The time is the future. The crew aboard a massive commercial space vehicle is enroute to earth with a load of extraterrestrial ore when they are sidetracked by mysterious signals from a nearby planet. The signals seem to be calls for help and when the space ship arrives they find a ruined, moldering spacecraft and within it egg-like living organisms.

  • 1 hr 57 minRHDSD
  • May 25, 1979
  • Science Fiction

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Cast & Crew

  • Harry Dean StantonActor

    Stanton was born in West Irvine, Kentucky, to Ersel (Moberly), a cook, and Sheridan Harry Stanton, a barber and tobacco farmer. Lived in Lexington, Kentucky and graduated from Lafayette Senior High School with the class of 1944. Drafted into the Navy, he served as a cook in the U.S. Navy during World War II, and was on board an LST during the Battle of Okinawa. He then returned to the University of Kentucky to appear in a production of "Pygmalion", before heading out to California and honing his craft at the prestigious Pasadena Playhouse. Stanton then toured around the United States with a male choir, worked in children's theater, and then headed back to California. His first role on screen was in the tepid movie Tomahawk Trail (1957), but he was quickly noticed and appeared regularly in minor roles as cowboys and soldiers through the late 1950s and early 1960s. His star continued to rise and he received better roles in which he could showcase his laid-back style, such as in Cool Hand Luke (1967), Kelly's Heroes (1970), Dillinger (1973), The Godfather: Part II (1974), and in Alien (1979). It was around this time that Stanton came to the attention of director Wim Wenders, who cast him in his finest role yet as Travis in the moving Paris, Texas (1984). Next indie director Alex Cox gave Stanton a role that brought him to the forefront, in the quirky cult film Repo Man (1984). Stanton was now heavily in demand, and his unique look got him cast as everything from a suburban father in the mainstream Pretty in Pink (1986) to a soft-hearted, but ill-fated, private investigator in Wild at Heart (1990) and a crazy yet cunning scientist in Escape from New York (1981). Apart from his film performances, he was also an accomplished musician, and "The Harry Dean Stanton Band" and their unique spin on mariachi music played together for well over a decade. They toured internationally. He became a cult figure of cinema and music and when Debbie Harry sang the lyric, "I want to dance with Harry Dean..." in her 1990s hit "I Want That Man", she was talking about him. Stanton remained consistently active on screen, most recently appearing in films including Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), The Green Mile (1999) and The Man Who Cried (2000).
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  • Ian HolmActor

