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Riverdale’s New Threat is The PREDATOR (Yes, Really)

Riverdale’s latest twist is pitting Archie and his friends against Hollywood’s favorite alien hunter: The Predator. The comic book titled Archie vs. Predator 2 is set to launch on July 24th, and is guaranteed to make every other Riverdale threat The CW can come up with pale in comparison.

The five-issue series is a sequel to Archie vs. Predator, a crossover comic that was released in 2015. Alex de Campi, the writer of the previous installment, will be returning for the upcoming sequel along with Chilling Adventures of Sabrina artist Robert Hack. The story will continue on from where the previous comic left off, but is said to have a funny meta-commentary on corporate franchise reboots. Considering both Archie and The Predator have already been rebooted in film, comics, and television, they’ll have plenty to discuss… assuming they don’t kill eachother first.

Related: The Predator Wasn’t A Box Office Success – Here’s Why

In an interview with THR, Alex de Campi reassured readers that it is “massively important to me that both Archie and Predator fans feel like I’m handling their babies with love and respect and knowledge.” Though each comic is steeped in its usual humor and drama expected from a Riverdale story, there will be scares and violence aplenty to satisfy Predator fans. Robert Hack voiced his own excitement, saying “there’s so much to love about playing in this iconic universe,” and that creating art for a series like this “appeals to that subversive streak in me that wants to take the humor and the horror just that little bit too far.” 

Archie Comics have enjoyed some crazy stories and heightened teenage drama, which makes adding in a character like The Predator an exciting twist for their occasionally all-too-safe universe. Archie vs. Predator 2 will find Betty and Veronica at the forefront attempting to rescue their friends from the galaxy’s most vicious hunters. The series hasn’t held anything back when it comes to dismantling the safety net surrounding Riverdale. Both de Campi and Hack have ruthlessly killed off characters both old and new in the series’ previous installment, with the hopes of attracting more fans by bringing something new and out-of-this-world to the table.

Archie’s dependable and safe storyline in the comic books has proven to be an incredibly successful one since its initial release in 1941. His motley crew of friends, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead, have continued to garner attention with the release of Riverdale on the CW in 2017. Sabrina Spellman, another frequent friend of Archie’s in the comics, has also seen a very successful adaptation on Netflix with The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. All of these takes on the teenagers of Riverdale, and its neighboring city Greendale, have shown that these memorable characters are easy to like and can tackle even Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy.

The success of Riverdale has shown that fans will watch these familiar faces in far darker situations than what is featured in the comic books. Creators have taken these characters’ stories in plenty of wild and different directions, from solving murder mysteries to preventing their fellow students from being indoctrinated into a cult to signing Satan’s book for their dark baptism. Despite its ridiculous storyline, the addition of The Predator into the series is one that’s proven successful due to how well it managed to blend the series’ different tones. Riverdale’s stories have no limits, and Archie vs. Predator 2 is a wild ride that fans of any genre can appreciate.

More: Biggest Changes Riverdale Made From Archie Comics

Header Art by Fernando Ruiz

Source: THR


2019-04-04 01:04:31

Hannah Hoolihan

The Predator Is Getting A Stop Motion Holiday Short – Watch the Teaser

The Predator is set to take on Santa and his reindeer in the teaser for a new stop-motion animated holiday special from Comedy Central. Writer-director Shane Black brought the iconic Predator back to screens in 2018 in a reboot pitting the alien hunter against soldiers, scientists and an autistic child who uses his genius to discover the secrets of the alien’s tech.

This time around, the Predator sported genetic upgrades, making the character bigger and badder than ever. Audiences clearly didn’t embrace this new take on the Predator franchise however, as the film only managed to take in $51 million domestically and $160 million worldwide. The movie’s poor box office performance likely means that Fox won’t be revisiting the Predator franchise any time soon, even though the movie seemed to set up a sequel.

Related: 20 Things That Make No Sense About The Predator

Though the Predator may have gone on his last hunt as a big-screen character, he’ll get one more chance to wreak havoc later in December thanks to a new stop-motion animated holiday short. This time, the Predator will square off against his toughest enemy ever: Santa and his reindeer. The short is set to air on Comedy Central on December 19 at 10:30PM EST during BoJack Horseman. See the teaser trailer below:

The stop-motion style of the Predator holiday special is reminiscent of classics like Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, but of course since this is the Predator, the level of carnage promises to be a lot higher than in your normal holiday show. The teaser sees Sprinkles the Elf and the reindeer Blitzen getting ready for the “most merry mission of the year,” until the famous Predator three-dotted targeting laser appears on Blitzen. Blitzen then picks up a minigun like the one Jesse Ventura packed in the original Predator, and begins blasting away. But like Ventura, Blitzen meets a gory end as the Predator blows a hole clean through his mid-section.

Of course, this Predator special is completely tongue-in-cheek, as confirmed by its airing on Comedy Central during the always bizarre BoJack Horseman. Perhaps Predator fans who weren’t enamored with Shane Black’s take on the franchise will at least be able to get a few laughs out of the idea of the Predator squaring off against Santa and his reindeer in a weird and bloody send-up of classic stop-motion animated TV specials. The Predator itself is currently available on Digital, and comes out on on 4K Ultra HD, Blu-Ray and DVD on December 18.

More: 20 Strange Details About The Predator’s Anatomy

Source: 20th Century Fox



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2018-12-12 04:12:10

The Predator Wasn’t A Box Office Success – Here’s Why

Shane Black’s The Predator was not a box office success. The franchise launched back in 1987 with the Arnold Schwarzenegger vehicle Predator, which went on to become one of the most iconic titles of its era. Due to its success, Fox pursued followups, but failed to hit the mark multiple times. Predator 2 bottomed out at just $30.6 million domestically, and 2010’s Predators earned only $52 million in the States (lower than Predator’s unadjusted for inflation total). The first Alien vs. Predator movie was a modest commercial hit at $80.2 million, though its critical reception was far from ideal.

The hope was that Black (who starred in the ’87 original) would be able to tap into his sensibilities as a filmmaker and revitalize the Predator franchise. He had talked about wanting to make The Predator a must-see cinematic event on the level of other tentpole properties, but he fell way short of those goals. Less than a month after it opened in theaters, it’s safe to say The Predator landed with a thud.

The Predator’s Domestic Box Office

It’s no secret The Predator didn’t have the easiest path to the big screen. Black, unsatisfied with the third act, reshot the entire finale – but the changes didn’t stop there. A significant amount of the film was heavily altered, with entire storylines (good guy Predators) and characters (Edward James Olmos) left on the cutting room floor. As a result, The Predator ended up as a messy genre picture that didn’t feel fully developed. Most critics agreed the movie delivered high-octane (and violent) creature action, but came up well short in other areas. Nobody is expecting a Predator film to be an intimate character study, but it would have been nice if the core ensemble was somewhat memorable.

Related: The Predator Ending Explained

The mixed word-of-mouth essentially doomed the film from the get-go. Despite opening in the middle of September with holdover The Nun serving as its only high-profile competition, The Predator managed a weak $24.6 million in its first three days domestically. That figure is substantially less than the opening weekend for Alien vs. Predator ($38.2 million) and even below Predators ($24.7 million). For a movie looking to spawn multiple sequels, it was truly an inauspicious beginning.

Stumbling out of the gates, The Predator was never able to recover. In its second weekend, it fell all the way to fourth place, dropping 62.7 percent by making a measly $9.1 million. It spent the rest of September looking up at films like The House With a Clock in Its Walls and Night School, and by the time the calendar flipped to October, The Predator was toast. With the one-two combination of Venom ($80.2 million) and A Star is Born ($42.9 million) dominating the multiplex, Black’s film barely registered with general audiences. In only its fourth weekend in theaters, The Predator grossed $947,358 and came in tenth place on the charts. When Predator was in its fourth weekend during the summer of ’87, it made $4 million and ranked seventh.

As of this writing, The Predator has earned only $50 million domestically and is highly unlikely to match the U.S. total of the original film. That’s an unfortunate development for Black and his team, but there are plenty of instances in the past where an underwhelming domestic performer is salvaged by a strong showing overseas. Sadly for The Predator, its international numbers seal its fate as one of 2018’s most prominent box office disappointments.

