizable sets of all time.
Hooray Space Jockey and hooray ALIEN! How gorgeous is that set? Unbelievable that it’s all there. I guess in my mind I had imagined it was all done with miniatures, matte paintings and pieces that the actors interacted with. I had no idea the set was that massive and real.
If you have any pic you think should be included email me. I’m looking for iconic and rare, stuff that isn’t the norm.
I have to thank effects maestro Bill Forsche for his crazy collection of BTS images from which I lifted this image.
Coming up I have everything from Hitchcock to Lucas to Roddenberry to Leone. If you guys like this as a daily column let me know in the talkbacks or via email. Same if you hate it, but I think this could be pretty fun.
Tomorrow comes an epic pic trucked in via the Porkchop Express! See ya’ then!
Follow Me On Twitter
Readers Talkbackcomments powered by Disqus
+ Expand All
July 7, 2010, 5:38 p.m. CST
Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka WakkaWakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka Wakka
July 7, 2010, 5:39 p.m. CST
This could be a really cool deal.
July 7, 2010, 5:39 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 5:40 p.m. CST
Nothing else to say really. Great pic!
July 7, 2010, 5:40 p.m. CST
so we've turned into facebook, whats next, song lyric of the day? The pic is amazing, but this might be something thats better for your twitter
July 7, 2010, 5:41 p.m. CST
I loved the Jaws anniversary piece growing up and currently living in Rhode Island as part of a beach family it's always hit home. I'm also crazy about behind the scenes photos from these iconic films. I remember being a kid (I'm 29) and sitting down to those starlog/Fangoria/and old hardcover books about genre films and seeing shots you'd never see otherwise sort of breaking the illusion and making those sets/moments real. Keep it up.
July 7, 2010, 5:43 p.m. CST
I really like this idea. Keep it going!!!
July 7, 2010, 5:44 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 5:45 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 5:47 p.m. CST
The thing about behind the scene shots is that the set always overlit, and everything looks off. That set with the space jockey has beautiful color and lighting in real life. Nice job, Quint.
July 7, 2010, 5:47 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 5:48 p.m. CST
that's pretty nifty
July 7, 2010, 5:49 p.m. CST
one of Lucas' green-screen set shots. Would be great juxtaposition.
July 7, 2010, 5:51 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 5:53 p.m. CST
Aliens is in HD on instant netflix. Not the extended version but it looks pretty awesome.
July 7, 2010, 5:55 p.m. CST
Quite impressive. I'm always surprised how big sets are...and sometimes I'm surprised how small they are too. Real tricks of the camera can make a large space seem claustraphobic and a small space seem vast.
July 7, 2010, 5:56 p.m. CST
i msis AMAD. anyway some movies photos you hopefully have: conan the barbarian, road warrior, sw ot, james bond.
July 7, 2010, 5:57 p.m. CST
Made me think. Spike ran a Star Wars marathon over the weekend, I'm assuming in HD. Anyone catch it in "Spike-a-Vision HD"?
July 7, 2010, 5:57 p.m. CST
Ridley Scott knows his sets well.
July 7, 2010, 5:57 p.m. CST
by Nice Marmot
Just beautiful. Amen to this as a daily column.
July 7, 2010, 5:59 p.m. CST
you can't just post any old shot from any old magazine. Every seen this before > © ?
July 7, 2010, 6 p.m. CST
sweet, with all that location shooting...
July 7, 2010, 6:03 p.m. CST
by Amazing Maurice
These days they just build a bit here and there and then throw up green screen curtains everywhere else.<P>One of my all time favourite sets has to be the Temple of Doom from the 2nd Indy movie. Now thats a set I'd love to walk around in.<P>
July 7, 2010, 6:15 p.m. CST
...they used kids in kid sized space suits to accentuate the scale of that scene.
July 7, 2010, 6:16 p.m. CST
...that the space jockey is sitting in looks like a mouth. Or a giant pair of lips.
July 7, 2010, 6:18 p.m. CST
I love the mystery. Don't ruin it for me!
July 7, 2010, 6:19 p.m. CST
Although I'm amused to see that Killik also fucked up on that one.
July 7, 2010, 6:25 p.m. CST
by Amazing Maurice
It'll be pussy lips.<P>H.R. Giger was obsessed with dicks and pussies.<P>Everything about the alien lifecysle - from the pod, to the facehugger, the newborn and adult alien - are all phallic, vaginal or sexually derivative in design.<P>Giger made a mint from cocks and fannies.
