Iconic Alien weapon on Leeds display

ICONIC PROP: The M-41A Pulse Rifle was in the Aliens film series.
ICONIC PROP: The M-41A Pulse Rifle was in the Aliens film series.
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Sci-fi fans in Leeds can see a piece of movie history up close and personal in the city.

The Royal Armouries museum has an iconic weapon from the original Alien film on display, to coincide with the latest instalment in the popular film franchise Alien: Covenant.

Acquired by the museum in 2015, the M-41A Pulse Rifle was made for the 1986 Aliens film and refurbished for sequel Alien 3 in 1992.

As with much of the weaponry used in Aliens, the M-41A was personally designed by the film’s director James Cameron, with the futuristic military rifle being built by British armourer Simon Atherton.

The rifle is a particular favourite with fans of the franchise.

Jonathan Ferguson, Curator of Firearms at Royal Armouries, said: “At the Royal Armouries we’re involved in an HLF-funded project called ‘Collecting Cultures’, which for us means collecting, researching, and displaying arms and armour from film and TV.

“We’ve acquired several important pieces, but for me as a huge fan of the ‘Alien’ movies, the proverbial Holy Grail was the iconic ‘M-41A Pulse Rifle’ from ‘Aliens’ (1986) and ‘Alien 3’ (1992).

“James Cameron and armourers Bapty and Co came up with one of cinema’s classic weapons.

“That is a futuristic yet believable military rifle with its own distinctive sound.

“I was so pleased to be able to secure one of the surviving examples for the national collection of arms and armour.

“With the new ‘Alien: Covenant’ movie just coming out, we thought it would be a good time to get this piece of cinema history on display.”

You can see the Pulse Rifle in the museum’s Self Defence gallery. For more info, visit bit.ly/2ffZSNh.