  • Sigourney WeaverActor

    Sigourney Weaver was born Susan Alexandra Weaver in Leroy Hospital in Manhattan, New York City. Her father, TV producer Sylvester L. Weaver Jr., originally wanted to name her Flavia, because of his passion for Roman history (he had already named her elder brother Trajan). Her mother, Elizabeth Inglis (née Desiree Mary Lucy Hawkins), was an English actress who had sacrificed her career for a family. Sigourney grew up in a virtual bubble of guiltless bliss, being taken care of by nannies and maids. By 1959, the Weavers had resided in 30 different households. In 1961, Sigourney began attending the Brearley Girls Academy, but her mother moved her to another New York private school, Chapin. Sigourney was quite rather taller than most of her other classmates (at age 13, she was already 5' 10"), resulting in her constantly being laughed at and picked on; in order to gain their acceptance, she took on the role of class clown. In 1962, her family moved to San Francisco briefly, an unpleasant experience for her. Later, they moved back east to Connecticut, where she became a student at the Ethel Walker School, facing the same problems as before. In 1963, she changed her name to "Sigourney", after the character Sigourney Howard in F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby" (her own birth name, Susan, was in honor of her mother's best friend, explorer Susan Pretzlik). Sigourney had already starred in a school drama production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream", and, in 1965, she worked during the summer with a stock troupe, performing in "A Streetcar Named Desire" and "You Can't Take It With You" (she did not star in the latter because she was taller than the lead actor). After graduating from school in 1967, she spent some months in a kibbutz in Israel. At that time, she became engaged to reporter Aaron Latham, but they soon separated. In 1969, Sigourney enrolled in Stanford University, majoring in English Literature. She also participated in school plays, especially Japanese Noh plays. By that time, she was living in a tree house, alongside a male friend, dressed in elf-like clothes! After completing her studies in 1971, she applied for the Yale School of Drama in New Haven. Despite appearing at the audition reading a Bertolt Brecht speech and wearing a rope-like belt, she was accepted by the school but her professors rejected her, because of her height, and kept typecasting her as prostitutes and old women (whereas classmate Meryl Streep was treated almost reverently). However, in 1973, while making her theatrical debut with "Watergate Classics", she met up with a team of playwrights and actors and began hanging around with them, resulting in long-term friendships with Christopher Durang, Kate McGregor-Stewart and Albert Innaurato. In 1974, she starred in such plays as Aristophanes' "Frogs" and Durang's "The Nature and Purpose of the Universe" and "Daryl and Carol and Kenny and Jenny", as "Jenny". After finishing her studies that year, she began seriously pursuing a stage career, but her height kept being a hindrance. However, she continued working on stage with Durang (in "Titanic" [1975]) and Innaurato (in "Gemini" [1976]). Other 1970s stage works included "Marco Polo Sing a Song", "The Animal Kingdom", "A Flea in Her Ear", "The Constant Husband", "Conjuring an Event" and others. However, the one that really got her noticed was "Das Lusitania Songspiel", a play she co-wrote with Durang and in which she starred for two seasons, from 1979 to 1981. She was also up for a Drama Desk Award for it. During the mid-1970s, she appeared in several TV spots and even starred as Avis Ryan on the soap opera Somerset (1970). In 1977, she was cast in the role Shelley Duvall finally played in Annie Hall (1977), after rejecting the role due to prior stage commitments. In the end, however, Woody Allen offered her a role in the film that, while short (she was on-screen for six seconds), made many people sit up and take notice. She later appeared in Madman (1978) and, of course, Alien (1979). The role of the tough, uncompromising Ripley made Sigourney an overnight star and brought her a British Award nomination. She next appeared in Eyewitness (1981) and The Year of Living Dangerously (1982), the latter being a great success in Australia that won an Oscar and brought Sigourney and co-star Mel Gibson to Cannes in 1983. The same year she delivered an honorary Emmy Award to her father, a few months before her uncle, actor Doodles Weaver, committed suicide. That year also brought her a romance with Jim Simpson, her first since having broken up two years previously with James M. McClure. She and Simpson were married on 1 October 1984. Meanwhile, Sigourney had played in the poorly received Deal of the Century (1983) and the mega-hit Ghostbusters (1984). She was also nominated for a Tony Award for her tour-de-force performance in the play "Hurly Burly". Then followed One Woman or Two (1985), Half Moon Street (1986) and Aliens (1986). The latter was a huge success, and Sigourney was nominated for both a Golden Globe Award and an Oscar. She then entered her most productive career period and snatched Academy Award nominations, in both Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress categories, for her intense portrayal of Dian Fossey in Gorillas in the Mist (1988) and her delicious performance as a double-crossing, power-hungry corporate executive in Working Girl (1988). She ended up losing in both, but made up for it to a degree by winning both Golden Globe Awards. After appearing in a documentary about fashion photographer Helmut Newton, Helmut Newton: Frames from the Edge (1989), and reprising her role in the sequel Ghostbusters II (1989), she discovered she was pregnant and retired from public life for a while. She gave birth to her daughter, Charlotte Simpson, on 13 April 1990, and returned to the movies as a now skinhead Ripley in Alien 3 (1992) and a gorgeous Queen Isabella of Spain in 1492: Conquest of Paradise (1992), her second film with director Ridley Scott. She starred in the political comedy Dave (1993) alongside Kevin Kline, and then a Roman Polanski thriller, Death and the Maiden (1994). In 1995, she was seen in the romantic comedy Jeffrey (1995) and the mystery thriller Copycat (1995). The next year, she "trod the boards" in "Sex and Longing", yet another Durang play. She had not performed in the theater in many years before that play, her last stage performances occurring in the 1980s in "As You Like It" (1981), "Beyond Therapy" (1981), "The Marriage of 'Bette and Boo'" (1985) and "The Merchant of Venice" (1986). In 1997, she was the protagonist in Snow White: A Tale of Terror (1997), The Ice Storm (1997) and Alien: Resurrection (1997). Her performance in The Ice Storm (1997) gained her a BAFTA Award and another Golden Globe Award nomination. She also gave excellent performances in A Map of the World (1999) and the sci-fi spoof Galaxy Quest (1999). However, her next comedy Company Man (2000) was not quite so warmly welcomed critically and financially. She next played a sexy con artist in Heartbreakers (2001) and had a voice role in Big Bad Love (2001). Her father died at age 93. Sigourney herself has recently starred in Tadpole (2002) and is planning a cinematic version of The Guys (2002), the enthralling September 11th one-act drama she played on stage on late 2001. At age 60, she played a crucial role in Avatar (2009), which became the top box-office hit of all time. The film reunited her with her Aliens (1986) director James Cameron. Her beauty, talent, and hard-work keeps the ageless actress going, and she has continued to win respect from her fans and directors.
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  • Veronica CartwrightActor

