A group of lucky New Jersey teenagers got to meet Ripley, believe it or not.
Sigourney Weaver surprised the emotional young cast of “Alien: The Play” at North Bergen High School Friday night after an encore performance of their sold-out show.
The school’s drama club performs a show annually. Instead of “Guys and Dolls” or “The Glass Menagerie,” this year the group decided on “Alien.” It became an international sensation in March when clips of the sci-fi stage production filmed by parents went viral online — racking up more than 3 million views. Director Ridley Scott gave it his blessing and donated $5,000 towards the encore.
“It was thrilling,” Weaver told the cast, crew and packed house of 830 supporters. “We were always looking under our chairs and over our heads because the alien was really scary!”
The actress, who originated the role of Ripley in the 1979 classic film, sat front row center in the packed auditorium. When the character of Brett (played by a promising comedic actor named Ibrahim Jaludi) was killed by the ingeniously designed fully-grown alien, Weaver’s hands flew to her face and she visibly shook.
The show was staged on a small budget of $3,500 and performed by a dedicated cast of 9 actors. Director Perfecto Cuervo adapted the film into a 90 minute, intermissionless play with jaw-dropping special effects (exploding eggs, hibernation pods, detailed space ship operation panels and more) requiring a crew of about 20 students.