Six years ago, 20th Century Fox circled back to the well for a full-fledged reboot of Predator. In what should have been a return to form for the cult sci-fi series, particularly after those dreadful Alien crossover movies, Nimród Antal’s modern redo struggled to make much of an impact.
And so, our attention is now drawn to The Predator, Shane Black’s 2018 sequel that is out to recapture the spirit of the 1987 original, one in which Black himself starred in as Rick Hawkins. Now, The Nice Guys director has been elected at the helm of Fox’s overhaul, and is currently fine-tuning a script he penned with the help of Fred Dekker. Casting is already underway, and though it appeared The Predator had landed its first major star in Benicio Del Toro, we learned that the Guardians of the Galaxy actor has now been replaced by Boyd Holbrook (Logan). Not a moment too soon either, considering that Black is eyeing a production start in February.
Speaking to Collider, the director had this to say: “Right now we’re looking at probably beginning to mid February. I’m heading up to Vancouver in a week or two to go into a serious pre-production, so we’re on the cusp.”
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After dabbling with noir films and crime capers, Black is set to venture into horror territory with the 2018 tentpole, and the director reveals that the main goal is to steer The Predator toward typical sci-fi once more.
“I think the Predator movies have slightly veered from typical sci-fi in that there is a sort of thriller aspect to them. I think it should be scary, I think it should be funny, and I think ultimately it should be wondrous and about perceiving things that human beings very seldom get a chance to see… I don’t mean movie audiences I mean characters in the movie. I’m not saying the movie will be nothing anyone’s seen before (laughs).”
Plot details are practically non-existent at this stage, but the filmmaker did hint at the possibility of an R rating, particularly after the trailblazing success of Deadpool earlier in the year.
“Fox has been very cooperative. I mean part of it is the success they had with Deadpool, but I also made a case—and I think they agreed—that fans of the Predator generally, probably aren’t looking to go to see a PG-13-rated version of it. It would be more of a letdown if it was sort of tailored to a family friendly audience than if it were allowed to play out to the same scale and level that the first R-rated one did.”
The Predator has been penciled in for release on February 9, 2018, at which point Fox will unleash its overhauled sci-fi movie in IMAX theaters.