Carlo Rambaldi was an Italian special effects artist who is most famous for designing the title character of the film E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982) and the mechanical head-effects for the creature in Alien (1979) (for both Rambaldi won an Oscar).
Alien franchise credit
- Profondo Rosso (Deep Red) (1975)
- King Kong (1976)
- Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
- Nightwing (1979)
- Possession (1981)
- Dune (1984)
- King Kong Lives (1986)
- Cameron's Closet (1988)
In the early days of his career, Rambaldi did special effects work for such Italian films as Siegfried (1957), Medusa vs the Son of Hercules (1962), Bloody Pit of Horror (1965), Planet of the Vampires (1965), Hercules and the Princess of Troy (1965), The Odyssey (1968), Twitch of the Death Nerve (1972), Night of the Devils (1972), Andy Warhol's Frankenstein (1974) and Andy Warhol's Dracula (1974). He also created the monsters for Silver Bullet (1985) and Conan the Destroyer (1984).
Rambaldi had the distinction of being the first special effects artist to be required to prove that his work on a film was not 'real'. Dog-mutilation scenes in the 1971 film A Lizard in a Woman's Skin were so convincingly visceral that its director, Lucio Fulci, was prosecuted for offences relating to animal cruelty. Fulci would have served a two-year prison sentence had Rambaldi not exhibited the film's array of props to a courtroom, proving that the scene was not filmed using real animals.
Rambaldi also has worked on Profondo Rosso (Deep Red) (1975), King Kong (1976), Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977), Nightwing (1979), Possession (1981), Dune (1984), King Kong Lives (1986), and Cameron's Closet (1988). Rambaldi won two Oscars for Visual Effects in Alien (1979) and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982). In addition to the two, he also won a third Special Achievement Academy Award for visual effects in John Guillermin's King Kong (1976).
Rambaldi died on August 10, 2012 in Lamezia Terme, Calabria, where he had lived for many years.