The Predator director Shane Black explains what makes the new Upgrade creature so dangerous. Black has been upgraded himself in the Predator franchise, moving from playing ill-fated soldier Hawkins in the 1987 original to co-writing and directing the latest sequel. Black is aiming to reinvent the series for a new era, with the story following a group of soldiers going up against a new breed of Predators and a government mission to capture and study them.
The main antagonist of The Predator will be the Upgrade, which is the result of the titular hunters splicing themselves with DNA from various alien creatures they’ve hunted, and cherry-picking their best traits. The movie underwent three weeks of reshoots this year that changed much of the third act, which changed the finale setting from day to night and will feature the heroes facing off against this seemingly unstoppable creature in a forest as it tests their abilities.
With The Predator, Black is seeking to make the creatures scary again after decades of overexposure through various sequels, comics and video games, and in a new EW interview, he explains why the Upgrade will be such a fierce threat:
If the predator was to be an amalgam of, not just an ordinary predator, but also a collection of traits garnered from the various most powerful species that they’ve hunted, then you basically would have one that is stronger, faster, and smarter. We finally got an image that we liked, which captures this very canny, very cunning, and effortlessly powerful, savage predator. One of the only quibbles that I’ve had with some of the past predators is that, if you’re not careful, it can look like a guy in a football suit; big, bulky guy just stomping around. I wanted a certain more graceful, more light, more athletic quality, literally like a predator. If you watch a cheetah, it’s not clunky.
The Upgrade Predator stands 10-foot tall and since it’s body is already reinforced, it doesn’t need to wear armor. Some fans have theorized what kind of DNA makes up this new foe, including the xenomorph from the Alien series and maybe a dash of Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger) from the original. This latter theory makes a certain amount of sense since he was able to take down a Predator using both his brains and brawn, and rumors still abound the actor may make a cameo in the final movie.
The Predator reshoots also added some links to previous movies, including the spear Lex receives at the end of Alien Vs Predator. If the Upgrade does contain a little xenomorph in its DNA mix, this could be a way to open up the series for another crossover with the Alien franchise. While the AVP movies are generally lambasted by fans, some feel that there’s still a lot of potential in the concept.
- The Predator (2018) release date: Sep 14, 2018