Page 2: The Predator’s Worldwide Box Office

The Predator Tanked At The Global Box Office

The Predator‘s production budget reportedly comes in at $88 million, which, compared to other sci-fi/genre films, is peanuts. Going by the old rule of thumb, it needed to earn approximately $176 million worldwide in order to break even. To date, the movie has earned $123.2 million. If Fox decided to pull it completely from theaters today, that would be a loss of $52.8 million. This cements the franchise’s status as a weak box office draw. Predators grossed $127.2 million worldwide during its theatrical run, as a comparison.

It’s borderline impossible for The Predator to rebound from this at the box office. The film has already opened in a majority of markets around the world – with only two countries waiting for it. On Thursday, October 11, The Predator will open in Italy, followed by a France theatrical premiere on Wednesday, October 17. While every little bit will help, neither of those territories are large enough to make a significant impact on the bottom line. Notably, The Predator did not receive release in China, meaning it missed out on the world’s second-largest film market. The franchise has trouble getting by China’s strict censors, as Predators also suffered this fate back in 2010. Black’s film still has the home media release to earn some extra money, but that isn’t going to be enough to save it and warrant additional sequels.

Related: The Predator’s Most Brutal Reviews

The reasoning for The Predator’s poor numbers overseas stems from the fact, as stated above, the franchise has never been a huge draw. Despite Fox’s numerous attempts to breathe new life into the woebegone series, audiences don’t seem to care about any continuations. Additionally, marketing struggled to leave a lasting impression, never convincing general audiences this was a tentpole worth seeing in theaters. In some respects, The Predator looked to be disposable. Audiences have no problem turning up for an R-rated genre film in September (IT was shattering records at this time last year), but the movie has to be good. The Predator is one instance where there is no audience/critic divide. Both parties didn’t like the film, which sunk it.

Much like the Alien franchise, the future of The Predator is now in a state of flux. Any planned sequels to Black’s film probably won’t happen now, and with interest as low as it was, there’s little incentive for Fox to pursue another reboot/reinvention down the line. There’s also the matter of the studio’s impending merger with Disney, which might have an impact on their various R-rated franchises. Disney CEO Bob Iger is keen on making more Deadpool movies, but those generated a ton of revenue. Disney may decide to let The Predator go by the wayside.

It’s unfortunate The Predator failed to connect, as Black clearly had bigger ideas he wanted to play with. The film’s commercial failure serves as a painful reminder that not every movie is built to sustain a multi-installment franchise. Predator became a classic because of its simple premise (a group of soldiers are hunted in the jungle) and self-contained structure. There weren’t any dangling plot threads that needed to be resolved; it just told its story and definitively ended it. It’s tempting, especially in today’s day and age, to craft a cinematic universe out of anything, but filmmakers have to be smart about it.

More: The Predator Leaves Some Ridiculous Unanswered Questions



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2018-10-09 01:10:06 – Chris Agar

Mortal Engines Footage Description: First 25 Minutes Debuts At NYCC

Following The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies, Peter Jackson returns as a producer on Mortal Engines, and at the movie’s New York Comic Con panel, the first 25 minutes of footage debuted; we offer a brief breakdown of what’s included.

Adapted from Philip Reeve’s novel of the same name, Mortal Engines takes place in a futuristic world where cities are moving beasts that roam the world searching for fuel to keep moving. Meanwhile, smaller also mobile towns have become the prey of larger city-states like London. The film follows Hester Shaw (Hera Hilmar), a fugitive with a deadly grudge against London’s Thaddeus Valentine (Hugo Weaving). Hester runs across historian Tom Natsworthy (Robert Sheehan) as she attempts to defeat Valentine and protect smaller cities and towns from the insatiable hunger that is London.

Related: Mortal Engines Trailer #2 Debuts At NYCC

Ahead of the film’s release in December, Jackson, Mortal Engines director Christian Rivers and members of the cast appeared on a panel at NYCC. Prior to a Q&A with the cast and filmmakers during the Mortal Engines NYCC panel, Andy Serkis presented the first 25 minutes of the movie. Much of the opening footage focused on building out the world of Mortal Engines. The film kicks off with an opening monologue setting the stage for the post-apocalyptic world (what Jackson refers to as a “post-post-apocalyptic” world) following the 60-Minute War that destroyed society as we know it.

After the voiceover, viewers get to meet Hester, who’s on a cliff and spots the approaching predator city of London. Once she sees the oncoming, mobile city, Hester runs back to a grouping of smaller, mobile towns that break apart and start running from London. Hester is stuck on one town that can’t seem to get its engines started and winds up being the “prey” pursued by London. The town flees across the open land, which Jackson referred to as “the great hunting ground” (essentially, where Europe used to be). The chase sequence continues for much of the opening, as the smaller town is chased by London and attempts to lose the larger city-state amid some foothills. While the sequence is filled with tension, the town is eventually caught by London and “ingested.”

On board London, Tom meets Katherine Valentine (Leila George) at the London Museum, where he shows her some of the artifacts he’s collected to help with her research into the 60-Minute War. Tom shows Katherine a video of a pre-war city being destroyed using some kind of quantum technology. Then, Tom reveals he’s been collecting similarly dangerous technology, some of which has been stolen. Once London ingests the smaller town, Tom is tasked with going down to sort through it for valuable artifacts, and he’s accompanied by Katherine. There, they meet Thaddeus, but Hester is lurking in the crowd of people moving from the town into London. When she has a moment, she attempts to assassinate Thaddeus, but she’s stopped by Tom and has to flee.

The final sequence of the footage screened includes a foot chase through the ingested mining town as Hester runs from Tom and Thaddeus (though the latter is following more slowly due to the injury Hester inflicted). Hester flees from Tom through the town as it’s being destroyed by massive saws and metal jaws. Eventually, she reaches a platform that overlooks a tunnel out of London and she jumps. Tom catches her and Hester tells him to ask Thaddeus about her mother, revealing that Thaddeus murdered her mother. Then she forces Tom to drop her and when Tom does mention to Thaddeus what Hester said, Thaddeus pushes Tom down the tunnel and out of London.

Altogether, the footage shown at NYCC for Mortal Engines introduced an expansive world akin to that of The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit with sweeping, beautiful visuals. It remains to be seen if Mortal Engines turns out to be a massive blockbuster success on par with the trilogies for which Jackson is most well known. But, with Jackson on board as a producer and Rivers at the helm, it’s clear Mortal Engines will provide some stunning sequences for moviegoers – which they’ll get to see when the film hits theaters in December.

Next: The Biggest Changes Mortal Engines Makes to the Book



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2018-10-05 12:10:02 – Molly Freeman

Best Assassin’s Creed Odyssey Abilities to Unlock First

Unlocking abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is paramount not only with regards to surviving in the open world game but also being able to complete it without having to resort to constantly retreating. Just like most action-adventure and role-playing games, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey gives players several tools to aid them in their journey, of which the abilities section is what elevates the playing experience above what franchise fans are perhaps used to.

Assassin’s Creed Odyssey contains three sections of abilities – Hunter (ranged), Warrior (close-quarters combat), and Assassin (stealth) – and neither section should be ignored, for having a well-rounded skill tree provides for a more holistic experience. Every time players level up, they receive one new skill to redeem for any ability that’s currently available. And after progressing far enough into the story, they can even upgrade certain abilities, namely the ones that are assigned to their combat wheels.

Best Assassin Abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

Starting out, it’s always best to begin filling out the Assassin category seeing as this game is, well… an Assassin’s Creed game, and stealth is just as prominent in this title as previous installments. For this section, unlocking Shadow Assassin is key to starting off, seeing as it allows players to assassinate stronger targets. Upgrade it along the way as well, whenever possible. Then, unlocking Venomous Attacks and then later Poison Mastery helps in injuring the enemy, even with ranged attacks; it’s especially useful when fighting captains and tougher enemies who have high endurance. Next is Hero Strike, which uses the full power of the Spear of Leonidas to deal a powerful strike. Along these lines, Critical Assassination is also enormously helpful in assassinating captains and various other mini-bosses who would otherwise require multiple strikes to defeat. Unlocking Shadow of Nyx is certainly useful, but it’s not something that players would use often unless they are in a hectic situation and have nowhere to go.

Best Warrior Abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

From the get-go, most players would want to start out with Sparta Kick, an ability which general gamers will recognize from the movie 300. Beyond being cool, it actually comes in handy when attempting to create some distance between yourself and the enemy. After that, acquiring the Bull Rush ability will help in clearing out a horde of enemies that have lined up. Even though those two aforementioned abilities will help clear out enemies, players will come face-to-face with some people with shields. To defeat them (or, at least disarm them while fighting), players should unlock the Shield Breaker ability. Then, in order to protect themselves and increase their damage, it’s best to acquire the Weapons Master and Gear Master abilities next – and upgrade them whenever the opportunity arises. Increasing damage and armor is vital to surviving harrowing fights later on.

