I've always considered the scene in which Ripley travels back into the hive to save Newt in Aliens, the most iconic scene from any of the Alien movies.

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It annoyed me that they killed off Newt and Hicks in the opening credits of Alien3. I assumed the powers that be wanted to go with the new prison planet story line and had no need for Hicks or Newt.

But was there ever an official Alien3 story in the works in which Hicks and Newt survive? (...at least past the opening credits)

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    Aah, I see where you're confused. Alien and Aliens are documentaries. Alien3 is a ripe pile of trash invented for profit. We don't know what happened to anyone after aliens because our records of future history end there. We'll just have to wait till we catch up with their timeline to know the truth – Kai Qing Apr 21 '16 at 0:06

It appears there's an entire blog post that addresses this completely here.

Here is an excerpt of the blog, which describes the plot line of the characters within this book written by Mark Verheiden (non-canon):

Aliens: Book One picks up with Newt as a disturbed young woman plagued by nightmares of Acheron. As we meet her, she is confined to a mental institution. Similarly, Hicks is also disturbed by his memories of LV426. He is shunned by his peers, who deride and accuse him of being infected with some alien disease. This one-time “rock of Gibraltar” and cool-headed Corporal now lives as a pariah, prone to drunkenness and outbursts of frustration. The overall story concerns Earthly interest in obtaining an Alien as a bio-weapon. Hicks is recruited to train a squad of Marines to take on an apparent Alien threat, though this is really a ruse by a Dr. Orona to obtain samples. Meanwhile, Newt’s doctors decide that her nightmares and outbursts are too extreme to handle and plan to lobotomise her.

And the blog even described the first script written for the film's screenplay, which was rejected by the producers:

In the first Alien III script, by cyberpunk author William Gibson, the Sulaco still drifts through space with its sleeping cargo (it doesn’t seem like anyone gets home on time in this series.) The ship enters the territory of the Union of Progressive Peoples (essentially, communists) and is boarded. Inside, Ripley, Newt, and Hicks are still in stasis. Bishop’s cryotube however is home to an Alien egg, which is nestled within his entrails. The U.P.P. take Bishop’s body and send the Sulaco back into drift, where it eventually comes into contact with the Company. Now boarded by Marines, Ripley’s cryotube is damaged in a firefight between the soldiers and a spontaneously appearing Alien (later, a restored Bishop simply states that the Alien Queen “somehow deposited genetic material on the ship.”)

Throughout Gibson’s Alien III, Ripley’s life hangs precariously in the balance, Newt is shipped off to her grandparents on Earth early on, and Hicks slugs on as the protagonist along with Bishop, with both striving to keep the out-of-commission Ripley alive whilst concurrently battling an Alien threat. Producers David Giler and Walter Hill liked Gibson’s script, but were unhappy that the author had not “opened up” the story further in his two drafts. This dissatisfaction, and with the end of the Cold War relegating the plot to an anachronism, saw the script being booted. The next script kept the concept of a male lead but scrapped any notion of Hicks, Newt, Bishop, or Ripley returning.

And thanks to Richard's comment below:

It might interest you to know that Foster originally planned to have Newt survive the crash (in the novelisation). He was told by the studio that under no circumstances was he even allowed to imply it. They saw her death as an essential event. - Richard

  • Was this book ever considered canonical? There were a bunch of comics from Dark Horse that acted as a sequel to Aliens as well, but they were never considered canon. – phantom42 Jan 21 '16 at 13:48
  • I believe the only canonical books were the novelizations of the films and a mini series of books set between the first and second films, however I thought it was worth a mention since it particularly describes the alternative fates of both characters. The rejected script is more relevant. – John Bell Jan 21 '16 at 13:52
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    It might interest you to know that Foster originally planned to have Newt survive the crash (in the novelisation). He was told by the studio that under no circumstances was he even allowed to imply it. They saw her death as an essential event. – Valorum Jan 21 '16 at 14:03

There were actually several scenarios of both of them surviving. The list at https://www.avpcentral.com/hicks-newt-alternate-fates brings out the following fates:

  1. Earth Hive Trilogy - events take place 13 years after Aliens, both survive and help saving Earth from Xenomorphs.
  2. Williams Gibsons Alien 3 script - set immediately after Aliens, Hicks in the main character, Newt goes to Earth to live with grandparents
  3. Aliens: Colonial Marines: Stasis Interrupted - The guy who was killed in Alien 3 wasn't Hicks. It was some mercenary called Turk. Hicks is taken prisoner by Weyland-Yutani but is rescued afterwards by other marines. Newt is still killed.
  4. Neill Blokampps Alien 5 concept - set 30 years after Aliens, the plot details are unknown but Hicks is badly scarred. This movie (if ever made) would wipe away Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection as if never made.
  5. Kenner Action figure comics - Hicks is part of a crew of bug killers who have whacky adventures after Aliens (both Drake and Apone are also resurrected). Hicks has no scarring and Newt is never mentioned.
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    You guys are right, I edited my answer to be more appropriate. Sorry, I am new here. – Weyland Nov 4 '17 at 23:55

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