Alien, also known as Alien: The Movie Novel, is a 1979 photonovel adaptation of the film Alien, written and edited by Richard J. Anobile and published by Avon Publications.

Publisher's Summary


The commercial starship Nostromo streaks toward a momentous encounter in the silent, star-winking night. It is a routine mission for the seven astronauts aboard, until an urgent signal from the ship's computer awakens them from hypersleep. Compelled to investigate a transmission of unknown origin, on a barren planetoid, they discover the remains of a derelict spacecraft — and something else, an alien power determined to kill them all.

Without realizing it, they bring the alien on to the Nostromo, where they are unable to escape the horror, or destroy it.


The photonovel or "movie novel" adaptation of Alien is comparable in format to a comic book, in that it uses a series of sequential images annotated with text, typically dialogue, to tell the story. However, instead of using original artwork as would a comic, it instead uses still images taken from the film itself.

Photonovels were popular in the 1970s and early 1980s before home video achieved mass-market success, as they provided a way for fans to relive the visuals of the film long after leaving the cinema. However, with the boom in VHS systems in the 1980s, the photonovel concept essentially died out, though some are still published. Other notable films that had accompanying photonovels published include Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Grease, Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978), Outland, Star Trek: The Motion Picture and Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (the latter both by Richard J. Anobile, author of the Alien photonovel).