Dark Horse Is Turning William Gibson’s Alien 3 Script Into A New Comic 

Dark Horse Is Turning William Gibson’s Alien 3 Script Into A New Comic 

When Fox approached William Gibson to write a script for Alien 3 back in the late ‘80s, the studio imagined that the lauded author would bring his distinct cyberpunk vision of the future to the franchise. Instead, Gibson turned in a complicated, politically-charged script influenced by the Cold War.

Due to a number of factors, Fox ultimately ended up passing on Gibson’s script after deciding it wasn’t going to take the franchise in the direction the studio wanted, and the Gibson Alien movie became the stuff of fandom legend. Now, though, Dark Horse Comics is planning to realise Gibson’s vision as an all-new comic book series adapted from Gibson’s script and illustrated by Johnnie Christmas.

In an interview with CBR, Gibson spoke about what a strange experience it was to eventually see that the version of Alien 3 that made it to theatres bore virtually no resemblance to the script he’d turned in. Seeing his story adapted, he explained, is something he never imagined happening:

“When your first contracted screenplay (or screenplay of any kind, in my case) isn’t produced, but the film is eventually made with a different screenplay, retaining nothing of yours but a barcode tattoo on the back of a character’s neck, the last thing you ever expect is to see yours beautifully adapted and realised, decades later, in a different medium, by an artist of Johnnie Christmas’ calibre.

It’s a wonderful experience, and I have no doubt that Johnnie’s version, which adheres almost entirely to the script, delivers more of my material to the audience than any feature film would have been likely to do.”

Admittedly, Gibson’s script was a marked shift in direction for the Alien franchise.

In his script, the hibernating crew of the Sulaco are intercepted by the Union of Progressive Peoples, an independent nation, and taken to a larger space station where the inevitable outbreak of Xenomorphs subsequently occurs. The story explored the ideas of dueling governments both fighting for control of a powerful biological weapon and many of the moral and sociological implications that fight would have.

It’ll be interesting to finally see Gibson’s Alien story laid out with visual accompaniment when the series drops on November 7—and who knows, maybe the book might have an impact on the franchise as it exists now.


  • I read the script a while ago and kept thinking “why didn’t they make this?”. It’s so much better than what the final film ended up being.

    I’m really pumped to see it finally realised in some form.

    • I always look at the Alien franchise and see the corporations as the true power behind most events and that governments are almost secondary and subservient to the whims of the corporations. So I could see how playing govt -v- govt wouldn’t mesh with their plans for the franchise.

      I also can’t help but think they took some of the ideas and tweaked them for use in Alien Resurrection. There are some similarities (at least on the face of it).

    • I read the script a while ago too – and when I mean a while ago it was via the Lynx text browser on a VT100 terminal. Ahh the internet in the early nineties…..
      Now get off my lawn you damn kids.

Show more comments

Comments are closed.

Log in to comment on this story!