July 7, 2010, 6:26 p.m. CST
I am a sucker for film docs and behind the scenes stuff, more please!
July 7, 2010, 6:39 p.m. CST
if you all go to rte.ie you will be able to see a documentary called ballybrando. It was the last film marlon brando would have made, it co starred johnny depp and debra winger.only things really didnt go to plan and the movie collapsed.....brando shot some scenes. the name of the film was called divine rapture.
July 7, 2010, 6:44 p.m. CST
irish dj, journalist and producer. His show the eleventh hour is the best music program on tv. 2nd only to later with jools. but anyhow Fanning contends that alien is just a space monster movie and nothing more and he called mark kermode an idiot for saying otherwise.
July 7, 2010, 6:47 p.m. CST
by Aphex Twin
Keep this going. I'd love to see what other pics you have.
July 7, 2010, 6:49 p.m. CST
by Mr Lucas
I thought it was just the scene with the leg of the Nostromo that used kids in the Moebius space suits.<P> Alien is a space monster movie, but it's the best space monster movie!
July 7, 2010, 6:51 p.m. CST
that it was little kids in space suits in that scene in order to push the scale of that set piece up an additional notch. Could you imagine being like ten years old and shooting that scene. That would've been fucking cool as all get out.
July 7, 2010, 6:55 p.m. CST
by Teddy Artery
On the other hand, you are violating copyright law by posting these. You need to get permission to post any and all images. I'm just warning Ain't It Cool as a friendly measure. You guys could be seriously sued out of existance. Take care.
July 7, 2010, 6:57 p.m. CST
over virtual any day of the week. And twice on Sunday.
July 7, 2010, 6:58 p.m. CST
Daily spots tend to get old quick.
July 7, 2010, 7:01 p.m. CST
It would be cool if the space jockey was actually a suit with a human inside. We get to see his home planet die and him discover the alien planet thus encountering the aliens, before Ripley's crew arrived. The suit should be an important aspect to the story like Iron Man's. And it will tie into the aliens finale nicely.
July 7, 2010, 7:03 p.m. CST
The sets from the Lemony Snicket film are some of the most gorgeous I've seen...and they're all real, even the panoramic outdoor sets, which are built with old-fashioned backdrops and forced perspective. Awesome. I wish there were more like that.
July 7, 2010, 7:04 p.m. CST
...to light and film that stuff. Back when nearly everything was practical and you knew that what you were capturing was actually going to end up on screen.
July 7, 2010, 7:05 p.m. CST
Fire away Quint.
July 7, 2010, 7:15 p.m. CST
...I was hoping it would be more icebergs from the "Thor" set. <p> ;-)
July 7, 2010, 7:22 p.m. CST
That's such an iconic scene, and an iconic set. Instantly recognizable. It doesn't matter how advanced CG environments get, nothing beats building the real thing. That one pic took my breath away. Three hours of Avatar didn't.
July 7, 2010, 7:26 p.m. CST
Jesus, are there a buncha suits in here or what? Fuck copyright infringement. Keep posting awesome pics, Quint.
July 7, 2010, 7:28 p.m. CST
Fucking pics about 20 years old and any self respecting Alien fan should have seen this
July 7, 2010, 7:29 p.m. CST
Keep it comin
July 7, 2010, 7:33 p.m. CST
Gimme some BLADE RUNNER!
July 7, 2010, 7:38 p.m. CST
by Biggie Kaiju
... shouldn't explain the Space Jockey. A huge part of the cool factor comes from having little or no idea what the fuck that thing is, why he's part of the chair, what that telescope/cannon thing is, why he had the eggs on board, etc. It's a random bit of weird awesomeness that can only be ruined by over-explaining it. In the words of that crying blonde YouTube twink, LEAVE SPACE JOCKEY ALONE!
July 7, 2010, 7:47 p.m. CST
And if you can maybe, just maybe, slip in a handful of behind the scenes images of movies that haven't come out yet...
July 7, 2010, 7:57 p.m. CST
what it'd cost to build that set today<p> Alien was released in 79, I have no idea how long it was in production<p> Anyway it was in excess of 30 years ago
July 7, 2010, 8:18 p.m. CST
But Ridley Scott knows he can't fool the public into buying tickets to any more of his generic period pieces, and so he now returns to needlessly explain the mysteries behind "Alien." <p> Also, with all the bullshit he's been spouting about how he supports 3D, I'm sure that will be thrown in to jack up ticket prices.