  • Tom SkerrittActor

  • John HurtActor

    One of stage, screen and TV's finest transatlantic talents, slight, gravel-voiced, pasty-looking John Vincent Hurt was born on January 22, 1940, in Shirebrook, a coal mining village, in Derbyshire, England. The youngest child of Phyllis (Massey), an engineer and one-time actress, and Reverend Arnould Herbert Hurt, an Anglican clergyman and mathematician, his quiet shyness betrayed an early passion for acting. First enrolled at the Grimsby Art School and St. Martin's School of Art, his focus invariably turned from painting to acting. Accepted into the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in 1960, John made his stage debut in "Infanticide in the House of Fred Ginger" followed by "The Dwarfs." Elsewhere, he continued to build upon his 60's theatrical career with theatre roles in "Chips with Everything" at the Vaudeville; the title role in "Hamp" at the Edinburgh Festival; "Inadmissible Evidence" at Wyndham's; and "Little Malcolm and His Struggle Against the Eunuchs" at the Garrick. His movie debut occurred that same year with a supporting role in the "angry young man" British drama Young and Willing (1962), followed by small roles in Appuntamento in Riviera (1962), A Man for All Seasons (1966) and The Sailor from Gibraltar (1967). A somber, freckled, ravaged-looking gent, Hurt found his more compelling early work in offbeat theatrical characterizations with notable roles as Malcolm in "Macbeth" (1967), Octavius in "Man and Superman" (1969)," Peter in "Ride a Cock Horse (1972), Mike in '"The Caretaker" (1972), and Ben in "The Dumb Waiter" (1973). At the same time he gained more prominence in a spray of film and support roles such as a junior officer in Before Winter Comes (1968); the title highwayman in Sinful Davey (1969); a morose little brother in In Search of Gregory (1969); a dim, murderous truck driver in 10 Rillington Place (1971); a skirt-chasing, penguin-studying biologist in Cry of the Penguins (1971); the unappetizing son of a baron in The Pied Piper (1972); and a repeat of his title stage role as Little Malcolm and His Struggle Against the Eunuchs (1974). Hurt shot to international stardom, however, on TV where he was allowed to display his true, fearless range. He reaped widespread acclaim for his embodiment of the tormented gay writer and raconteur Quentin Crisp in the landmark television play The Naked Civil Servant (1975), adapted from Crisp's autobiography. Hurt's bold, unabashed approach on the flamboyant and controversial gent who dared to be different was rewarded with the BAFTA (British TV Award). This triumph led to the equally fascinating success as the cruel and crazed Roman emperor Caligula in the epic television masterpiece I, Claudius (1976), followed by another compelling interpretation as murderous student Raskolnikov in Crime and Punishment (1979). A resurgence occurred on film as a result. Among other unsurpassed portraits on his unique pallet, the chameleon in him displayed a polar side as the gentle, pathetically disfigured title role in The Elephant Man (1980), and as a tortured Turkish prison inmate who befriends Brad Davis in the intense drama Midnight Express (1978) earning Oscar nominations for both. Mainstream box-office films were offered as well as art films. He made the most of his role as a crew member whose body becomes host to an unearthly predator in Alien (1979). With this new rush of fame came a few misguided ventures as well that were generally unworthy of his talent. Such brilliant work as his steeple chase jockey in Champions (1984) or kidnapper in The Hit (1984) was occasionally offset by such drivel as the comedy misfire Partners (1982) with Ryan O'Neal in which Hurt looked enervated and embarrassed. For the most part, the craggy-faced actor continued to draw extraordinary notices. Tops on the list includes his prurient governmental gadfly who triggers the Christine Keeler political sex scandal in the aptly-titled Scandal (1989); the cultivated gay writer aroused and obsessed with struggling "pretty-boy" actor Jason Priestley in Love and Death on Long Island (1997); and the Catholic priest embroiled in the Rwanda atrocities in Beyond the Gates (2005). Latter parts included the recurring role of the benign wand-maker Mr. Ollivander in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001) and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010), and the voice of The Dragon in Merlin (2008). Among Hurt's final film appearances were as a terminally ill screenwriter in That Good Night (2017) and a lesser role in the mystery thriller Damascus Cover (2017). Hurt's voice was also tapped into animated features and documentaries, often serving as narrator. He also returned to the theatre performing in such shows as "The Seagull," "A Month in the Country" (1994), "Afterplay" (2002) and "Krapp's Last Tape," the latter for which he received the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award." A recovered alcoholic who married four times, Hurt was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) by the Queen in 2004, and Knight Bachelor of the Order of the British Empire in 2015. That same year (2015) he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. In July of 2016, he was forced to bow out of the father role of Billy Rice in a then-upcoming London stage production of "The Entertainer" opposite Kenneth Branagh due to ill health that he described as an "intestinal ailment." Hurt died several months later at his home in Cromer, Norfolk, England on January 15, 2017, three days after his 77th birthday.
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  • Yaphet KottoActor

  • Ridley ScottDirector

  • Walter HillProducer

  • Gordon CarrollProducer