Staging a play in a high school is no easy feat, what with the limited budget and resources. But a New Jersey high school took the shoestring budget available to them to mount a stunning production of the sci-fi classic film Alien that managed to impress even top actors and directors from Hollywood.

The drama club of North Bergen High School put up Alien: The Play, a stage production from the school’s drama teacher, Perfecto Cuervo for two nights only. The production had 15 different sets and costumes, which included four astronaut outfits and two for aliens. The sets were built by a crew of students of the school and their art teacher, all of it with recycled material.

“We don’t have really any budget – we recycle everything, everything is repurposed and recycled 10 times over until we get the look we need,” Steven Defendini, the art teacher at the school, told BuzzFeed News. The astronaut suits were assembled using moving blankets and thrift store purchases.

“My inspiration was just that I’m a huge fan of the movie,” Cuervo, who spent two months adapting the screenplay for the stage, told Entertainment Weekly.

The audience at the show took videos and pictures that were posted widely online and even grabbed the attention of the twitter page of the original Ridley Scott film. The plot centres around the crew of the spaceship Nostromo, who are hunted down by a vicious alien over the course of the film.

The students even made a trailer that was released ahead of the opening night.


The positive reaction online led the North Bergen mayor to offer to fund more performances of the play.