Xenomorph Test Footage For Alien Is Still Creepy After 33 Years

fb share tweet share

Ridley Scott’s 1979 film Alien is a classic. It defined what could be done in the horror and science fiction genre with its boiling tension, heart pulsing score and believable character moments. It also was a step forward in terms of creature design with the infamous xenomorph itself.

This early test footage of 6″10′ Nigerian actor Bolaji Badejo figuring out exactly how to move as a xenomorph is just as creepy and eerie as it was back in 1979. In the test footage, Badejo moves down the spaceship’s corridors without the xenomorph costume but still poses as a threat with the large xenomorph head.

This was the only film role for Bolaji Badejo, who was discovered by a casting agent in a London pub. He collaborated with Alien Art Director, H.R. Giger, with how the xenomorph moved and walked. Badejo took the brunt of the physical abuse as the xenomorph by enduring the heat inside of the latex suit, which only allowed him to be in the suit for only 15 to 20 minutes at a time. It was uncomfortable and the xenomorph head gave Bedejo a limited field of vision. He told Cinefantastique magazine about his experience as the xenomorph in 1979,

[The special-effects helmet] was all manual, remote controlled […] There’s still a space in it for my head. I had it on just to make sure nothing goes wrong with the posture of the head or how tall it is in comparison to the other sequences. They must have had about 2000 tubes of K-Y Jelly […] just to get the effect of that slime coming out of his mouth. A lot of it was spread around on the face. I could barely see what was going on around me, except when I was in a stationary position, while they were filming. Then there were a few holes I could look through.


  1. I think you mean 6′ 10″ not 6″ 10’… Just sayin’

  2. Ted says:

    Stop saying “xenomorph.”

    • Jon says:

      Out of curiosity, what would you prefer? I enjoy the Alien franchise, and that’s the name I always associated with the creatures. Or is your comment an observation of the writer using the word 8 times in 3 short paragraphs?

      • fe says:

        Wrong. Only Cameron called it that in Aliens

        NEVER in Alien. And Ridley NEVER does.

        • Zack says:

          Do you also get mad when people refer to the inhabitants of the first moon of Endor as Ewoks? That was a marketing ploy but was never mentioned in film…

    • Tensen01 says:

      I understand… It’s not like that name was actually used in any of the movies or anythi– Oh wait…

      • OPfan says:

        It was used in Aliens when Hudson ask the Lt. if they were on a bug hunt. Hudson: “What’s a Xenomorph?” Hicks: “It’s a bug hunt.” LOL.

      • d says:

        It was only used in Aliens
        NEVER in Alien and NEVER by Ridley Scott

        • Einherje says:

          I believe Ridley Scott explicitly calls Giger’s creation “the xenomorph” in an interview relating to the, at that time, upcoming Prometheus. I can’t seem to find the interview, but search around.

        • bbmcrae says:

          Sorry, is this somehow an actual issue people should debate?

        • Ran1976 says:

          it’s still the canon name now, ain’t it?

          • Crimson Call says:

            It is. Still alien and xenomorph are similes, even if they like them or not. They never figured out a name and just took a random noun for “stranger”. I prefer the term “xenomorph” anyway because it highlights their bizarre shape more than simply calling them “strangers”, like a racist clichè for anything foreigner.

    • peterjack12 says:

      It’s just the latest gimmick name!

  3. Niclas Boman says:

    That guy moved back to Africa after the Alien movie and he also committed suicide.

  4. JohnJGuy says:

    It was such and is still a phenomenally good movie. One of the few that gets inside and haunts your memory…

  5. Jenny says:

    According to thetallestman.com, he is 7’2″… no reference to death.

  6. Not that anyone cares, but that is background music from Legacy of kain: Soul Reaver. At one point you can even hear Raziel sharpening his claws.

  7. OPfan says:

    Didn’t this guy also wear the suit in “Predator”?

    • No, the predator was played by Kevin Peter Hall who at 7/2″ was four inches taller then Mr. Bedejo.

      • Ran1976 says:

        apparently Van Damme was cast as the Predator at one point. But this was when it looked like a giant bug. Believe it or not, a little bit of that footage is in the movie

  8. xekushuna says:

    That dude was Skinny AF

  9. JCKC says:

    Have to love that 3 minutes of test footage from Alien is still far creepier than Prometheus.

  10. Amazing…and creepy. One of my favorite movies. I thought it was all special effects and not an actual actor. Wow…

  11. Alien is remarkable for being, to my mind, the only movie monster in film history to not disappoint upon its reveal. to actually be creepier than most viewers are able to imagine is the rarest of horror feats, and I doubt many other than Giger could have pulled that off.

    • peterjack12 says:

      The monster is just a man in a rubber suit with a ludicrous head stuck on top, and too many teeth! It only looks creepy because you can hardly see it in the dark!

      • justsayin says:

        in respect, the whole movie was supposed to be sexually rapine on a subliminal level. undertones of violation were implied.

  12. Ken the cog says:

    This creature has haunted me for years and still scares the shit out of me

  13. This was freaking awesome! Man hes super tall and thin!

  14. ekaj says:

    I think its just the music that makes this scary, there nothing scary about this otherwise bu then again i haven’t ever found the original THAT scary but i guess at its time it was probably scary as jaws was cause no one had seen a movie about that like that.

  15. Rod says:

    That guy was like a living, breathing cartoon character.

  16. Bubby says:

    This isn´t creepy. At all. Sad maybe (you can notice the poor guy can´t see a thing with that mask on) But creepy? Come on.

  17. Tresix says:

    ALIEN is one of my all-time favorite movies. I remember seeing this man’s name in the end credits. I kept confusing Bolaji Badejo with Badja Djola, who played the bad guys in PENITENTIARY and A RAGE IN HARLEM. Kevin Peter Hall, who played the Predator, also played Harry in HARRY AND THE HENDERSONS. He died from AIDS in 1991. Djola died of a heart attack in 2005.

  18. peterjack12 says:

    He just looked like a man in a latex suit – just like first horror movie ‘monster’ I saw (‘The She Creature’) back in 1960! So disappointing! Where’s someone with a bit of imagination?

    • Imagination? Few things can match the creativity displayed by this creature seen here. It’s a classic. It’s a biomechanical blend of the erotic and the terrifying. The way he moved certainly wasn’t like any other people in suits. They didn’t have any animatronics back then. Most find it convincing to this very day. It’s all a matter of opinion, but fortunately you’re very much in the minority. At the same time, I don’t believe he could move very well in the suit. They HAD to show him in brief glimpses to maintain a level of mystery and horror, There’s nothing wrong with the design either. How the hell can you compare it to a monster from the 1960s?

  19. alienholic says:

    slenderman…? y u no teach ridley scott how to make prometheus????

  20. Derek Binion says:

    its not really creepy,whats wrong with me?

  21. Chris says:

    This Is Creepy…

  22. Crimson Call says:

    lol at the Soul Reaver music. It fits too nicely than expected.