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Sigourney Weaver explains why she went bald in Alien 3

In David Fincher's Alien 3, Sigourney Weaver reprised her iconic role as Ellen Ripley in the science fiction movie franchise, with a very different look.

Alien 3

By Alien 3, Sigourney Weaver’s character, Ellen Ripley, had already gone through the wringer quite a few times — but in the third instalment of the science fiction movie series, things were set to get even worse for her character.


Not only is she the only survivor of a crash landing along with some dangerous alien creatures, but she also makes the disturbing discovery that she has, in fact, been impregnated by the parasitic Xenomorph Queen. Some people really can’t catch a break, huh?

In an appearance on the Smartless podcast, which is hosted by Will Arnett, Jason Bateman, and Sean Hayes, Weaver discussed some of the creative choices made regarding her character in the divisive ‘90s movie — like the fact that she was bald.

“We finished a meeting with the suits at Fox and all got up and someone, probably the Head of Fox, said ‘So David, how do you see Ripley?’ And we were on our way out the door and he said to me ‘how do you feel about bald?’ And I said ‘Sounds great to me,'” she recalled.

This isn’t the first time Weaver has talked about the puzzling decision for her character to be bald: she also discussed it in an interview with Empire Magazine back in the ’90s, straight from the set of the monster movie while it was being filmed.

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Recounting that very same conservation with the head of Fox, Weaver said of Ripley being bald, “I immediately liked the idea. I guess I was relieved that he had any image of her at all. That told me more about how he saw this film than anything else. He saw Ripley as very vulnerable – her against everything and everyone. And I liked that. All I said was, ‘Well, if I shave my head, then my price goes up.’ Everyone laughed nervously. I didn’t get another dime!”

Although Alien 3 ultimately wasn’t as well received as its predecessors, it has, over the years, become somewhat of a cult classic among alien movie fans. If you want to get your teeth into some other cult classics (which may or may not involve impregnated alien foetuses), check out our guide to some of the best horror movies of all time.