Michelle Pfeiffer Inspired Look of 'Alien 3' Xenomorph

The xenomorph from the Alien franchise is one of the most exquisitely designed creatures in all of sci-fi cinema, thanks in large part to the conceptual designs by H.R. Giger. While some might credit the success of the creature to its clear lack of humanity, Monster Legacy detailed the development process and director David Fincher's desires for the new monster for Alien 3 to resemble Michelle Pfeiffer.

One of the issues that the production of Alien 3 underwent was that both Giger and the team of Tom Woodruff Jr. and Alec Gillis of Amalgamated Dynamics were designing the creature for the film on their own, seemingly getting conflicting instructions from various members of the crew.

Monster Legacy describes:

"Fincher specifically wanted the alien to have lips based on Michelle Pfeiffer’s — more voluptuous and feminine. The director recalled: 'We did give it Michelle Pfeiffer’s lips. That’s what they’re based on. It always had these little thin lips, and I said to Giger, ‘let’s make it a woman when it comes right up to Ripley.’ So it has these big, luscious collagen lips.'”

Throughout his career, Giger had made a name for himself by creating grotesquely erotic images, which Alien 3 potentially would have continued.

“The lips and chin on my new model are better proportioned and give the creature a more erotic appearance,” Giger shared. “When the mouth is closed it looks very voluptuous, beautiful.”

alien 3 xenomorph h r giger design
(Photo: Monster Legacy)

The final version of the creature in the film did have more pronounced lips than seen in earlier films, but not to the degree of Giger's designs.

“David Fincher neglected to inform me that Woodruff and Gillis were also contracted to take care of the redesign of the alien,” Giger admitted. “I found out much later. I thought I had the job and that Woodruff and Gillis would work from my plans. On their side, they were convinced that it was their job and accepted my ‘suggestions’ with pleasure. They believed that all my effort was based on a huge love for the matter because I worked hard even after my contract was over. Today, I am convinced that it was a game by Fincher to keep both sides happy and obtain the maximum for his movie.”

The xenomorph was last seen in this year's Alien: Covenant, but based on a variety of comments from filmmaker Ridley Scott, future films will feature the creature in a reduced capacity.

[H/T Monster Legacy]