If there's any one reason to be excited about this summer's Men in Black III, it's that the 3D sci-fi comic book threequel will once again feature extraterrestrials imagined by the illustrious Rick Baker: the seven-time Oscar-winning makeup artist and special effects supervisor responsible for designing the namesakes of such films as Harry and the Hendersons, The Nutty Professor, Planet of the Apes (the Tim Burton version), Hellboy, and The Wolfman, among numerous others.
Today, we have half a dozen new set photos that offer an early taste of the "retro" style aliens Baker has cooked up for the time-traveling third installment in the Men in Black movie franchise - including, a better look at Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords) in his getup as time-space continuum-disrupting, other-worldly biker Boris.
For a sneak peek of those aforementioned "retro" alien critters, have a look through the gallery below:
Baker clearly hasn't pulled any punches, when it comes to creating fantastic new alien designs for the third MIB flick. He's also clearly taking advantage of the film's 1960s setting as an excuse to intentionally reference and imitate such classic sci-fi B-movie creature designs as the little green men with giant craniums, Creature from the Black Lagoon-style aquatic extraterrestrials, etc.
Similarly, Clement as Boris looks like a worthy addition the MIB series pantheon of baddies, with his (literally) hollow-black eyes and frightening features. His physical appearance lacks the grotesque edge that Vincent D'Onofrio had as Vincent/The Bug in the first movie, but Boris already comes off as an improvement on the overly CGI-reliant Serleena (Lara Flynn Boyle) from Men in Black II.
That sentiment also pretty much sums up Men in Black III in general: it appears to mark an improvement over what many (most?) moviegoers consider to be a lackluster second installment in the series.
Despite a tumultuous production that both Baker and director Barry Sonnenfeld have admitted left them thinking the final product would turn out terribly, early footage from Men in Black III suggests the film should actually be okay. It might not win brownie points for originality or having the most coherent of plotlines - but still, this movie so far appears to be far from the disaster many have been anticipating.
We will find out for certain if that is the case when Men in Black III hits 2D, 3D, and IMAX 3D theaters around the U.S. on May 25th, 2012.