- "You know, when you get sick you think about your life and how you're going to be remembered. You know what I realize will happen when I go? Ten percent fall in share prices, maybe twelve. That's it."
- ―Weyland (from Alien vs. Predator)
In 2004, he organized an expedition to Bouvetøya, Antarctica to investigate an ancient Pyramid buried beneath the ice there. The Pyramid was discovered to be a Yautja temple and hunting ground where the Predators would breed Xenomorphs for use in their Hunts, and the expedition soon became caught up in the battle between the two species. Weyland was killed in the Pyramid by Scar when he attacked the Predator with an improvised flamethrower.
Weyland's mother passed away when he was just two years old, leaving him to be raised by his harsh father and a succession of nannies. At the age of just 21, he graduated from Harvard with an M.B.A., and following his father's death, he inherited the family's satellite mapping company. Under the young Weyland's supervision, the family business grew to be the largest satellite systems operation in the world within a decade. During this period of rapid growth, Weyland acquired numerous other telecommunications enterprises, including a Midwest cable franchise and a telecom grid based in Nevada.
Weyland's keen business sense also led him to diversify into other areas, and Weyland Industries began buying a string of hotels around the world, culminating with the construction of a casino complex in Las Vegas. The company also became involved in the development of cutting-edge robotics, nanotechnology and medical acoustics. In 2004, Weyland featured in an issue of Scientific American that labelled him the "pioneer of modern robotics", and he was considered the foremost financial supporter of cutting-edge scientific research in the world. Weyland's plans for pushing the boundaries of human endeavor did not stop there, however, and he intended to establish mankind's first lunar base in the Sea of Tranquillity within forty years.
Unfortunately, Weyland's huge business success was offset by personal misfortune when he was diagnosed with advanced bronchogenic carcinoma — lung cancer — and told that the affliction would be terminal. Owing to his status as the figurehead of Weyland Industries, Weyland concealed this illness from the public.
- "My experts tell me it's a pyramid. What they can't agree on is who built it, and when."
- ―Weyland, to the assembled expedition (from Alien vs. Predator)
On October 3, 2004, Weyland Industries Satellite PS12 detected a heat bloom beneath the Antarctic island of Bouvetøya, which revealed an ancient pyramid complex buried deep beneath the ice. Weyland immediately began assembling an expedition to investigate the discovery, employing Max Stafford to organize the recruitment of the necessary outside experts in light of his own poor health. Unknown to the majority of the expedition members, Stafford was also hired to provide expedition security against any other interested corporations they may encounter, in the form of his private military team. The recruited expedition members met aboard the icebreaker Piper Maru, pushing its way through the Antarctic ice pack towards Bouvet Island, where Weyland revealed to them their hitherto undisclosed objective.
When the team arrived at Razorback Point Whaling Station, directly above the pyramid, the expedition's guide, Lex Woods, learned of Weyland's illness. She confronted him regarding the dangers of his continuing, but he rebuked her, pointing out that the success of the expedition was key to preserving both his own legacy and that of his company. Somewhat placated, Lex allowed Weyland to accompany the team sent down to the pyramid through the access shaft cut, unknown to the explorers, by the Yautja. During the descent, a malfunction in the winch assembly used to lower the team almost caused Weyland to fall to his death, but Lex's quick thinking saved his life.
Exploring the pyramid
Arriving at the pyramid deep under the ice, Weyland considered his dream of claiming a scientific find for the ages complete. He accompanied the research team as they began their exploration of the interior, splitting the group in two so that they could cover more ground. When the team discovered Yaujta Plasmacasters inside a sarcophagus within the structure, Weyland ordered Stafford to recover them for further study, against the protests of Dr. Miller and the other experts; in doing so, the team triggered the periodic shifting of the pyramid, activating a mechanism that caused several team members to be impregnated by Facehuggers, and also made themselves targets for Scar, Celtic and Chopper, who had arrived at the site for an initiation hunt.
Between hosting Xenomorphs and being ambushed by Yautja, most of the exploration team was killed in short order, although in spite of the death and destruction Weyland remained steadfast in his determination to escape the pyramid with the technology they had discovered, thereby securing his place in history. However, as he fled the carnage with Lex and Sebastian, now the only other survivors, he realized that his illness was slowing them down and dooming them all. He implored the others to leave him behind and prepared to face the pursuing Scar alone, hoping to buy the others time to escape. However, the Predator refrained from killing him when it detected that he was dying of cancer, evidently considering him unworthy prey. Enraged by this turn of events, Weyland attacked Scar using a flamethrower improvised from his medicinal inhaler and a flare, causing the Predator to turn and impale Weyland on its Wristblades, killing him before carelessly throwing his body aside.
