Despite the challenges of making the prosthetic creature costume in Shane Black's The Predator seem realistic, Moonlight's Trevante Rhodes revealed that the experience was just perfect. A follow-up to Nimród Antal's 2007 Predators, The Predator showcases a unique spin on the franchise, changing the landscape to modern day suburbia, where a young boy named Rory McKenna (Jacob Tremblay) inadvertently triggers a beacon to the Predators, which ends up summoning them to Earth.
That action ends up forcing a group of former soldiers to unwittingly battle the titular extraterrestrial hunters, only to discover that the creatures have been genetically upgraded with the DNA of several other species. As the fourth movie in the franchise (not counting the two spinoffs, Alien vs. Predator and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem), The Predator introduces Shane Black (The Nice Guys, Iron Man 3) as director and co-writer alongside Fred Dekker (The Monster Squad), as well as a cast that also includes Boyd Holbrook, Olivia Munn, Keegan-Michael Key, Sterling K. Brown, Thomas Jane, Alfie Allen, and Trevante Rhodes, who opened up about co-star Brian Prince - the film's Predator - and how he perfectly disappeared into the role.
In an exclusive interview with Rhodes during San Diego Comic-Con 2018, Screen Rant discovered that the combination of Prince and the Predator prosthetics turned out to be a success. Rhodes explained that he not only appreciated and respected the craft of his fellow co-stars during what he described as "a long shoot," but also the technical accomplishment that Prince brought to the movie. He said:
"We were there for awhile. It was a long shoot. To have that with guys that you appreciate and respect their artistry and their craft and then you see them come into the person and be the person. And then we have a practical Predator! (...) Brian Prince, he's 6'10 (...) does parkour. It's perfect. The whole experience was just unparalleled."
According to SDCC footage and a commentary from Black, the Predator designs are wholly unique compared to other entries in the franchise. While Predators pushed the envelope by showcasing a wider variety of the creatures, this movie presents a completely new, evolved iteration of them. For example, The Predator will feature a "Super Predator" that significantly modifies the original creature's design. However, it's unclear whether or not Prince is playing the "Super Predator" or one of the original creatures.
While Rhodes is best known for his breakout performance in Barry Jenkins' Moonlight (which won the Oscar for Best Picture at the 89th Academy Awards), he does have experience in action movies, having recently starred in 12 Strong. That said, The Predator is the actor's first experience in a high-budget science fiction movie heavy on practical effects. And, while it's currently unclear how close he'll actually get to the creatures during the span of the movie (or whether his character will stick around for Predator sequels), his on-set perspective confirmed that this long-awaited sequel has plenty to show for itself.
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- The Predator (2018) release date: Sep 14, 2018