Filmmaker Dan Trachtenberg and 20th Century Studios are going hunting again.
Trachtenberg, who earned an Emmy nomination for his 2022 Predator movie Prey, is returning to the sci-fi action horror franchise to make a new installment.
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Titled Badlands, the new Predator feature is not a sequel to Prey, which was set in 1719 and centered on a young Comanche woman forced to fight for survival against the intergalactic hunters, but rather a brand new story. Plot details are being kept secret but this one is said to be set sometime in the future. Like Prey, however, it too will feature a female lead.
As with Prey, Trachtenberg wrote the story with Patrick Aison, with the latter penning the screenplay. The project has been working under invisibility for some time and is far enough along that a July start of production is being planned.
Badlands isn’t the only Predator project in the works. The surprise success of Prey crossed from critics to audience and reinvigorated the franchise. Now the studio is planning a host of Predator projects, with Trachtenberg at the center.
20th Century had no comment.
Predator was the muscle-bound action 1987 movie that starred Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers and Jesse Ventura as commandos being stalked in a jungle by a fearsome alien. John McTiernan directed the film, which helped cement Schwarzenegger’s star power. Three sequels followed — 1990s’ Predator 2, 2010’s Predators, and 2018’s The Predator — with Prey considered a prequel. The franchise has also launched popular comics (Marvel Comics last year put out Predator vs Wolverine) and video games.
Prey proved to be a massive streaming success when it debuted on Hulu, setting viewing records for the streamer. But originally the movie was made with a theatrical release in mind. That changed, however, during 20th Century’s sale to Disney; according to sources, the Fox-owned studio had an output deal with HBO, which meant that Prey would have gone to a rival studio after its theatrical release. With strengthening streaming services a top priority in those intense days of The Streaming Wars, and with the pandemic still hampering box office, new owner Disney believed releasing the movie on Hulu was the best option.
Trachtenberg caught the attention of Hollywood with 2016’s 10 Cloverfield Lane, a tense and clausterphobic entry in J.J. Abrams-produce Cloverfield movie series. He is repped by CAA and Grandview.
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