The Lists: In Contention's Top 10 Performances in Ridley Scott's Sci-Fi Trio
With 'Prometheus' on the way, we look at the director's work with actors in the genre
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7. John Hurt, "Alien"
John Hurt would likely make his way to this list for his contribution to one of the greatest bits of directorial subterfuge in cinematic history. Legend has it that the cast of “Alien” were kept in the dark about the details of the infamous chestburster scene right up until the moment they witnessed the monster be, quite literally, unleashed. The truth is that they of course know that the event was going to take place but were not apprised of the how. Scott had five cameras going in order to capture the moment as organically as possible and there can be no doubt that Hurt’s performance heightened the stakes for his scene mates and solidified the sense of realism for the audience. But it is the initial sense of awe that the actor captured when the crew boarded the alien ship and came in contact with the space jokey that guarantees his addition to this list.