Shane Black Explains How The Predator Will Reinvent The Franchise

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Yesterday, the first teaser trailer for Shane Black’s The Predator finally arrived, and it was definitely worth the wait.

Said to take place between the events of Predator 2 (1990) and Predators (2010), the flubbed 20th Century Fox reboot/sequel, The Predator will see the “universe’s most lethal hunters” enter the “small-town streets of suburbia…deadlier than ever before.”

During an on-set interview with Collider, director Shane Black clarified that his reimagining will both reinvent the film series and honor the previous installments, explaining the following:

“Well, I think that there’s a basic premise that has to be honoured every time you make a Predator film, and that ’s in some way, whatever the plot turns out to be, it has to, at some level, represent a hunt. But, beyond that, I think there’s infinite variability. It’s like monkey bars. You ever play on the jungle gym when you were a kid? It looks like they’re rigid and hard and it’d be hard to play on these things because they’re so rough, but if you go inside them there’s actually a lot of room to move around, you just know that the borders are there every once in a while.”

“Having genetically upgraded themselves with DNA from other species,” Black said that his film won’t see the titular hunter simply feast on a handful of characters, but rather explore what happens when “the Predators get a little more ambitious.”

“There’s an element of intrigue, and I think espionage/mystery, whatever. The government is involved in this, and it takes it to the level of what happens when the Predator strikes, these incursions are not just an every-once-in-a-while phenomenon known to a few but have come to the attention of an establishment that is actually set on preparing for and marshalling forces against these incoming Predator strikes.

And, so it’s that sort of what the next step is, when they get noticed, that’s kind of what we start as our jumping off point for what’s different. And also, what happens when the Predators get a little more ambitious? Maybe it’s not just a weekend anymore. So, we’ve had some fun with that.”

The decision to broaden the series’ scope is what will make the pic stand out from its predecessors, according to Black, as he also added:

“It’s the ambitiousness of not wanting to stay small and just wanting to pack as many different possibilities, themes, and characters. I think in the same way that Aliens succeeded so well that you had Bill Paxton and Jeanette Goldstein and Lance Henrikson that were popular. You had great characters. So, I think the death of some of the Predator movies has been a dearth of really intriguing characters that have development.

But, beyond that, I think this one is bigger and that it costs more…I know it costs more [laughter]. It’s a hammer over my head. But, that’s where the thriller part comes in. Change the scale, up the stakes and make it as thrilling as you can. I mean, there’s just so many set pieces and sequence, and the influences that we were going by are not sort of the spectacle. ”

The Predator Empire

After lighting up CinemaCon with “lots of blood, action and explosions,” things are looking good for The Predator, which is saying a lot considering where the reboot once stood. Having undergone reshoots in Vancouver earlier this year and watching a pair of release dates fall by the wayside, Shane Black’s reinvention of the extraterrestrial killing machine definitely has fans chomping at the bit now, following the teaser trailer’s release earlier this week.

Initially scheduled for a premiere this past February, which was then pushed to August, The Predator is currently slated for a September 14th release stateside later this year and will feature Boyd Holbrook, Olivia Munn, Trevante Rhodes, Keegan-Michael Key, Jacob Tremblay and Sterling K. Brown.

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