After the release of Alien, many magazine articles began to spring with talk about scenes cut from Alien including a cocoon scene which became Alien's most infamous deleted scene. Talk of the original 11 minutes cut from Alien left fans thirsty for more and wondered if an 'Uncut' version of Alien would ever see the light of day. Rumours began to appear that Fox did intend to release alien, in an uncut form (uncut versions of films were rare back in those days due to the video nasty bans and heavy censoring) but as time passed this release of Alien became merely rumour and speculation.
In 1979 two articles (Famous Monsters of Filmland issues 158 and 159) went into detail about most of the Deleted footage from the movie and even talked about a possible 'X-rated' version of Alien, which got a lot of fans excited.
"...The good word is that ALIEN might be re-released later on with the X-rated footage included for the strong of stomach & spine who have survived the R-rated version and want to go all the way with ALIEN!"
- Famous Monsters of Filmland #159
Most of these articles went into detail about the toned gore and other deletions which prompted many other magazines to bombard Ridley Scott, H.R. Giger, Dan O' Bannon, Ronald Shusett and the films cast questions about Alien's deleted scenes. Years after these featured articles this eagerly awaited 'X-rated' cut of Alien never surfaced but the desire for this version never died'
"The fronts & backs of scenes were cut off, all you ended up with was the middles. But i guess you have to accept the fact that it is a piece of science fiction and it's the Alien that is the star"
- Veronica Cartwright [Lambert]
Years later a Collectors edition of Alien was released on Laserdisc, which contained some of Alien's deleted scenes and some Outtakes within its special features. However, this was not the 'X-rated' released as mentioned for hoped for but still gave fans a chance to see some of the Deleted scenes from Alien. What really got the fans going was that James Cameron had just released Aliens on Laserdisc (and soon VHS) with 17 minutes of extra footage causing fans to go wild. With this release, most fans wondered why Alien didn't get the same treatment and once again rumours of an 'Alien - Special Edtion' was soon to be released on VHS. Once again, this got some fans hopes up.
Do you remember Laserdisc?
This so-called Alien: Special Edition merely turned out to be a widescreen version of Alien, which was part of FOX's widescreen collection series. Another false hope was talk of an Alien Special Editon release on the limited-edition FaceHugger box set, but again never happened, instead Aliens: Special Edition was released with the box set. Though the Alien: Special Edition didn't appear with this set what you did get was a deleted scene's segment after the film plus an Interview with Ridley Scott by Don Shay. This was the first time people who didn't have laserdiscs could see these deleted scenes on VHS, although not all of them were featured on this tape.
Fans contacted the Aliens UK Fan Club in the hopes that they could find out what was happening with this 'Phantom' release of Alien so the Club contacted Fox to find out and did some research of their own. After the Aliens UK Fan Club contacted FOX, Leslie Skingle published an article called 'Alien: Special Edition - What could we expect? in their September 1992 Issue of their Facehugger newsletter/fanzine.
"The Brett sequence as a whole might be intermixed with sweeping overhead shots of the Alien's cranium, full of what appear to be worms..."
- Leslie Skingle, Aliens UK Fan Club Editor.
After the article was published FOX gave the UK Fan club an answer about the so-called Alien: Special Edition in which they simply replied they had no interest or intention of releasing an 'Extended Cut' of Alien. This reply wasn't what fans were expecting, and that was the last time FOX talked about the subject.
Issue 28 of Starlog November 1979, another confirmation that Fox had no intentions to release any new cut of Alien. With this response from FOX, a fan created unofficial Bootleg VHS began to appear at sci-fi conventions and other places. This bootleg was merely the Deleted scenes from the LaserDisc/Facehugger VHS edited back into the film [I wish I still had mine, damn you Paul you little thief!] but this didn't satisfy fans, and the bootleg became obscure. In 2003 Alien: The Directors Cut hit the cinemas, but this Cut of the film was not the 'Phantom X-rated Cut' that was talked about for years, and so it seems this version of Alien will never see the light of day. The only time you would have seen an X-rated version would have been the studio test screenings.
The arrival of the Alien Quadrilogy Boxset introduced fans to extra deleted scenes and outtake footage never seen before, most of it talked about by the cast and crew in past articles. However, not every deleted scene/outtake talked about was featured in the Quadrlogy Boxset and even though the Theatrical Cut of Alien is perfect [In my opinion] I would still one day like to see the infamous X-rated version...who knows maybe one day we will...OK. I'll keep dreaming.
Above article scan was e-mailed to me by Jerome, Thank you.