Heisserer blasts the science of The Thing

Thing Prequel screenwriter Eric Heisserer has recently popped up on the forums over at thethingfan.fr.yuku.com to challenge inconsistencies in the continuity between the 2011 Prequel and Carpenter’s 1982 classic.

The Alien Spaceship in Carpenter's The Thing

One of the issues that’s consistently highlighted by some fans about the Prequel is that is eschews the thermite blasting techniques that are used by the Norwegians to reveal the alien spaceship that are documented in video footage in Carpenter’s version.

There are other inconsistencies too but this one is commonly cited in criticism of the way the Prequel diverges from perceived canon.

Heisserer has posted a reply on the forums to clearly state that it was his idea to change this part of the story and it seems he has the science to back it up:

“I spent a few weeks interviewing scientists in this and relative fields, including a forensic archaeologist. My father was a classics professor for thirty years, so I had a need to appeal to the scientific community as a way of respecting him. What I learned from the scientists was this: Using thermite or similar explosives to detonate the ice directly over the ship is a “remarkably stupid idea that no scientist of merit would choose to do.” It endangers the very artifact or site you’re trying to access. Improperly done, you can have a few million tons of ice come down and destroy the thing you’re trying to get to. The way it’s done is: You dig in (with explosives, perhaps) nearby and find a route on a horizontal path to the ship in order to slowly excavate it or explore it. If you need to come in from the top, you only do that with a tunnel using drills. But a route from the side is the scientifically sound concept,” Heisserer writes.

The screenwriter goes on to tackles the issue of freeing the Thing from the ice.

“My two archaeologists watched the movie and had me pause it there, asking “Why would they dig out the creature that way? That makes no sense.” I asked them to explain, and they said it was a similar principle to the space ship: If you go in from the top to dig out the creature from the ice, you’re making the job ridiculously hard on yourself. You have to lift it up. It requires more equipment. Whereas someone with a little smarts would instead dig in through the side. That’s where the director had the idea of the creature bursting out on its own through the top, so we wouldn’t have to shine a light on the rather awkward and unwieldy approach to removing the Thing,” he writes.

There’s quite a sound rationale in Eric’s thinking and it does highlight the fact that as great as Carpenter’s film is – the science in it is occasionally flawed.

Check out his posts on the Thing forum here.

New Juliette-Thing vid from ADI

As production on ADI’s new Thing-fan inspired creature feature Harbinger Down looms, the lovely folks at ADI have released, just for you, another in their series of behind the scenes looks at their work on The Thing prequel. This time it’s Juliette’s turn! 

Some great concept art in this vid that shows you how much thought went into the creature design for the film.

New Q&A from Lars the Viking!

Lars is easily top of most Prequel fan’s favourite character list. Even die-hard Prequel disbelievers have a small, soft spot for this character. So, we were thrilled when Jørgen Langhelle who plays him kindly agreed to take time out from his busy schedule to reminisce about his work on The Thing Prequel.

Jørgen Langhelle as Lars

Jørgen Langhelle as Lars

Check out the Q&A here, where Jørgen reveals all about his fellow Norwegians (dubbed “The Wild Bunch” on set), the secret name of Lars’ dog, Polar Bears, what it’s like to shoot someone with a flame thrower and how some of the Norwegian subtitles weren’t quite right.


ADI Exclusive: Autopsy Thing

ADI’s Alec Gillis has been slaving away on the script for their fan-powered creature feature Harbinger Down, but while we wait for that to take shape, ADI have given us another Thing exclusive – a video and still of the Autopsy Thing!

Alec says: “One of the few pieces in THE THING prequel to remain untouched by digital manipulation, this charred alien corpse was a fun exercise in contrasting textures and finishes. Charred matte black opaque external surfaces slammed up against wet translucent internals made this dead ‘Thing’ live. Did we say untouched? The Henrik replica inside was painted over digitally.

Autopsy Thing

As as side note, we showed Ridley Scott a photo of the silicone head of Henrik and he asked if he could keep it. He said it was the closest thing he’d seen to what he felt the Engineers in PROMETHEUS should look like. We didn’t get the job on PROMETHEUS, but we see a resemblance!”

We did it! Harbinger Down Funded!

Well it went down to the wire but we did it. ADI’s fan-powered practical creature feature Harbinger Down was not only fully funded on Kickstarter but earned a whopping $384,181 at the close of the crowd funding campaign.

We’re so excited to have been involved and can’t wait to see it evolve from production to the big screen.

ADI’s Alec Gillis was kind enough to write a special message just for us:

“Hi Thulies! May I have the honor of calling you ‘Harbies’ too? Okay, we’ll wait to see what you think ofHarbinger Down before I get too bold. All I can say is THANKS! You were the ones who started this, and you helped tow this boat out to open waters. We plan to do this right, so please be patient with the process. Bread’s gotta bake; monsters gotta gestate. Tom and I truly appreciate your undying belief in this project. We’ll do our best to deliver! Just you watch!” -alec

Check out the Harbinger Down website at harbingerdown.com for the latest updates.

2 days to go – help out Harbinger Down

Harbinger DownHelp ADI (the team behind the practical effects in The Thing Prequel) create a completely CGI-free creature feature extravaganza by lending your support to their kickstarter funding campaign. There’s just two days to go and the $350,000 total is tantalisingly close.

Find out more and lend your support at www.kickstarter.com/projects/1117671683/harbinger-down-a-practical-creature-fx-film

Give as much as you can and share the link far and wide. This is probably the closest we’ll get to seeing what the Thing prequel could have been. Support tradition and be a part of history.



ADI to make Thing Fan-inspired, Practical FX movie

On the back of Thing fan support, the practical effects maestros behind the The Thing Prequel hope to shoot a completely practical effects-based movie inspired by The Thing – and they need your help!

Here’s ADI’s Alec Gillis with an exclusive video just for you announcing the project:

To say we’re excited here at Thulestation.com is a massive understatement. We’re over the moon! Instead of waiting in vain for Hollywood to come around, Alec and Tom have listened to the fans and turned to crowd funding site Kickstarter for help to make the project a reality.

Harbinger Down: A Practical Creature FX Film“, is a labor of love inspired by the overwhelmingly positive response from Thing fans on thulestation.com, The Thing Legacy Facebook page and Outpost 31. Alec Gillis will write and direct. Tom Woodruff Jr will produce. Aliens legend Lance Henriksen is set to star!

“The support that you and your members have given ADI has been truly tremendous and inspiring. So much so, Alec and Tom decided to do a film ‘The Thing’ inspired. Things they wanted to do on ‘The Thing’ will be put into effect. There will be no digital creatures in this film,” ADI said in an exclusive interview for thulestation.com.

Many of us were gutted by the replacement of Tom and Alec’s wonderfully imaginative and skilfully constructed creature set pieces by digital counterparts in the Thing Prequel, especially after having viewed the many behind-the-scenes videos released by ADI.

“We want to prove that good movies don’t have to cost 100 million dollars. We want to prove that there are non-traditional alternatives for filmmakers. We want to prove that practical creature effects still have a place in modern film-making,” they said.

ADI are seeking 350K to fund the project, but hopefully we can help them surpass that.

Head over to ADI’s Kickstarter Campaign page to lend your financial support. You can also help by sharing the link and letting your friends and contacts know about the project on social media. We’ll keep you updated on thulestation.com and you can also get the latest updates on the ADI Facebook page.

You can also check out their exclusive video for Outpost31 (that features the Thing graveyard).