Weyland had predicted that his death would have little impact on the world beyond a temporary drop in the value of his company's shares, but in reality his actions were long remembered, at least in certain circles. Following his death, his company would go on to trade with Borgia Industries, who had acquired Yautja technology of their own from another Predator in Neonopolis. Even centuries later, Weyland's discoveries on Bouvet Island would influence the activities of the Weyland-Yutani Corporation.
Personality and Traits
A wealthy, powerful and ambitious industrialist, Weyland was seemingly humbled by the diagnosis of his terminal cancer, the illness triggering an almost fanatical desire to make a real and lasting impact on the world before his death. Unlike his "descendants" and later executives of Weyland-Yutani, Charles was an honorable man, seemingly devoid of the greed, ruthlessness and power-hungry tendencies that personified later Weylands, and he directed his company to pursue of largely humanitarian goals, including medical and communications research. His selflessness was perhaps best displayed when he sacrificed himself to Scar in the hope that it might buy time for Lex and Sebastian to escape the pyramid.
However, despite this, Weyland clearly still held some of the single-minded ambition that could be seen in later executives of the corporation he helped to found. Notably, his fascination in the advanced Yautja technology the team recovered seemed to momentarily outweigh his consideration for the lives of the people lost on the Bouvetøya expedition, a fact that brought him into contention with his otherwise close associate Max Stafford. That brief spat between him and Stafford actually caused Weyland to feel regret.
Weyland was extremely stubborn in spite of any physical handicaps, a trait that reminded Lex of her late father, Colonel Alexander Woods.
While unarmed on the expedition, Weyland carried a large inhaler to help mitigate the symptoms of his lung cancer which, combined with a flare, made a makeshift flamethower that he used against Scar. He momentarily wielded an ice axe against Scar, but was quickly disarmed.
- Weyland actor Lance Henriksen is almost certainly the most prolific figure in the Alien franchise. As well as Charles Bishop Weyland, he portrayed Lance Bishop in Aliens and Michael Bishop in Alien3, and also lent his voice and likeness to the characters of Karl Bishop Weyland and another Bishop android in the video games Aliens vs. Predator and Aliens: Colonial Marines, respectively.
- Furthermore, Henriksen appeared as Detective Hal Vukovich in The Terminator, which was written and directed by Aliens director James Cameron. In the film, his character is killed by the titular cyborg; this, combined with his deaths in Aliens and Alien vs. Predator, makes Henriksen one of two actors who have been killed on-screen by an Alien, a Predator and a Terminator, a dubious honor he shares with fellow Aliens actor Bill Paxton.
- Paul W. S. Anderson, who wrote and directed Alien vs. Predator, has since revealed that he wrote the role of Weyland specifically for Henriksen, and had always hoped the actor would accept the role.
- The scene where Weyland plays with a pen whilst sat at his desk on board the Piper Maru is a clear homage to the scene in Aliens where Henriksen (as Bishop) performs the knife game on himself and Hudson. Likewise, the issue of Scientific American that labels Weyland a "pioneer of modern robotics" is a reference to Henriksen's appearance in Alien3, in which he claims to have designed the Bishop series of androids.
- Weyland is mentioned by Karl Bishop Weyland in several audio logs in the 2010 video game Aliens vs. Predator.
- Alien vs. Predator/novel
- Predator: Concrete Jungle (video game) (mentioned only)
- Aliens vs. Predator (video game) (mentioned only)
- Weyland's actor's (Lance Henriksen) current height is 5ft 8 (172.7 cm), so that is also how tall Weyland would have been.
- Paul W. S. Anderson (writer and director). Alien vs. Predator (2004), 20th Century Fox [DVD].
- Marc Cerasini. Alien vs. Predator, p. 47 (2004), HarperEntertainment.
- Marc Cerasini. Alien vs. Predator, p. 66 (2004), HarperEntertainment.
- Marc Cerasini. Alien vs. Predator, p. 67 (2004), HarperEntertainment.
- Predator: Concrete Jungle (2005), Eurocom, Sierra Entertainment, Vivendi Universal Games [PlayStation 2, Xbox].
- Paul W. S. Anderson, John Davis, Lance Henriksen, David Johnson, Tom Woodruff, Jr.. The Making of AVP (2005), 20th Century Fox [DVD].