Sold-Out North Bergen High Production Gets Financial Backing From Legendary Ridley Scott, Who Directed 1979 Film On Big Screen


NORTH BERGEN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Forget Broadway. It’s a New Jersey high school play that is still getting plenty of praise, not just from the community, but from Hollywood.

So much so, the students are bringing it back one more time, CBS2’s Valerie Castro reported Wednesday.

A viral video of an out-of-this-world school play had the internet going haywire last month.

With more than 3 million views, North Bergen High School’s rendition of the film “Alien” even got the attention of Sigourney Weaver, the star of the 1979 science fiction classic.

Behind The Scenes At North Bergen High School’s ‘Alien’

 

“I just want to say, it looked incredible. You put so much heart and soul into that,” the actress said in a social media post.

MORESigourney Weaver, Ridley Scott Praise New Jersey High School’s Production Of “Alien”

The spring play is becoming such a hit it’s coming back for a sold-out encore this Friday night. Ridley Scott, the director of the original film, is funding it. He donated $5,000 so the school could rent the proper equipment.

Take a closer look at some of the props and costumes created by a New Jersey high school’s students for their stage production of the sci-fi horror film “Alien.” (credit: CBS New York)

“When I heard that, I was like, oh my God, that’s a lot more than we initially spent, which was about $3,500,” play director Perfecto Cuervo said.

All 19 crew members and eight cast members are returning for the performance, including the lead, 18-year-old Gabriella Delacruz, who plays “Ripley.” They’ve spent their entire spring break getting ready for it.

“We have been practicing every day and every day we act like there is a full audience right in front of us,” Delacruz said.

PHOTOS: Behind The Scenes At North Bergen High School’s “Alien”

And the teen underneath the alien mask has been rehearsing his eerie walk.

“Show more people the hard work that we have done,” sophomore Xavier Perez said.

It’s his incredible costume and the others’ that have people amazed by their performance, especially since all of it is made out of recycled items.

Art director Steven Defendini said it took him and his students at least 500 hours to put all of the costumes together and up until the show on Friday, they will be working on them.

“It’s good that all the work that the kids do is shown. It really puts a focus on arts and theater,” Defendini said.

An encore presentation has validated their hard work and talent.

The show is already sold out, all 830 seats. But the school will put on another play next spring, based on director Scott’s Academy Award-winning film “Gladiator.”