Professional conceptual artist, Kelton Cram (Deadpool, Jupiter Ascending), has shared with us concept art he created for 20th Century Fox's Independence Day: Resurgence and provided us with an interview.
This batch of artwork includes designs for the Alien Queen—with and without her exosuit, alternate designs for exosuits worn by the other aliens, ESD (Earth Space Defense) hybrid spaceships, uniforms for the pilots, moon canon, and much more.
Aside from the Alien Queen being much larger than her minion, how did you try to differentiate her look from the rest?
Kelton Cram: She would also have an exoskeleton like the minions, but much larger—as in 50 times larger. Like Godzilla scale! We also played with how her exosuit would split and open, and she would be a smaller more fragile creature on the inside. She was to have more tentacles and walk like a quadruped rather than biped. Lastly, she was to have an egg sac that she would carry with her. I think they cut that scene out completely.
In the original 1996 film, the aliens were created with practical effects, but now, they're created with CG. Does that change benefit the concept artists?
Kelton Cram: Great question! I think it depends. Certain concept artists have more rules depending on which department they're working for. If its something that has to be built under production, then its more specific to how it will function as a practical effect. If it's with the animation or VFX department, it will still most likely need to be designed so it can be animated properly. In my case, however, I was working with Roland Emmerich and could be a bit looser with our ideas. Later, our designs would carry into other departments and those artists would have to resolve any issues with functionality.
How did you approach the hybrid spaceships?
Kelton Cram: The idea was that the alien tech left behind would be integrated into the modern human tech. We wanted people to be able to recognize the alien tech from the first movie. So we spliced alien engines and mechanical parts from the first Independence Day into all the human ships.
We always knew they were coming back. After INDEPENDENCE DAY redefined the event movie genre, the next epic chapter delivers global spectacle on an unimaginable scale. Using recovered alien technology, the nations of Earth have collaborated on an immense defense program to protect the planet. But nothing can prepare us for the aliens’ advanced and unprecedented force. Only the ingenuity of a few brave men and women can bring our world back from the brink of extinction.
The cast features Liam Hemsworth, Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman, Maika Monroe, Travis Tope, William Fichtner, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Judd Hirsch, Jessie Usher, Brent Spiner, Vivica A. Fox, and Angelababy.
The film is directed by Roland Emmerich, based on a story by Emmerich, Dean Devlin, Nicolas Wright and James A. Woods. The screenplay was written by Wright, Woods, Devlin and Emmerich.
Independence Day: Resurgence is now playing!