Best Hunter Abilities in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey

Continuing off Assassin’s Creed Origins, archery in Assassin’s Creed Odyssey is of utmost importance. Predator Shot should be selected first, seeing as it’s strong and allows players to guide the arrow themselves. It’s good at hitting hard to reach targets. Next up, Devastating Shot; a special ability that unleashes a powerful arrow, which can be even more powerful if fully charged up, to significantly damage stronger enemies. In fact, to completely master and utilize the hunter abilities to their fullest, it’s best to unlock the entire right column of that category: Archery Master (increases hunter damage), Overpower Bow Strike (a fully charged arrow that deals 1000% damage), and Ghost Arrows of Artemis (an arrow that be shot through shields, walls, etc.). The only other ability worth getting from the hunter category is Multi-Shot, which is useful in targeting four or more enemies at once. It helps with crowd control.

If players choose to follow this guide, they may unlock the aforementioned abilities at whatever point they feel like, but those are undoubtedly the best abilities that will aid players in their journey across Greece.



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2018-10-05 02:10:28 – Mansoor Mithaiwala

The Predator: Every Easter Egg & Movie Connection

Warning: SPOILERS for The Predator

The Predator may be injecting new life into the classic movie series and antagonist, but it’s definitely not ignoring all the movies that came before. Aside from homages and inside jokes linking Shane Black’s film to the original movie series, a few clues show the Predator timeline isn’t being reset at all.

Whether it’s Easter Eggs and subtle references that even devoted Predator fans would miss, or confirmation that the events of Alien vs Predator definitely happened in the movie’s universe, these details shouldn’t be missed. Not to mention the signature trademarks and winks to the audience that Shane Black could never resist.

RELATED: Does The Predator Have a Post-Credits Scene?

To make sure fans can catch every single one, we’re breaking down The Predator: Every Easter Egg & Movie Connection.

15. The Hanging Corpses

When the original Predator was released in theaters, nobody actually knew that the secret villain was an alien, let alone one of the finest hunters in the galaxy. So when Dutch and his unit stumbled across a horrifying sight – defeated men who had much of the skin and flesh removed from their bodies, and strung up in the jungle, nobody knew what to make of it in or outside of the film. It was revealed to be part of the Predator’s game of pride and intimidation, and it’s apparently not an isolated practice.

When McKenna and his squadmates realize that one of their own has gone missing in a similar Central American jungle, they find out they’re being hunted in the exact same way: with a fellow soldier flayed, and strung up in the canopy. This time, the Predator is there to taunt them, and make sure nobody misses the callback.

14. Predators Visited Earth in 1987 & 1997

When Casey Brackett is recruited by Project Stargazer to help understand the blending of alien and human DNA in the captured Predator, she has more than a few bombshells dropped directly on her (and bringing plenty of exposition for the audience along with it). She may be surprised to learn that intelligent alien life does exist… and visited Earth more than once, with visits in 1987 and 1997 called out specifically.

Those years are references to both Predator and its sequel Predator 2. One released in 1987, the other set a decade later. To double down on the confirmation of franchise lore for the fans who caught that detail, the surveillance photos Casey views are both taken from their respective movies.

13. The Predator Spears

Getting to see the masks of both Predators (and their shoulder-mounted cannon, too) in a trophy case is cool enough, but it’s the second case that Brackett observes which holds the real Holy Grail for fans of Alien vs Predator. The case includes the compact, extendable spear brought by the Predator in the sequel, but it also holds the spear made famous in AvP.

It was constructed by the Predator of the film, combining a staff with the removed tail of a Xenomorph. This weapon, in tandem with a Xenomorph head shield, were both gifted to AvP‘s heroine. How it wound up in Project Stargazer is a mystery, but a cool Easter Egg all the same.

Next Page: Callbacks To The Original Predator Films

12. Busey/Keyes Connection

When the first reports of Shane Black’s Predator film arrived, some believed it wouldn’t be a continuation of the original series, but a true reboot, wiping the slate clean and staring fresh. That obviously isn’t the case, as the new Predator is a sequel to the original films – a tradition embodied by the role of Sean Keyes, played by Jake Busey.

Thise names should ring a bell, since it was Gary Busey playing FBI Special Agent Keyes in Predator 2 (the government agent who Secretly knew the alien existed). Jake Busey is Gary’s son, and the same dynamic is at play in the film, with Sean obviously taking a scientific path towards the same alien target as his father.

11. They Really Shouldn’t Be Called “Predators”

For as long running and illustrious as the Predator films have been, the newest movie marks the first time that the masked alien creatures are referred to as “a Predator,” in the form of a formal nickname. The serious fans know that the true name for the Predators is the Yautja (“Ya-OOT-ja”), but the movie offers its own moniker. The fact that a killer who hunts for sport, and not survival actually isn’t a “predator” in the true sense of the word soon becomes a running joke, since it would make more sense to call them… well, Hunters.

That decision pays a bit more love to Alien vs Predator, since that’s exactly what the characters refer to the Predators as (and refer to the Xenomorphs as “serpents” or non-descriptor pronouns). In the actual movie canon, the fans and production also refer to the creatures as Hunters, ever since the first Predator/Jungle Hunter battled Arnold Schwarzenegger.

10. “You Are One Beautiful Motherf**ker”

Arnold Schwarzenegger is best know for his catchphrase informing enemies and allies that “he will be back,” but his one-liner in the original Predator is immortalized for a completely different reason. When the Predator first removes its bio-mask helmet to expose its true face, Arnold’s hero stares in disgust, informing his enemy that “you are one ugly motherf***er.” The line is also repeated by Danny Glover in Predator 2.

For a soldier and cop, respectively, the disgusting face of the Predator is a horror to look upon. But for an evolutionary biologist, the Predator is a scientific breakthrough. A point made clear when Casey gets up close and personal with the face of the Predator, and expresses her wonder by calling the alien “one beautiful motherf**ker.”

Next Page: References Predator Fans Definitely Missed

9. Your Second Question

When you’re dealing with writers Shane Black and Fred Dekker, you know that the references, homages, and tributes are going to start on the pages of the script itself. For instance, when Casey Brackett is being walked through the existence and capture of the Predators, and the scientific mystery they represent. Before she can voice objections, Traeger is one step ahead, guessing that her second question is going to be something along the lines of “what is she doing here?”

It’s a saying that will slip by most viewers, but for those who remember Arnold’s Dutch being brought into the story of the first Predator without much explanation, it’s an even more meta joke. Dutch first asks why the captured hostages were in enemy territory to begin with. His second question? Yes, also inquiring as to why he in particular was asked to be a part of the mission. A truly subtle touch.

8. “Get To The Choppers”

Even if action movie fans never got around to seeing the original Predator, they may still know Arnold’s infamous screaming, urging (ordering?) the woman who survived the Predator hunt to “RUN! GET TO THE CHOPPER!” The line has reached meme status by now, and Shane Black finds the way to pay what may be the most overt callback of the entire new movie.

After the Predator escapes from Project Stargazer and the Looneys are left without a fitting vehicle for escape, their rescue comes in the form of a pack of nearby motorcycles. Once again, the heroes have no choice but to “get to the choppers,” but with a completely different context.

7. Nebraska’s Bullet Necklace

When Nebraska explains what circumstances have landed him in psychiatric care, he claims that he shot his commanding officer. The twist only comes later when Nebraska shows Quinn the scar along the side of his head – the mark left behind by the bullet he fired at his own head (and missed). At the time of our set visit, Trevante Rhodes wouldn’t explain the significance of the necklace worn by Nebraska. But now that the film has been released, fans can put the pieces together themselves.

The necklace holds a single brass shell casing, crushed so that it can never be used in a live round again, and mounted around his neck. A heck of a way to remember his rock bottom.

Next Page: The Warriors Nod & Alien Tribute

6. “Home of The Warriors”

When the action moves from war-torn jungles to small town America, the name of Rory’s middle school is hard to miss. And many fans will (rightly) assume that the “Lawrence Gordon” for whom the school is named is a producer from behind the camera. A true legend on some incredible films… but that’s not the best part of this Easter Egg.

