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For a franchise that really only has a couple of proper installments, the Predator films have a strong following. When Shane Black announced his intention to direct the next film in the series, most fans were cautiously optimistic. However, when franchises change hands, it’s a forgone conclusion that some things will change. Black has now begun to speak about how his film, The Predator, will be different from its predecessors. The primary change will be cosmetic, as the Predator costume is getting changed up.
The original Predator was designed by legendary Hollywood makeup effects creator Stan Winston, the man responsible for everything from Terminator 2: Judgement Day to John Carpenter’s The Thing. Over the decades, the Predator has become as iconic as any of them. As such, it might be concerning to some fans that the look is going to be changed. However, Shane Black tells ComingSoon that he won’t be the first to make changes to the original design, and it doesn’t sound like he’ll be doing anything drastic to it.
It’s not to ‘improve,’ it’s [to] make it fun, make it different, make it organically different. So what’s the extension of it that makes sense, that’s exciting? There have been a lot of changes to Stan’s design over the years. These different Predator movies have done different things. Ultimately it’s not about design to me, it’s about the story you want to tell. There are people who are always going to agonize over Iron Man, what color his suit is. Maybe this weapon does a new thing, but if the story is not good I don’t give a sh*t what color the suit is. In The Predator we’re doing a lot of upgrades to what you would consider to be the traditional Predator technology and look, but hopefully the story is what’s going to drag people in, not just the attention to the minutiae.
In the end, we’d have to agree with Shane Black. The story is going to be the key to the film. Whether the changes to the lead monster are extensive or "organic" is less important than the question of whether or not the narrative is any good. Sure, some fans will nitpick minor modifications, but if the movie is good, it will be easier to overlook those things, and if the story is bad, strict adherence to the classic character won’t change that.
We’re certainly looking forward to getting our first look at the new Predator. If both the look and the technology are getting changed up a bit, then The Predator will have several new surprises for us. Are you excited to see them?