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Shane Black says new Predator movie is an ‘event-sized project’

March 24th, 2016 by Phil Robinson Comments


Back in 2014, Predator 4 was announced by 20th Century Fox, with Shane Black set to write and direct. While the 2010 sequel Predators fared well at the box office and received reasonable reviews from critics, the studio longed to recapture the brilliance and suspense of the original 1986 film, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Recently, Thrillist (via Squareeyed) caught up with the writer-director, who explained his rationale behind taking on the project and what plans the studio have:

“They called me and I was reluctant. I said, ‘Look. You guys at Fox, I mean, I enjoy these movies, but we’ve been churning out these AVP whatever, they each cost a certain amount of money, they’re okay, but there’s no effort to elevate them or make them any kind of an event.’ They’re just sort of another Predator. ‘Oh, there’s another one that came out.’ They said, ‘What if we said to you we want to reinvent this, and really treat it with as much of an event status, or as much hoopla as we would the Alien prequel (Alien: Covenant), which is coming out also? We really want to make this something. The kind of movie that people line up for.’ I said, ‘Really, you’ll spend a bunch of money?’ They go, ‘Yep.’ I go, ‘Make it really scale, spectacle?’ ‘Yep.’ ‘S#@t, that sounds interesting.’”

The original Predator followed Dutch (Schwarzenegger), who lead a group of soldiers on a mission in Central America to take down a gun running operation, where they run into the mysterious title character, who takes down the mercenaries one-by-one with expert tactical hunting.

The movie was more of a cult favourite than a box office-shattering blockbuster, spawning sequels like 1990’s Predator 2, followed by the critically-panned Alien Vs. Predator. Then came Alien Vs Predator – Requiem, which threatened to kill off both franchises, before being partially salvaged by Predators in 2010.

In this new interview he compared the size and scope of his last directorial effort, Marvel’s Iron Man 3, which took over $1 billion at the global box office from a $200 million budget. If Black’s comparisons are accurate, Predator 4 is going to be an enormous movie, that both Black and Fox are taking seriously.

“I think the first one was great, and it was contained, and it was a perfect little gem for what it was. I think there’s an expansion that needs to take place, and also just a love for that era, that movie, and the mythology of the Predator. I think that they came to me knowing pretty much that… they said, basically, if I wanted to make Predator but treat it like it was Iron Man 3 instead of just another little movie. I said, ‘Let’s really do it right this time.’”

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Hidden deep in the woods, past the abandoned insane asylum and long-forgotten summer camp, off the old dirt road, across the creaky timber bridge, lies a log cabin. Under the full moon some have said they've heard blood-curdling howls from deep in the basement, though none have been brave enough to explore further... If they had, the shocking reveal would be that the screams come from old horror VHS tapes, accompanied by the maniacal laugh of Phil Robinson, brought on by comics and wrestling promos. The self-confessed "horror guy", he has also been known to talk about Spider-Man and heavy metal at great, unnecessary lengths. Yes, he knows he needs a haircut.