The other message printed on the school sign proclaims it to be the “Home of the Warriors.” And yes, it was Lawrence Gordon who first acquired the rights to produce what would ultimately become the cult hit The Warriors in 1979.

5. New Predator, Same Runtime

Not every Easter Egg needs to be groundbreaking, or even noticeable while watching the film. Sometimes, the best running tributes can’t even be seen on screen. For instance, the fact that Shane Black’s role in the first Predator may not be all that memorable aside from his gags… but he certainly learned exactly how long to make a Predator movie.

The official running time of The Predator is 1:47:00, the exact same as the first movie (and Predator 2). Who knew?

4. “East on Woodruff Road”

Just when the Looneys and McKenna are on the search for his son Rory, the boy comes through (albeit unintentionally). A bit of bullying triggers Rory’s helmet-mounted cannon to obliterate a no-candy burnout and the entire upper floor of his home, bringing more than just his father in pursuit. A report over the police scanner claims that Rory was fleeing along the city streets, and running out in front of a patrol car. From there, he was last seen heading “East on Woodruff Road.”

Thats almost definitely a reference to special effects and creature creating legend Tom Woodruff Jr., who aside from working with Black and Dekker on Monster Squad, was also in the Xenomorph suit for Alien vs Predator (as “Grid,” the Xeno who ended up with a net pattern of acidic burns across its head).

Next Page: Predator Links To Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

3. Who Taught You Math?

Fans of Shane Black may have been disappointed at a lack of any nods or winks to his previous movies, but there was one dropped during the film’s showdown between the military of Project Stargazer and the Looneys. Specifically, when Traeger tries to talk McKenna and his team into surrendering, since his own forces outnumber theirs 7 to 6. At which point a sniper shot takes out the soldier next to him, revealing the numbers are now perfectly even.

In response, McKenna loudly inquires as to “who taught him Math,” mocking him after his own fighters removed the advantage. That’s the exact same question Perry posed to Harry in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang after he placed a single bullet into his revolver to intimidate a suspect… and then spun it, clocked it, and shot him dead. In hindsight, the odds of that happening were actually higher than Harry assumed.

2. Predator Goes Back Into The Water

There aren’t many overt references to the action scenes of the previous Predator films, and the ones that are there may be broad enough to avoid calling them direct homages, or tributes (you can only fight a Predator so many ways). But one moment will stand out for fans of the original. When McKenna drops to safety from the crashing Predator ship, the alien pilot grounds it in a lake surrounded by trees.

The shot that follows reveals the Predator walking through the water towards McKenna – and is seriously evocative of the same scene from the first Predator. With Dutch realizing the Predator is still coming to kill him, seeing the Predator rising from the water, camouflage flickering, became one of the most iconic shots of the film. If the new Predator movie seeks to pay homage at any point, this is the closest fans are going to get.

1. The Wardrobe Secrets Most Will Miss

The Looneys enter the film so quickly, it may be tempting for audiences to take their characters as only skin-deep. But when visiting the set, we learned how much time certain members of the cast had put into their backstories and irregularities. Aside from Nebraska’s bullet, Coyle may be the best example, as was explained in our interview with The Predator’s Keegan-Michael Key:

I said I want a version of Travis Bickle’s jacket from Taxi Driver. That’s what I want Coyle to wear, and I want it to have a Great Santini feel to it, which is that it’s not his jacket. It’s his father’s jacket from the Vietnam War. And as you’ll see, half the jacket has vet material from Desert Shield, and half has vet material from Vietnam.

He also wears his father’s Army ring even though he wasn’t in the Army, he was in the Marine Corps. My favorite part is that he has his work shirt, he works at a cold storage plant, and she said, ‘Oh we’ll put your name tag under your dad’s name tag.’ So the costume’s kind of a living museum, a tapestry, pardon the pun, of him and his father’s relationship.

Those are the Easter Eggs and references that we’ve spotted in The Predator so far, but if you spotted ones we missed, be sure to leave them in the comments.

MORE: The Predator Ending & Cliffhanger Explained



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2018-09-16 02:09:50 – Andrew Dyce

The Predator Makes Alien vs. Predator Canon Again

With the simple addition of a single prop, The Predator officially acknowledges the events of franchise black sheep Alien vs. Predator. While opinions vary on 1990’s Predator 2, most fans will agree the cameo appearance of a Xenomorph skull on the Predator’s trophy wall was an inspired touch. In addition to hinting at a wider universe, it also set up a potential crossover that had sci-fi geeks salivating at the time – which was handy for Fox, who owned both properties.

Despite this, it took 14 years for Aliens vs. Predator to finally hit screens. Various scripts and concepts were developed and Sigourney Weaver has stated part of her desire to kill Ripley in Alien 3 was the fear she’d be roped into an Alien vs. Predator crossover – a concept she found “just awful.” It’s fair to say the resulting 2004 effort isn’t especially beloved among the fanbase; it has some fun action scenes and additions to the mythology, but bland characters and a toothless PG-13 rating neuter a lot of the excitement. In the time it took for the movie to appear various video games and comic books had already explored the concept – often with superior results. The movie later spawned a sequel, subtitled Requiem, but the less said about that, the better.

Related: The Predator: Every Easter Egg & Movie Connection

When Shane Black’s new sequel The Predator was announced there was confusion about its relationship to past entries. Some actors involved with the project stated it had no real ties to the other movies, while others claimed it acknowledged all of them – including the AVP movies. Reports of Arnold Schwarzenegger rejecting a cameo and Jake Busey signing on to play Sean Keyes (the son of Predator 2’s Peter Keyes) confirmed it would build on established storylines. The Predator also went back for three weeks of reshoots in early 2018, which would add further callbacks to past adventures.

Which Predator Movies Are Canon?

While some modern franchises prefer to paste over unloved instalments – Halloween 2018 comes to mind – The Predator ultimately has a healthy relationship to the franchise’s past. When Olivia Munn’s scientist character, Casey Bracket, is first being briefed she’s told of past Predator encounters from 1987 and 1997, and she’s shown pictures from both Predator and Predator 2 as evidence. There are no references to 2010’s Predators, but considering the events of that entry play out in a game preserve in space during an undisclosed time frame, this is understandable. Black himself has addressed Predators, stating the movie is canon but its events likely haven’t happened yet.

Alien vs. Predator Is Still Canon

Bracket is later shown a display of various Predator bio-masks, and also Lex Wood’s (Sanaa Lathan) Alien tail spear from Alien vs. Predator. In the movie, that particular weapon is crafted for Lex by a friendly Predator, and she uses it in the finale to skewer an Alien Queen. While the events of AVP aren’t directly referenced in The Predator, the inclusion of this spear feels like a nod to the fanbase that yes, the events of the movie are officially canon.

The status of AVP in the canon has been in doubt since Prometheus, which presented an alternate backstory for the founder of Weyland Industries, AVP had Charles Bishop Weyland (Lance Henriksen) as the founder but Prometheus/Alien: Covenant had Sir Peter Weyland (Guy Pearce) instead. Screenwriter Damon Lindelof even pointed out the inconsistency to Ridley Scott during development, only to be told in no uncertain terms that Scott didn’t care about tying into AVP.

There don’t seem to be any overt nods to Alien vs. Predator: Requiem, though given that all the evidence of a Predator/Xenomorph attack in that sequel was nuked out of existence in the finale, this is somewhat understandable. The ending of The Predator sets up a potential war between mankind and the Predators, so it’s possible producers wanted to subtly open the door to reintroducing Xenomorphs back in the series.

The comics and video games have shown there’s plenty of potential in the Alien vs. Predator concept, so that’s one angle a follow-up could potentially take. The Alien franchise itself is currently in a holding pattern following the lukewarm box-office of Alien: Covenant, and while Scott has outlined his version for the epic finale of David 8’s (Michael Fassbender) journey, a soft reboot is more likely at this point. Maybe that could lead to another – and hopefully much better – crossover between the two beloved franchises in the future.

Next: The Predator Reshoots Explained



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2018-09-15 02:09:21 – Padraig Cotter

The Predator’s Ending Explained: [SPOILER], Sequel Setup & What Was Changed

WARNING: Major spoilers for The Predator ahead.

After The Predator‘s ending, it looks like the hunter is about to become the hunted. For over three decades, the deadly space game hunters (known as Yautja in expanded materials) have meanced some of Earth’s most powerful warriors, hunting them in jungles, cities and purpose-built pyramids, as well as transporting them to space game preserves. Now, though, we’re going to bring the fight to them thanks to the introduction of the Predator Killer.