July 7, 2010, 8:19 p.m. CST
...instead of that script girl bullshit(and their ilk) and Harry pimping some wannabe teenage movie-maker.<br> I miss the old AICN. This could be an excellent way to get it back. I enjoy this type of stuff, keep it up!
July 7, 2010, 8:20 p.m. CST
are notorious for not caring if you take their material and make money off of it. Post some behind the scenes stuff from Disney!
July 7, 2010, 8:27 p.m. CST
"Harry pimping some wannabe teenage film maker". This site reached a new low when that happened. And her "mother" even came on asking for donations.
July 7, 2010, 8:30 p.m. CST
Modern hollywood should just slide into the pacific ocean...
July 7, 2010, 8:32 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 8:42 p.m. CST
is that it looks so great, it's hard to believe they didn't use it more. Such restraint! This whole awesome set for just a few minutes of screen time. (was it even a full minute?) I know if I had a set like that I would have run it into the ground. Young Ridley Scott was awesome. I don't like the old version as much.
July 7, 2010, 8:45 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 8:49 p.m. CST
kids in kid sized space suits kickin around in that scene to make the set look bigger. The body language of children-if you look close you can see his boy kick at the set with child-like boredom. Brilliant. I just saw the end of requium- "the earth is not ready for this technology". "But this isn't for our earth, is it Ms Yutani?" Great line but I think the earth wouldn't notice a handheld blaster that's about 3 times as powerfull as a sawed off shotgun. Big fuck we got nukes.
July 7, 2010, 8:50 p.m. CST
to move this to twister. I love AICN, I don't like twater. Also, it seems to me that the company definitely knew about the aliens at least up at some high secret level. I think there were clues in both of the first two movies. The cryptic messages in Alien, and didn't Bill Paxton ask if this was just another bug hunt in Aliens?
July 7, 2010, 8:52 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 8:53 p.m. CST
That is to say I agree.
July 7, 2010, 8:59 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 9:20 p.m. CST
Every time I see the "Space Jockey" I get to thinking about this spread from Jack Kirby's "Eternals": http://tinyurl.com/2flq5xn Compare that with Giger's concept art (Scott's own sketch is even closer): http://tinyurl.com/23dpz5q ...I've never seen him directly acknowledged as an influence, but the similarity is pretty striking, eh?
July 7, 2010, 9:23 p.m. CST
re: Giger Bar? Believe it or not, such a place actually exists... Check it out (wiki-link): http://tinyurl.com/2an3wvn
July 7, 2010, 9:33 p.m. CST
Died on the shitter. That's gotta be one of the worst ways to go.
July 7, 2010, 9:54 p.m. CST
Amazing... & Thanks for the link :)
July 7, 2010, 10:11 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 10:14 p.m. CST
Maybe because I only joined the site in, like 2004, so I don't have this idea of AICN as anything but celebrating day-old news and geek culture with a bunch of irredeemable assholes and the occasional scoop thrown in, but fucking, jesus, just leave if you can't stand it.
July 7, 2010, 10:29 p.m. CST
by Hardboiled Wonderland
and no set. That makes me sad.
July 7, 2010, 10:42 p.m. CST
need an embiggable version
July 7, 2010, 10:51 p.m. CST
July 7, 2010, 11:03 p.m. CST
Wow, I always figured that was a model too.
July 7, 2010, 11:07 p.m. CST
No, really. Read the Alien Harvest script for the Alien Prequel. That Space Jockey is a total pervert.
July 7, 2010, 11:22 p.m. CST
Have him on facebook. The dude posts the most amazing shit you'll ever see from BTS frankenstein to King Kong('33 version) to Ghostbusters II the guy has amazing photos. And he does this every day
July 7, 2010, 11:26 p.m. CST
by Star Hump
ruins the magic for me. I don't even like to watch the DVD docs where they show the sets and the actors out of character, etc. It's really hard to look at that pic. Alien looks so authentic, so all-encompassing. What an amazing atmpsphere they crafted. The first time I saw it was I was totally sucked in. I still get that feeling when I watch it. I never want to let go of that.
July 7, 2010, 11:31 p.m. CST
This is what this site is all about to me! Some nerdy goodness for all of us. Good work, I look forward to more of it!
July 8, 2010, 12:12 a.m. CST
I also thought so much of the scene was matte. I hope there is some BladeRunner in your 150. Thanks!
July 8, 2010, 12:20 a.m. CST
keep it up!
