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Adam Savage Meets Alien: Covenant’s Xenomorph Animatronic

There is just no stopping Adam Savage and his team over at Tested when it comes to Alien: Covenant! To help promote today’s American Blu-ray and DVD release of Alien: Covenant, Tested has released a new featurette focused around the practical Alien used during the filming of Alien: Covenant.

“On the set of Alien: Covenant, Adam gets up close with the animatronic Xenomorph head that’s worn by the film’s creature puppeteer. Seeing this head animate and lunge, we learn how the animatronic operators work with the performer to breathe life into this 9-foot tall creature.”

This latest behind-the-scene featurette shows us some pretty cool footage of Andrew Crawford in the Alien puppeteering rig constructed by the good folk from Creature Inc Ltd and Odd Studio.

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Comments: 23
  1. Highland
    You can't achieve the same kind of shots with practical, as you have to hide the fact it's just a man in a suit.  May have worked back in the 80s but in 2017 it's cheesy.  Particularly for a big budget movie.  Like the shot with the Neomorph slowly approaching David - would not have worked with just a guy in a suit.  Besides, if you listen to the commentary, Ridley Scott says they kept the practical shots that worked better than the CG shots.

    I agree with your point about it not working with the same kind of shots, but I disagree with the point that it would be cheesy. Alien, Aliens and Alien 3 have shots that are more powerful than the current CGI beastie. Shots that not only look better , but are still scary to this day.

    I dunno, that one shot of the Alien entering the loading bay was up with best I reckon.

    It was a good shot because it was dark,  far away and naturally moving ( not doing gymnastics). It was also creepy.

    The problem with CGI these days I feel is that a lot of the time it's used to show off - " wow look at this". It's lit wrong, there's no darkness, it's blurry or quick, the shadows are all off or it feels like it's not heavy or got any weight. They want you to see it in all it's glory.

    The CGI shots don't bother me in Covenant, but I like puppets better if I had to choose for close ups.
  2. Deaconschristpose
    There's an artificial gloss on CGI that takes you out of the scene immediately.  The fast shots, you need it, but the close-ups? Inexcuasble. It's something Prometheus got right that Covenant got wrong. That being said, the movie is still great imo.
  3. Elmazalman
    The shot of the Alien (closing it's jaws) after killing the guy in the shower and it entering the terraforming bay are exceptional. They're the only shots of the creature which I think are as good as anything seen in the original film.
  4. Jonesy1974
    You can't achieve the same kind of shots with practical, as you have to hide the fact it's just a man in a suit.  May have worked back in the 80s but in 2017 it's cheesy.  Particularly for a big budget movie.  Like the shot with the Neomorph slowly approaching David - would not have worked with just a guy in a suit.  Besides, if you listen to the commentary, Ridley Scott says they kept the practical shots that worked better than the CG shots.

    I agree with your point about it not working with the same kind of shots, but I disagree with the point that it would be cheesy. Alien, Aliens and Alien 3 have shots that are more powerful than the current CGI beastie. Shots that not only look better , but are still scary to this day.

    I dunno, that one shot of the Alien entering the loading bay was up with best I reckon.
  5. Highland
    You can't achieve the same kind of shots with practical, as you have to hide the fact it's just a man in a suit.  May have worked back in the 80s but in 2017 it's cheesy.  Particularly for a big budget movie.  Like the shot with the Neomorph slowly approaching David - would not have worked with just a guy in a suit.  Besides, if you listen to the commentary, Ridley Scott says they kept the practical shots that worked better than the CG shots.

    I agree with your point about it not working with the same kind of shots, but I disagree with the point that it would be cheesy. Alien, Aliens and Alien 3 have shots that are more powerful than the current CGI beastie. Shots that not only look better , but are still scary to this day.

  6. Scorpio
    You can't achieve the same kind of shots with practical, as you have to hide the fact it's just a man in a suit.  May have worked back in the 80s but in 2017 it's cheesy.  Particularly for a big budget movie.  Like the shot with the Neomorph slowly approaching David - would not have worked with just a guy in a suit.  Besides, if you listen to the commentary, Ridley Scott says they kept the practical shots that worked better than the CG shots.
  7. Johnny Handsome
    I had no problem with the CGI in the movie, it was good, but seeing all those great animatronics and suits really makes my heart bleed they didnt include them, i can't recall a single practical Alien in the movie, and that's a shame.

    And to be honest, i think the "we made the suits just for reference" statement from Ridley is pure bullshit, you don't spend a huge chunk of money for those really good and complex suits and animatronics with the intention to erase it all over with CGI, i think Ridley pulled a "thing" here, where they wanted to go practical and decided during post production to make everything CG instead.

    Unlike most people on here i actually like CGI in movies, i really do, but it would have been ten times more creepy if there was a guy slowly walking around on the dust filled spaceship instead of the hyperactive AvP-version we got instead.

    The design is awesome, this is the closest to the original big-chap design by far.
  8. Xenomorphine
    This was the pupeteering rig Conor O'Sullivan mentioned in our exclusive video they didn't have the time to finish. This was clearly the test footage. You can tell because it has the thinner limbs. :)
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