The Predator ostensibly follows a group of mentally-unstable, discharged soldiers – self-dubbed the Looneys – who cross paths with a classic Predator and later the hybrid Ultimate Predator hunting him. Over the course of the film, Quinn McKenna (Boyd Holbrook) and his new comrades learn that the Predators are planning to take our heating planet for themselves, with the classic versions coming to Earth to provide us a way to fight back. By working together – and with no small amount of help from Quinn’s autistic son, Rory (Jacob Tremblay) – the Loonies are able to defeat the Ultimate Predator, although only Quinn, Rory and scientist Casey (Olivia Munn) survive.

Related: All 6 Predator Movies Ranked (Including The Predator)

Throughout The Predator, the enduring mystery is what exactly the “gift for humanity” that the Predator has bought to Earth is. It’s a static MacGuffin, something all parties – Loonies, Predator, the government and Ultimate Predator – are looking for, even if they don’t know quite what it is. It’s teased when Quinn saves Rory from Traeger (Sterling K. Brown) on the ship, and is finally revealed in the final scene. But first, what exactly is going on with the warring Predators?

  • This Page: The Predator Motives And Predator Killer Armor Explained
  • Page 2: The Predator Turns The Franchise Into An Alien War
  • Page 3: The Predator Ending Before The Reshoots

The Predator (Finally) Reveals What The Predators Really Want With Humans

At first, it looked like The Predator‘s major addition to the mythology was going to be the idea of hybridization. The “classic” Predator was enhanced by human DNA, while the Ultimate Predator was so upgraded it stood eleven feet tall and didn’t need a mask to temper the species’ affronting heat-vision. Early versions of the film even had a sequence where various other hybrids would attack the heroes, but it was cut as part of the movie-altering reshoots.

However, all of the hybridization is just an entry point into what’s really going on. In a major retcon, it’s revealed that the Predators aren’t just sport hunters as Casey alleges, but are attempting to upgrade themselves with every hunt. Pulling the spine of a felled prey isn’t about the skulls (although trophies are part of the culture) but to get DNA via the spinal fluid to help better themselves; successfully hunting a species gives the Predator the abilities of that species. It appears that things have accelerated in recent years, with artificial genetic selection leading to the lab-created Ultimate Predator (as seen by Rory in the mask).

That’s not the only thing accelerating. As climate change heats up Earth and threatens to wipe out humanity, the Predators are hunting more often in a bid to get as much of our survivalist DNA as possible before we go extinct, with the long-term plan being to claim the warmer planet for themselves. Essentially, the hunting is all part of a bigger alien invasion plot. Not all Predators agree with this, though, leading to the multiple factions seen in the film, and the central MacGuffin: the Predator Killer.

Related: Predators is the Only Worthy Predator Successor

The Predator Killer Armor: What Is It And What Can It Do?

In The Predator‘s final scene, Quinn and Rory are taken to a secret base where they’re going to help discover more truths about the invaders. They’re shown the gift from the Predator ship, which ejected before the Ultimate Predator’s self-destruct. It opens up, revealing what Rory translates as “the Predator Killer”. After a slow build-up, it’s revealed to be a gauntlet similar to those seem worn by the Predators. However, unlike the one that the McKenna’s co-opted, this one isn’t designed for the aliens but for humans. When attached – which this one does after being opened – it forms a human-sized Predator armor in a manner akin to Iron Man’s nanotech armor from Avengers: Infinity War.

This armor is a sleek silver with piercing red eyes, and a considerably more svelte build to the standard Predator. In terms of weapons and abilities, we see that the Predator Killer has the classic invisibility and, from the multiple tracking dots, several plasma canons. It’s presumably kitted out with more than that, and there’s definitely room in the pod for some other weapons like the ever-useful staff from Predator 2. Even as is, though, the armaments make it one of the most powerful suits seen yet in the movies, meaning that humans have a serious advantage over any returning hunters.

Throughout the movie, we’ve seen several humans use Predator tech. Quinn wears the gauntlet and evades capture using invisibility; Rory controls the ship remotely, views a hologram creation of the Ultimate Predator, wears the mask (with the help of tape), and later gets hands-on with the Ultimate Predator’s craft; Traeger uses a shoulder canon in the finale (before accidentally blowing his head off); Casey befriends a Hell-Hound and uses invisibility to sneak up on the Ultimate Predator. Clearly, while this is science beyond our current developments, we’re more than capable of using it. What the Predator Killer does is give something purpose-built. And that’s going to be very important…

Page 2: The Predator Turns The Franchise Into An Alien War

The Predator Killer Is The First Weapon In The Human/Predator War

The Predators want Earth – but humanity isn’t too keen on the idea. The Predator‘s biggest change wasn’t to the motivations of the Predators per se, but more the implication for the future of the franchise. For the longest time, this has been a mash-up of 1980s action films and horror monster with a sci-fi twist, but now it looks like the series is stepping out to being an alien invasion revenge thriller. Think Starship Troopers with even uglier motherf*ckers (and less satire).

Related: The Predator: Every Easter Egg & Movie Connection

The Predator Killer is humanity’s first weapon built to work against the Predators, providing Quinn – who claims it at the end – a fighting chance without the need for mud or makeshift traps. But this lone armor needn’t be the be-all-and-end-all. Like a figurative monolith, the technology on display could usher in a new period of technological development. In all previous Predator films, the alien has been killed and almost all trace of it destroyed (either by emergency self-destruct or other over-watching Predators). This time, bodies and ships remain before we even get the Predator Killer, providing humanity with its first proper look at how they work. The future situation in a sequel to The Predator could be similar to Terminator 2: Judgement Day where the surviving T-800 skeleton was used to actually create Skynet, or Alien where the nefarious Weyland-Yutani wanted the Xenomorph to derive new weapons from.

Space travel, new weapons, perhaps even hybridization. It’s all to come in a sequel…

What The Predator Ending Means For A Sequel

The Predator sequel is being set up to be about the war, but there’s several ways to take it. The obvious suggestion is that, using the newly-developed tech, Quinn and co. will head into space and take the fight to the Predators. This could see us visit the Predator homeworld properly after a brief tease in Alien vs. Predator: Requiem. The cheaper flipside is it becomes a defense game, with humanity getting ready for the increasing frequent Predator attacks.

Of course, neither deal with the big problem that The Predator raises: human extinction. If climate change really is that close to wiping out the dominant species on Earth, then that’s a bigger concern than a few space aliens coming for a closing down DNA sale. It’s possible the leaps forward caused by the Predator Killer will allow us to find a way to avert catastrophe, or the development of interstellar space travel will render our home planet redundant. This development could even lead to the colonizing seen in the original Alien films (which, per the Alien vs. Predator spear Easter egg, is canon).

Related: How AvP Saved Predator (But Possibly Killed Alien)

One other aspect a sequel to The Predator really should look at is the possibility of a team-up of various heroes. Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger in Predator), Harrigan (Danny Glover in Predator 2), Lex (Sanaa Lathan in Alien vs. Predator), Royce and Isabelle (Adrien Brody and Alice Braga respectively in Predators) all survived their Predator run-in, and would be perfect to form a team of sci-fi Expendables. This has already been flirted with – Arnie has been close to returning four times (a couple of which we’ll look at later), while Laurence Fishburne’s Predators role was conceived as being for Glover – and now we’re talking about taking on the aliens, the time seems right.

This is, of course, all dependent on box office. At the time of writing, The Predator is currently tracking to open around $30 million; enough to see it beat The Nun to the top spot but less than AVPR. Could this be another Independence Day: Resurgence, where a new entry in a Fox franchise served as a backdoor reboot into a “humans taking the fight to the aliens” story until terrible box office stopped it dead? Hopefully not!

Page 3: The Predator Ending Before The Reshoots

The Predator Ending Before Reshoots

As has been widely reported and openly discussed by the filmmakers, The Predator underwent substantial reshoots early this year, with particular attention paid to the third act. The nature and motivation of these changes is still up for debate: director Shane Black has repeatedly cited it was primarily to move the sequences from day to night, but the choppiness of the editing in the finished movie and overall confused flow suggest something more fundamental.

