Alien: How did they support the massive head for the actor wearing the costume?

Egon Spengler

Master Member
I'm always impressed by the size of the head on the Alien costume, and I'm building a similar head for a costume construction of my own. My problem is keeping the weight off of my neck while wearing the head, but still being able to look up and down and turn my head left and right.

I've been searching for behind the scenes images trying to get an idea of how to build my own design but they seem hard to come by.


New Member
Hi! I've found this video that might be of help:
Alien Animatronic Mask - YouTube

Also, I don't think weight was paid particular attention to because the actors had to wear it for a limited amount of time, and close ups were often made with animatronic puppets.
My suggestion is to use the lightest materials possible, sacrificing durability for lightness.


New Member
The thing with trying to replicate a good costume from a movie with sfx is they used a combination of props and costume short-cuts to get it all working in frame.
It ends up working out to be if you can be as or more creative than the original costumer if you want to hold onto something more realistic on close inspection.


Sr Member
It was probably counter-balanced as well.


Darth Pinhead

Active Member
I believe (?) the original was foam latex on a fiberglass shell. Tom Woodruf Jr. has been playing the part of the Alien (Wearing the full suit) since Aliens, when he worked with SWS. He now, of course, owns ADI. Behind the scenes DVDs may be your best bet to see how he wears the head.

Here are a couple of sites with various behind the scenes pics. The first are shots taken by people on the crew. The second is a collection put together by Sabres21768 on The Hunter's Lair:


AlienReference pictures by sabres21768 - Photobucket

The video posted above is Pete Mander's work for a fan film he made...
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