Dan O’Bannon


Dan O’Bannon was a legendary American filmmaker, screenwriter, and visual effects artist who left an indelible mark on the film industry. He was best known for his work on the iconic sci-fi horror movie Alien, which he co-wrote and provided the visual effects for. However, his impact went beyond just one film, as he worked on numerous other projects throughout his career. In this blog post, we’ll explore the legacy of Dan O’Bannon and how his work has influenced the world of film and beyond.

The Early Years

Dan O'Bannon

Dan O’Bannon’s Childhood and Early Career

Dan O’Bannon was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1946. He developed a love for science fiction at a young age, which would later inspire his work in the film industry. After studying film at the University of Southern California, he began his career as a visual effects artist, working on films such as Star Wars and Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

Collaboration with John Carpenter

O’Bannon’s big break came in 1974 when he collaborated with director John Carpenter on the film Dark Star. O’Bannon wrote the screenplay and also provided the visual effects for the movie. The film became a cult classic and helped launch O’Bannon’s career as a screenwriter.

The Alien Franchise

Co-Writing Alien

O’Bannon’s most famous work is undoubtedly his co-writing of the 1979 sci-fi horror classic Alien. He worked closely with director Ridley Scott to create a terrifying and unforgettable film that has since become a cultural touchstone. O’Bannon’s contributions to the film included the iconic chestburster scene and the design of the titular creature.

The Legacy of Alien

Alien was a critical and commercial success upon its release and has since become one of the most beloved and influential sci-fi films of all time. The film spawned a franchise that includes sequels, prequels, and spin-offs, and has inspired countless other films and TV shows in the genre.

Other Work

Return of the Living Dead

After the success of Alien, O’Bannon continued to work in the horror genre. One of his most notable projects was the 1985 film Return of the Living Dead, which he wrote and directed. The film was a critical and commercial success and has since become a cult classic.

Banking Career

In the later years of his life, O’Bannon moved away from the film industry and began a career in banking. He worked as a loan officer for a bank in Buffalo, Missouri, where he lived until his death in 2009.


Dan O’Bannon’s legacy is a testament to his creativity and talent as a filmmaker and artist. His work on Alien and other projects has had a lasting impact on the film industry and popular culture as a whole. While he may have left the film industry behind in his later years, his contributions to the genre will never be forgotten.


Who is Dan O’Bannon?

Dan O’Bannon was an American screenwriter, director, and visual effects designer. He is best known for his work on the science fiction horror film Alien and for co-writing the cult classic comedy sci-fi film, Dark Star.

What is Dan O’Bannon’s legacy?

Dan O’Bannon’s legacy is his contribution to the science fiction and horror film genres. He was a pioneer in the use of computer-generated imagery (CGI) and his work on Alien and other films has inspired generations of filmmakers.

What is Alien?

Alien is a 1979 science fiction horror film directed by Ridley Scott and written by Dan O’Bannon. The film follows the crew of the commercial space tug Nostromo, who encounter a deadly extraterrestrial creature on their return journey to Earth.

What is Dark Star?

Dark Star is a 1974 science fiction comedy film directed by John Carpenter and co-written by Dan O’Bannon. The film follows the crew of the dilapidated spacecraft Dark Star as they attempt to destroy unstable planets in a distant star system.

What is the connection between Dan O’Bannon and banking?

Dan O’Bannon worked in the banking industry before pursuing a career in film. However, his legacy is primarily focused on his contributions to the science fiction and horror film genres.

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