July 8, 2010, 12:33 a.m. CST
by Motoko Kusanagi
More of this, please! MORE!!!
July 8, 2010, 1 a.m. CST
Most of these are studio stills released for press to promote the flick. I doubt I'll run into the copyright police, but I'm new to this stuff, too, so who knows? Glad you guys seem to like it so far. Tomorrow... erm... today will shake the pillars of heaven!
July 8, 2010, 1:30 a.m. CST
Any shots of her in her vest-and-panties scene will be very much appreciated
July 8, 2010, 1:47 a.m. CST
The above posts about using kids in miniature spacesuits to magnify the scale of the sets is correct. I didn't know some of them were Ridley Scott's kids. I do remember reading (n Starlog,I think) that Tom Skerrit's son played the mini-Captain Dallas.
July 8, 2010, 1:57 a.m. CST
July 8, 2010, 2:56 a.m. CST
I think this is a great idea. Quint's one of the best things on this site.
July 8, 2010, 3:03 a.m. CST
There is a bar that looks like that. It's in Tokyo.
July 8, 2010, 3:15 a.m. CST
There is a Giger bar in Gruyere, Switzerland. I live in Germany and it's one of my goals to make it to that bar someday. I just wanna sit in one of those crazy looking chairs and drink me a nice pint and get shit faced.
July 8, 2010, 3:39 a.m. CST
look at the size of that thing! I think that the brain is always looking for the fakery in an image and things that are not quite right and the images captured in this sequence are so iconic probably due in part to the 'reality' of it being a full blown set. now it would be all cgi and you would see it and go hmm nice cgi.... maybe this column will give film makers more inspiration to do it for real rather than fix it in post like so many of them love to do
July 8, 2010, 6:06 a.m. CST
by Mr Nicholas
July 8, 2010, 7:15 a.m. CST
by Hardboiled Wonderland
Or will it be Lucas-like green screens? Please, please, go old-school and build gigantic immersive sets for the actors, Ridley.
July 8, 2010, 7:30 a.m. CST
Thanks for the links but the kirby pic didn't wotk for me. what comic is it from?
July 8, 2010, 8:01 a.m. CST
It means overwhelming evil or wickedness. As in the enormity of the Holocaust, not the enormity of the Empire State Building.
July 8, 2010, 11:50 a.m. CST
The Kirby pic is from "The Eternals" #1 (p.2-3), depicting the "legendary chamber of the SPACE GODS"! The tinyurl still works for me: http://tinyurl.com/2flq5xn <br> If that doesn't work, though (just remove the spaces): http://files.fluctu at.net/im ages/e/t/eternals.jpg
July 8, 2010, 2:32 p.m. CST
That tinyurl still won't work for me, possibly because I'm browsing on my phone. But that other link worked and good lord you're right. I may need to read the Eternals now.
July 8, 2010, 3:03 p.m. CST
it gives me a reason to come to this site everyday!
July 8, 2010, 3:55 p.m. CST
oh the days before blue screen....these are great!
July 9, 2010, 8:52 a.m. CST
...as Ridley has already dropped heavy hints that the outer 'exoskeleton' is some kind of SPACESUIT in his prequel!!!<P>Personally, I despise the idea of that, and want the 'Space Jockey' shape a purely 'alien' giant!<P>While it seemed a good thing that Ridley was back onboard the 'ALIEN' franchise, I really hate the fact that he is planning to DEMISTIFY one of the most iconically mysterious moments in the movies...<P>I'd far rather any storyline compared to that.<P>My big fear is that the 'suit' will end up merely being a starmaking vehicle for some up-coming female starlet, who will be from a human-sized 'humanoid' race! I sure hope that's not the case...<P>Anyway, I haven't forgiven Ridley for his dreadful COLOR-meddling for his 'Director's Cut'. Unfortunately, the original (and better) 'theatrical' version was given exactly the same too-dark 'color-timing' on the 'Quadrilogy' boxset too...and this will probably be the default look for the eventual BLURAYS in the future too! Bah, he did the same too-dark tampering with his 'BLADERUNNER:FINAL CUT' release too. I'll stick to the already perfect color of the original DVD releases thanks, which have a far better, more naturalistic look to them.<P>Oh, and KilliK - you missed out STAR WARS amongst your list of fucked-up franchises. And the 'Special Editions' of the originals on that were royally messed-up too, when it came to their 'color-timing' too, strangely enough...
