Rafe Spall explains controversial ‘snake petting’ in Prometheus

It was among the less plausible moments in 'Prometheus', but now we may have some sort of explanation...

Rafe Spall has spoken about his much-discussed 'alien snake-petting' scene in Ridley Scott's 'Alien' prequel.

[Related story: Prometheus writer won't be penning sequel]

Spall plays scientist Millburn in the film, who [spoiler alert!] is dispatched by the terrifying alien snake after inexplicably going in to stroke it.

It is among many issues fans and critics had about the film, and has been much discussed as one of the failures of the plot.

“I'm going to clear this up once and for all,” he told Digital Spy.

“My character is a biologist, and there was a big scene that was cut, which was me discovering life [on the planet] for the first time. I find one of the baby snakes. The big snake is quite scary, but I find his little brother.

“And I'm like 'this is extraordinary, this is me as a biologist finding life in space for the first time', and I'm really excited.

“You know how David Attenborough gets up close to animals, it was that sort of thing. So I then see the big snake, and think 'this is even better than the small snake!' And I think that snake is not scary, because I've seen the small snake, and he's not scary.

“So that's why. It was logical. But the scene was cut, what can you do.”

So there we have it... Millburn was just excited to see a big terrifying alien snake. Makes sense...