“I invite you all to take the ‘pull my finger’ challenge.”
It was just a couple days ago we heard Guy Pearce would be playing Peter Weyland in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus opening June 8th. Now a fake TED talk delivered by Pearce, while in character, lets us know what to expect from his half of Weyland-Yutani, the corporation from Alien. The video takes place at the 2023 TED Conference, while Alien was set in 2122. (The real TED conference is currently in progress at Long Beach, California). This clip, which won’t be in the film, was written by Damon Lindelof and directed by Luke Scott (Ridley Scott’s son).
Lindelof explains in an interview why the video invokes TED and is being hosted at the TED website:
I said, “I’ll write this thing, and we’ll put it in front of you guys, and if you think it’s cool, we would love to platform it at TED, and make it only viewable through TED.” Because I liked the idea of exposing a more general audience to, “Wait a minute, I’ve never heard of this thing. There’s more talks here.” I thought it could be mutually beneficial — as opposed to overtly cram-it-down-your-face viral marketing, which I don’t think anyone wanted to do.
Speak for yourself. I love having things overtly crammed down my face.
The TED website also offers an official bio for the Weyland character:
Sir Peter Weyland was born in Mumbai, India at the turn of the Millennium. The progeny of two brilliant parents; His mother, an Oxford Educated Professor of Comparative Mythology, his father, a self-taught software Engineer, it was clear from an early age that Sir Peter’s capabilities would only be eclipsed by his ambition to realize them. By the age of fourteen, he had already registered a dozen patents in a wide range of fields from biotech to robotics, but it would be his dynamic break-throughs in generating synthetic atmosphere above the polar ice cap that gained him worldwide recognition and spawned an empire.
In less than a decade, Weyland Corporation became a worldwide leader in emerging technologies and launched the first privatized industrial mission to leave the planet Earth. “There are other worlds than this one,” Sir Peter boldly declared, “And if there is no air to breathe, we will simply have to make it.”
Peter Weyland has been a magnet for controversy since he announced his intent to build the first convincingly humanoid robotic system by the end of the decade.
Whether challenging the ethical boundaries of medicine with nanotechnology or going toe to toe with the Vatican itself on the issue of gene-therapy sterilization, Sir Peter prides himself on his motto, “If we can, we must.” After a three year media blackout, Weyland has finally emerged to reveal where he’s heading next. Wherever that may be, we will most certainly want to follow.
Check out the video below to see Pearce’s interpretation of the character: a creepy, slick-haired megalomaniac the crowd still applauds because he gets sh-t done.