July 9, 2010, 9:01 a.m. CST
...that this article's photo is great. Like someone else said, I sure wish there'd be a couple of other angles on show of that set, such as the one shown above.<P>Such a pity there wasn't some huge 'SET'-MUSEUM somewhere that could have stored some of the more iconic ones for posterity...<P>I'd like to walk around the likes of Morbious's 'FORBIDDEN PLANET' home for instance!
July 14, 2010, 5:10 p.m. CST
In case nobody already noted, this set was built at half scale. Scott said that they constructed suits at half scale and used the crew's children to walk around the set. Probably the only time in history child labor was that cool.
July 15, 2010, 10:11 p.m. CST
I was at one of the first showings of Alien at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood. The Egyptian has a long outdoor courtyard entrance, and they'd set it up so you walked through a number of the movie's sets to get in to the movie. You passed through one of the Nostromo's lower deck corridors, an upper-deck corridor, and the Mother computer room (surprisingly cheap-looking in person). When you emerged from Mother, the Space Jockey was right there on the left. It was made mostly of fiberglass, and was so amazing it caused a bit of a bottleneck. Inside the lobby, the little moonbuggy was on display. I believe in the film it's in the same storage bay with hanging chains where Yaphet Kotto and Veronica Cartwright become monster chow. The Space Jockey was destroyed by an arsonist less than a week later. Rumor was some psycho religious freak torched it because it was "satanic." Not quite as horrendous as the Taliban destroying the giant statues of Buddha, but the same fucked-up mindset.
July 17, 2010, 6:49 p.m. CST
I was so sure they used miniatures!
July 22, 2010, 1:22 p.m. CST
It's so interesting to read about the views of younger fans on here. There is one comment up there that stated that he(she) thought that the Jockey room was done using forced perspective but that the technique was probably to advanced for a movie made in the late 70's. This fan must be thinking that because Lord of the Rings used forced persepctive recently? The forced perspective trick is one of the oldest techniques going back to silent movies! lol. It was remarkable that Lord of the Rings used this retro technique in the digital age.
July 22, 2010, 1:23 p.m. CST
Very cool experience you had! To see all that for real and to note how cheap the sets often seem in real life. Reminds me of seeing the Star Wars costumes on the museum tour and marveling at how cheap some of them looked despite seeming very "real" on film.
July 24, 2010, 7:51 a.m. CST
Scott had kids wear the space suits in the wide shots to make the space jockey set look even bigger.
- Harry shares Day 1 of SXSW which stars Jon Favreau's utterly delicious CHEF!!! -- 127 total posts 127 posts
- Learn What Happens Next On HBO’s GAME OF THRONES!! -- 133 total posts 57 posts
- All 13 Season-Six Episodes Of CLONE WARS Land On Netflix!! Joan Jett On LETTERMAN!! Kenan Thompson On MEYERS!! TRAIN YOUR DRAGON On FX DOWNLOAD!! New HANNIBAL, FIVE-0, GRIMM, BLOODS, LAST MAN, NEIGHBORS, ELISTED, HOPE, BANSHEE, TREEHOUSE, GOLD & SMACKDOWN!! Herc’s Friday TV Talkback!! -- 86 total posts 52 posts
- Darker ZORRO Reboot Finds its Writer! -- 253 total posts 49 posts
- Fox Renews For Next Season THE MINDY PROJECT, THE FOLLOWING, BROOKLYN NINE-NINE And NEW GIRL!! -- 52 total posts 35 posts
- Quint eats up Jon Favreau's CHEF, opening night flick of SXSW 2014! -- 27 total posts 27 posts
- HERCULES ON THE RADIO!! Ain’t It Cool’s TV Critic Chats Up BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER / ED WOOD Icon (And Hollywood Royalty) Juliet Landau!! Listen And Call In LIVE Saturday 10pm PT / Sunday 1am ET!! -- 25 total posts 25 posts
- Lena Dunham Hosts SNL!! Sagan COSMOS Marathon On NGC!! New UNIVERSE, OUTRAGEOUS ACTS OF SCIENCE & BLACK SAILS!! SWAMP PAWN, RAISING WHITLEY, SCORNED, COPS & CRAZY HEARTS Finales!! Hallmark’s A RING BY SPRING!! Lifetime’s A TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL!! Herc’s Saturday TV Talkback!! -- 24 total posts 24 posts
- Karen Gillan has Night Terrors in this First OCULUS Clip! -- 20 total posts 20 posts
- New Trailer for Jim Jarmusch's ONLY LOVERS LEFT ALIVE! -- 19 total posts 19 posts