Indeed, we know that two whole sequences from the later part of the film were cut: the Looneys fighting with good guy Predators and the team getting attacked by hybrid Predators when approaching the ship. No trace of these scenes or related subplots is in the finished film, with the Ultimate Predator’s hunt in woods looking to be the replacement; it changed the deaths of several major characters. However, based on script leaks, the final showdown with the Ultimate Predator played out about the same, with survivors Quinn, Casey and Rory together taking the beast down.

Read More: The Predator Reshoots Explained: Every Cut And Change Fox Made To Shane Black’s Movie

Early leaks suggested that the victory would beeline directly into an Arnold Schwarzenegger cameo where he recruited Quinn for a Predator fighting cause, although the Governator turned down such a small part. The second trailer then showed the survivors looking up at the sky and Quinn saying “come and get us, motherf*cker“, an Arnie free-adaptation of that idea. It’s up in the air whether the Predator Killer was part of principal production and came after that beat or the reshoots replaced it, although the disconnected nature of the scene and shaky CGI suggest the latter.

Whatever the case, considering what we got, the planned Arnie appearance and a similar cut scene from Predators, it’s clear that Fox’s grand plan with the series has always been about taking the fight to the Yautja.

The Predator Killer In Other Media

While this is the first time a human Predator armor has appeared in the movies (although Lex in Alien vs. Predator was gifted a makeshift shield and spear from Xenomorph body parts), the idea isn’t totally new to Predator canon. Following the original movie in 1987 and throughout the 1990s, the Predator was a major license for Dark Horse Comics, who greatly deepened the mythology (this was where Alien vs. Predator first emerged) including some human companions to the aliens.

Most prominent is Machiko Noguchi, the human focus of the original AvP comic. Similar to Lex, she survived being in the middle of the Xenomorph/Yutja conflict and was branded as a result. However, unlike Lex her story continued, with Machiko joining a Predator clan and working with then on several hunts (until an attack on humans had her question her identity). During this time, she worse a human-sized Predator mask and armor. A little weirder, there’s also Caryn Delacroix (again part of the AvP series), who was kidnapped to be the trophy wife of a Predator and later took up a mantle herself. The term “Killer” was also used to describe a clan of Predators who sought only to kill their prey, not hunt.

Both of these human characters are shown working with the Predators and eventually turning on their violent compatriots. This is obviously very different to where the movies are heading, but shows that the human Predators teased at the end of The Predator really have been a long-time coming.

Next: Read Our Review Of The Predator



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2018-09-14 10:09:05 – Alex Leadbeater

The Predator Reshoots Explained: Every Cut And Change Fox Made To Shane Black’s Movie

WARNING: Major spoilers for The Predator throughout.

The Predator‘s reshoots completely changed the movie, with Fox totally rewriting Shane Black’s original plan for the film. Characters were removed entirely, others had their personalities and deaths completely altered, multiple Predator variants and hybrids were cut, and a whole new ending was introduced. Here, we’re going to try and break down how such a mess came to be.

Even before reshoots, The Predator‘s journey to the screen was already a strange one; its release date slowly shuffled around from an early 2018 release to its current September 2018 date and a trailer not releasing until May. There were rumblings that something wasn’t right – a leaked plot synopsis caused a lot of fan backlash – and then around when the film had originally been set to release, it was reported there would be reshoots over a two-and-a-half week stretch from March 12th to March 29th. The cast and crew were rather open about this, stating that it involved changes to the third act, but then, in July, there was a second, two-day bout of reshoots to further tighten up the film.

Related: All 6 Predator Movies Ranked (Including The Predator)

Reshoots aren’t an inherently bad thing – they come from a film not being complete in the edit – and it must be said that The Predator‘s weren’t any longer than the likes of Thor: Ragnarok. However, they came accompanied by rumors the studio and director had clashed over the story and tone, withmajor aspects of the film had been removed entirely. It slowly emerged that this wasn’t a case of fixing up the movie, but about retroactively changing it.

Again, this approach needn’t be a death sentence – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story had third-act changing reshoots and is regarded by many as the peak of Disney Star Wars – but with The Predator, it most certainly was. The film is hastily edited and frenetically paced in a bid to hide the illogicies created by the new footage, but all that does is bury any hope of a worthy sequel. The resulting film is plainly a muddle, although the impact of the behind-the-scenes meddling is perhaps not as utterly damaging as with Fantastic Four or Justice League, which in turn means there are no obvious reshoot hallmarks akin to Henry Cavill’s mustache.

However, using early plot leaks, reports on what was cut and changed, and footage from the trailers not in the film, we can get a good idea of what Shane Black’s The Predator was going to be – and what Fox turned it into.

  • This Page: All The Other Creatures Cut From The Predator
  • Page 2: How Reshoots Changed The Predator’s Characters (And Mental Illness Parallels)
  • Page 3: How The Predator’s Third Act & Ending Changed In Reshoots
  • Page 4: Were The Predator’s Reshoots Worth It?

A Whole Sequence With Good Guy Predators Was Cut

The earliest set photos for The Predator showed the cast of loonies on an APC tank, alongside a pair of classic, good guy Predators in camo armor. What’s so striking about this now is that this sequence absolutely does not fit into the movie playing in theaters. Some footage did appear in the first two trailers, but even that doesn’t really line up with what we’ve got.

Related: The Problem With The Predator’s Trailers

A Reddit post from 2017, seemingly based on the leaked script, may provide some clarification. A lot of the included plot details are accurate to the finished movie from a time before such details were public knowledge, making it verifiable and the deviations most likely a product of subsequent changes. It is from the script, so not everything will have been shot, but it gives a sense of the ideas Black and co-screenwriter Fred Dekker were playing with. In reference to these scenes, it says that there are two defector Predators being held in Area 51 who team up with the loonies in a bid to stop the Ultimate Predator. The leak places the scene at the start of the third act, after the Predators’ true extinction plot but before the loonies head to the Predator ship (known as “the Ark”).

These set photos got a mixed fan reaction and, given no allusion to any other good Predators on Earth remain, was evidently something the studio or director wanted out of The Predator entirely. Speaking to Yahoo, Black talked about how it was simple one antagonistic thread too many: in the finished version, the single classic Predator is killed the moment the Ultimate Predator makes its appearance, which may be an attempt to keep the focus on one alien antagonist. Whatever the motivation, this reveals a lot about the connective tissue of the reshoots: there’s an entire sequence missing, meaning a lot of surrounding was footage cut and replaced.

Also of note, these photos also show what appears to be Keegan Michael-Key in scarred makeup, suggesting that he was originally going to be killed in this scene, much earlier than in the finished film.

Another Sequence With Predator Hybrids Was Also Cut

As released, The Predator features three different alien creatures: the renegade Predator (aka the original creature), the Ultimate Predator, and his Hell-Hounds. Earlier versions of the story, however, had many, many more.

Related: The Predator Is In The Original Canon – Here’s How

From that previous script leak, there was apparently going to be a sequence when the characters closed in on The Ark where the Upgrade version would unleash a cacophony of various Predator hybrids: previous attempts at evolution that went wrong, including Predators with two, three and four limbs, tentacles and other twists on the mandibled monster. They were eventually defeated by the heroes taking advantage of fortuitous self-destruct collars.

Our set visit teased and other reports backed up these hybrids being in one earlier cut of the film (meaning they made it past the script phase), but as with the hero Predators, any trace of them is removed in the finished movie. From the leak, it would seem this sequence came after the APC chase, ending with the characters flying away in the Predator ship (instead of it being blown up). This was then followed by the fight on and subsequent crash of the Ultimate Predator’s craft, suggesting that this was replaced by the more conventional Ultimate Predator hunt in the woods.

Connections To Earlier Predator Films Were Added

One thing that The Predator does in spades are references to previous movies. The events of 1987 (Predator) and 1997 (Predator 2) are mentioned, Olivia Munn’s Casey Bracket is shown still footage from both original movies, the spears from both Predator 2 and Alien vs. Predator appear, and Jake Busey plays the son of Predator 2‘s Keyes (Black has said Predators is set afterwards, excusing its absence). While some of these were evidently part of the film from the start – Busey was cast in March 2017 – reports suggest at least some were late changes.

Related: How AvP Saved Predator (But Possibly Killed Alien)

According to reports in July 2018, the AvP spear and archive footage were both added by the reshoots to provide some obvious fan bait to the Predator history lesson. It’s also possible that some of the other tongue-in-cheek gags are reshoots: the “get to the choppers” line in the earlier leaks was in reference to an actual helicopter, while the bikes definitely look like CGI additions.

Page 2: How Reshoots Changed The Predator’s Characters (And Mental Illness Parallels)

Most Character’s Personalities Changed (Possibly To Avoid Mental Illness Parallels)

Shane Black movies are typically marked out for their distinct characters, and The Predator is no different – for the most part. Some relationships and arcs feel undercooked, and going back through what was reported when actors were cast, you can see aspects that were either cut, reordered or reshot.

When Trevante Rhodes was cast as Nebraska, he was said to be the best friend of Boyd Holbrook’s McKenna, yet in the released film, he’s the de facto leading of The Looneys, only meeting Quinn after his psyche evaluation. This could be misreporting – the pair do form a strong friendship – but a reunion arc would also fit what’s presented. Further, the first trailer seemed to suggest Nebraska was originally on McKenna’s mission that opens the film.

There’s more. Olivia Munn’s Casey was allegedly a science teacher, providing a further essential piece of background to her DNA expertise and how the government would know of her (rather than a childhood letter). Jacob Tremblay’s Rory was, for the longest time, said to use his autism to learn the Predator language (and allegedly control the Ultimate Predator’s ship). In the movie he does learn how to communicate with Predators, but it’s entirely through their technology; given the Ultimate Predator later uses a translator to speak to the humans, it would make sense as a parallel. Finally, Augusto Aguilera’s casting report gave a more specific backstory for Nettles, with a helicopter crash leaving him with a brain injury (explaining his personality and how he can fly a chopper).

Read More: The New Predator Movie’s Cast & Character Guide

It’s also possible that the relationship between Thomas Jane’s Baxley and Keegan Michael-Key’s Coyle was repurposed. From our set visit, we know the flip reveal that the pair served together as marines was part of the original plan, but the presentation of it is oddly weighted: Jane’s Tourettes outbursts cease, while as already said Key was likely going to die during the APC sequence, which indicates an attempt to give two abrasive figures a softer side.

What’s striking is that most of these adjustments have the effect of downplaying the film’s exploration of mental illness. Indeed, for all the talk of Aspergers, Tremblay rarely displays any autistic hallmarks, and any attempts to draw parallels between him, The Looneys and the Predator are incredibly fleeting. Given the minefield of making any such parallels, this is hardly surprising.

Edward James Olmos’ Was Cut From The Predator Entirely

In March 2017, The Predator‘s already stacked cast gained another sci-fi alum: Edward James Olmos. The star of Battlestar Galactica and Blade Runner, Olmos was reported to be playing the boss of Sterling K. Brown’s Traeger, with it since confirmed by Black he was linked to the two renegade Predators in Area 51.

However, in August 2018, just a month before release, Olmos revealed that his role had been cut from The Predator entirely. The stated reason was runtime: “It was too long so my character, they had to take me out. They were like half an hour, 3/4 of an hour too long.” That length concern can definitely be felt in the film, which comes in at a neat 1 hour 48 minutes but is shaved within an inch of its life. In regards to the reshoots, this left a minor narrative hole in the command of the human villains, which per Black in the interview with Yahoo was shouldered more by Brown (indicating connective pick-ups).

Olivia Munn’s Introduction Was Cut (But For A Different Reason)

Not exactly a reshoot, but still a change is Olivia Munn’s introduction. This scene at the dog park would have seen her hit on by a stranger and rebuffing his advances before being approached by the military. However, the actor playing the pervert stranger was Steven Wilder Striegel, a convicted sex offender. Striegel was cast in the film off the back of his friendship with Black, who neglected to tell Munn or any of the crew his past. When Munn found out in August 2018, she immediately told the rest of the cast and Fox, who cut the scene. This controversy has exploded, with Munn’s co-stars initially refusing to do press with her and not commenting on the scandal in general, but they’ve since all backed her and Black has apologized for including Striegel.

Read More: Where Olivia Munn’s Cut Predator Scene Would’ve Been

The cut scene does leave a gap in the movie. As it stands, Casey is thrown straight into the narrative without any introduction, something that this encounter would have evidently have provided. Of course, removing it was undoubtably the right decision (and would have likely been reshot were it not so late in the day).

Page 3: How The Predator’s Third Act & Ending Changed

The Predator’s Third Act Was Changed (A Lot)

Although as has already been established the changes to The Predator are many, those involved haven’t shied away from discussing them, albeit in a manner to play it down. In multiple interviews, Shane Black confirmed that vast portions of the third act were being reshot, clarifying it was mainly to switch the action from day to night. As seen in the previous set photos and reaffirmed by the cast, a lot of the film’s action was going to take place in the cold light of day, something that doesn’t do creatures designed to be seen invisible and in shadows any favors. This meant most of the scenes were changed and, in an unexpected story impact, the majority of the film seems to take place over one night (this confusion can be seen when Traeger calls back to Rory wearing the Predator’s mask on Halloween night, despite it still being October 31).

However, from those set photos we know that a lot of elements were also removed, meaning there was a greater restructuring was going on. Two sequences – the good guy Predators and Predator hybrids – were dropped entirely, and there’s evidence that the Ultimate Predator’s hunt was introduced as or graduated to become their replacement: character deaths happened at different points, it’s clearly on one repurposed set, the CGI is weaker, it’s announced suddenly and explicitly, then beelines into a new, different sequence (the Ultimate Predator’s ship) without any bearing on the wider plot.

This streamlines the narrative most definitely (again, it provides a single antagonist) and connects the Ark sequence to the Ultimate Predator’s ship without any need for travel. But, knowing what was there before, it means a lot of movie was actually changed (anything from the football field fight will have likely been adjusted). For evidence, there’s a behind-the-scenes shot of Olivia Munn on the Ark interior set, somewhere Casey never appears on, pointing towards cuts around the hybrid point.

It also seems likely there were changes made to the final battle too. Several beats reported via story leaks – such as the forcefield kills – making it somewhat consistent. However, rumors also suggested Rory was originally going to pilot the Ultimate Predator’s ship (part of his ability to communicate with the aliens) and unsubstatiated rumblings even had him killing the creature. There’s also evidently some redits in the sequence considering how in the finished cut Casey is somehow able to travel miles from takeoff to landing in a matter of minutes. That said, there’s little information on what any tweaks might have been.

The Predator’s Many Character Deaths Changed Too

Those third act and character changes come together in how the various heroes are killed. It was reported in July that the reshoots changed many of the key character deaths, and that would seem evident from how swiftly all but three of The Looneys are offed in the space of a couple of minutes.

Related: The Predator Is The First Movie To Actually Call The Monster “The Predator”

As established, it’s likely all of this set piece was from reshoots, so this isn’t too surprising, although some are particularly obvious. Keegan Michael-Key’s death was, from set photos, earlier, which means both his and Thomas Jane’s showdown was never intended (again, their relationship also seems to be changed). Sterling K. Brown’s Traeger’s sudden shoulder canon acquisition and sudden fatal mishandling is likewise so out of the blue it can’t be ignored.

It would seem that the team’s was originally picked off more gradually across the second and third acts until only McKenna, Rory, Casey, Nebraska and Nettles were alive for the final sequence on the ship and the marshland. The changes made mean there’s more time getting to know the various characters, but then means the deaths have to come at a much quicker pace.

What About Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Cameo?

One thing that gets brought up with every new Predator movie is the question of if Arnold Schwarzenegger will return. The original movie was his star vehicle, and he’s been approached to return for every movie since. For The Predator, he turned down what was essentially a cameo, saying he’d only return if he had a full role.

The script leak possibly reveals what that cameo was: after defeating the Ultimate Predator, Quinn, Casey and Rory were to approach a helicopter piloted by Dutch, who recruits them for an upcoming war with the Predators and takes them off for further battle. This ending is somewhat similar to the proposed cameo for Predators – at the end, after Adrian Brody’s defeated the Super Predator, a Predator ship would have landed and collection of aliens come out, led by Dutch in Predator armor, likewise teasing further adventures. That makes this leak both believable – it’s clearly a direction Fox wants to take the franchise in – and suspect by how similar it is.

Read More: Arnold Schwarzenegger Almost Returned To Predator 4 Times

Whether this is indeed what Fox and Black had in mind, no scene will have been shot as Schwarzenegger turned it down. This leaves the movie without a know original final stinger, and the questions turn to the Predator Killer.

The Predator Killer Was Surely A Reshoot

While The Predator always sounds to have been a race to find something to help humanity fight against the invading aliens, it may not have always been the Predator Killer. That human armor doesn’t appear to have been in any of the leaked scripts or previous versions of the film, and even though standard blockbuster secrecy means there’s been little discussion of the ending by those involved, that entire sequence and tease reeks of being a reshoot.

Chiefly, there’s a shot from the second trailer where Quinn, kneeling alongside Rory and Casey, looks up at the sky and says “Come get us, motherf*cker”. Given the location and characters, this has to be after the Ultimate Predator’s death, making this the originally planned ending; essentially the Arnie cameo minus Arnie.

In contrast, the Predator Killer is a disconnected addendum to the story with no real bearing on the events that only features two of the main cast in totally different clothes to earlier, while the CGI of the Predator Killer itself is barely convincing. Above all, it’s an incredibly Marvel move: the gauntlet itself operates just like Tony Stark’s nanotech armor from Avengers: Infinity War, and the sequel tease is just too overt to not be studio notes. We’ll hopefully get some confirmation of this once the cast begin discussing spoilers.

Page 4: Were The Predator’s Reshoots Worth It?

Other Scenes That Were Likely Cut From The Predator

From trailers and general discussions, there’s a collection of scenes that were cut outright, rather than being reshot or adjusted. This includes McKenna being captured in Mexico (with Nebraska), Rory smashing the Predator device into his building blocks (although the connection to the original Predator ship seems to be tricksy trailer editing), as well as a lot of vehicle changing by The Looneys on their travels and shots of Nettles flying the helicopter.

Perhaps most interesting from the leaks is the changing geography. The Area 51 sequence would have obviously taken the characters from Georgia to Nevada, and it’s been rumored the Ultimate Predator’s ship was meant to be in Florida, with the final confrontation taking place in the Everglades. In the finished film, it appears close to the McKenna’s hometown, with the swamp for the final battle an extension of the forest. This, again, points towards a lot of connective elements removed, not least a longer time period being covered.

What Else In The Predator Could Be A Reshoot?

Along with everything discussed, there are several incongruous parts of The Predator that feel like they could be reshoots, or at least altered from what was originally shot. There isn’t any strong evidence here, but using everything we’ve uncovered there must have been some story alterations.

One weird recurring aspect is the lobotomized Hell-Hound, which pops up periodically to push the narrative forward before Olivia Munn shoos or locks it away. The isolated nature of these scenes – and the fact it’s always Munn with the creature – make it seem likely a reshoot of sorts, possibly an attempt to add some sci-fi levity. That said, it may also be a CGI budgetary consideration or a chopping down of an original Black idea.

On a bigger scale, the sequence at the barn also strikes as weird. Choppy editing and confused capturing of The Looneys aside, it exists to mainly move what we believe to be reshot character arcs into place and bridge the gap left by the cutting of the Area 51 and good Predator fight.

Did The Predator Reshoots Ruin The Movie?

And so, as with any discussion of seismic reshoots, the question as always comes down to whether they were worth it? This is always hard to quantify as any changes are undoubtedly done by a studio in an attempt to increase a movie’s audience appeal and commercial viability, meaning at the very least they thought what they had wouldn’t hit right and wanted to improve it. It’s a question of whether Fox attempted to save a bad movie or The Predator just too risque for the studio and they gutted it.

Related: Predators Is The Only Worth Predator Sequel

Most of what does work in the film – the uninterrupted banter between The Looneys, the creative use of Predator tech, the sometimes shocking R-rated violence – evidently comes from Black’s original ideas, but so too did he bring the ill-fitting idea of hybridization and an attempt to explore mental illness through B-movie tropes. His decision to shoot many sequences in light is also tough, but that needn’t mean the APC or hybrid attack would have flopped – especially as most of the negative reactions to those images and the leaked script come from disgruntled fans who an emotional involvement that skews measuring of quality.

What’s clear is that the reshoots led to a lot of the surface level problems with the theatrical version of The Predator. The confusing shot-to-shot editing, the breakneck narrative flow, and general lack of coherence all stem from the retooling of the movie after it was near completion. Whatever Black had before, it would surely have been a more ordered piece of filmmaking regardless of its handling of Predator mythology or mental illness.

This is something similar to Justice League, with what was primed to be another Snyder DCEU film turned into a tonal battle between his and Joss Whedon’s styles. While we don’t know if the much-disucssed Snyder assembly cut was actually any good, the overall auteur vision surely means it would have been more acceptable than the Frankenstein released by Warner Bros. The clash in The Predator is only from one voice and the studio, so it’s less jarring than that example, but the point stands: the film would surely have been a more complete experience if it had been left untouched.

As it stands, The Predator is another movie undone by reshoots, where the cuts and additions are so large scale and damaging on an artistic level there’s no way the earlier version can’t have been more interesting. When discussing the changes, Black alleged there could be scope for an alternate cut of the film on home video (via AvPGalaxy), although did acknowledge the scale of the changes would mean the effects would likely be unfinished. Nevertheless, given the state the theatrical version is in, perhaps we should ask Fox to #ReleaseTheBlackCut.

Next: Read Our Review Of The Predator



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2018-09-14 07:09:41 – Alex Leadbeater

The Predator: Ultimate Predator Origins, Hybrid DNA & Abilities Explained

Warning: SPOILERS for The Predator ahead

The Predator continues the evolution of the franchise’s titular monsters with a new version, dubbed the Ultimate Predator, which stands at a terrifying 11 feet tall and weighs a whopping 700 pounds. In this movie, we learn that the Predators’ practice of picking out the most worthy warriors from each species has an ulterior motive, as the species grows stronger and more lethal by combining their DNA with that of the strongest members of other alien races – humans included. The Predators’ habit of taking a “trophy” from their victims (i.e. the head and spine) is actually for the purpose of obtaining DNA from the spinal column.

This also serves as an explanation for why the Predators have been coming to Earth with greater frequency. It’s revealed that, since humanity is expected to die out within a couple of generations due to climate change, the Predators have been harvesting as much strong human DNA as possible before out species is gone forever. Once all the humans have died out, the Predators plan to move in and claim Earth for their own.

Related: All 6 Predator Movies Ranked (Including The Predator)

There are two Predators featured in The Predator: a rogue Predator who comes to Earth in order to bring humanity a weapon that might help us survive; and the Ultimate Predator, who is hunting the rogue Predator. When Earth’s scientists capture and study the rogue Predator, they are disturbed to discover that it has partially human DNA, and call in Dr. Casey Bracket (Olivia Munn) to try and figure out, as she puts it, “if someone f***ed an alien.”

Fortunately, that’s not actually how hybrid Predators are made. We get a glimpse of the DNA splicing process when Rory (Jacob Tremblay) puts on the rogue Predator’s mask and somehow unlocks what appear to be the alien’s memories. We see the rogue Predator on a table with several other Predators operating on it in a way that seemingly causes it great pain (which may be why it came to resent its own kind). We don’t see how the Ultimate Predator came to be made, but presumably it underwent a similar operation.

The Ultimate Predator can grow an organic exoskeleton out of its skin, which is capable of stopping high-powered bullets even at close range. The Ultimate Predator is also capable of infrared vision without the benefit of a Bio-Mask; at one point the movie cuts to the Ultimate Predator’s perspective, and the creature scans the forest, zooms in, and picks out its targets – all without wearing a helmet. Official marketing for the movie says the Ultimate Predator is “made from the collected DNA of the universe’s most badass species,” so it’s likely that it has human DNA in its cocktail (we are pretty badass, after all).

Its massive size seems to be somewhat detrimental to its stealth, as when it first appears it can be heard loudly stomping around outside, but it also has the usual Predator technology and weapons: stealth cloaking, a Plasmacaster, and retractable wrist blades. There’s an extra twist to its wrist blades, however, as they can actually be fired – slicing enemies into pieces and then returning. It also has a wrist-mounted cannon that can fire powerful energy blasts.

The Ultimate Predator apparently thinks that there’s still room for self-improvement, as in the third act of the movie he captures young Rory in order to harvest his DNA. As Casey explains, some believe that autism is actually the next step on the evolutionary chain, so presumably the Predator is seeking to steal some of Rory’s savant abilities, like eidetic memory. Fortunately, Rory’s father, Quinn (Boyd Holbrook) is able to stop that from happening, but if the franchise continues in this continuity, we may see the Predators continuing to evolve and gaining even deadlier abilities.

More: The Predator Review



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2018-09-14 04:09:24 – Hannah Shaw-Williams