The original Predator picture was neither Arnold Schwarzenegger’s nor John McTiernan’s best artistic work, but it created a level of tension or fear that no subsequent Predator film could match. It was also a success since the main characters’ veins seemed to be filled with testosterone rather than blood. It was well-received by critics, audiences, and everyone else. Then there was Predator 2.
Despite being an artistically outstanding film, it missed many of the fundamental aspects that made the original such a success in the first place, and as a result, it did not perform well commercially. As a result, the management began to be concerned about future Predator programs. A few years later, the two Alien vs. Predator pictures were released, but none of them were successful in reviving the Predator franchise to the level that 20th Century Fox had hoped.
As a result, the executives grew even more cautious about their next step. They presumably breathed a sigh of relief when the 2010 film Predators came out, but that did not last long thanks to Shane Black’s The Predator. As a result, the more failures the franchise experiences, the more anxious and hesitant the executives become about investing or greenlighting a project.
That is not to say that creative professionals, such as writers and directors, do not think about the franchise or the characters. Naturally, a lot of scripts for multiple Predator films and sequels were written by a lot of different writers. Despite the fact that several of them had a lot of potentials, they were cut. In this video, we will look at the 7 Predator films that were canceled at some point. Let us get this party started, shall we?
After the first two Predator films, fans didn’t get what they really deserved and had to settle for two poorly executed Alien vs. Predator films in the 2000s. Then in 2010, the film Predators went into a new direction, and for a moment, it felt like the franchise was about to revive itself from the shallows. But then The Predator happened in 2018, and well, we all know how that turned out! However, screenwriter Alex Litvak revealed in early 2020 what Predators 2 could have been if it had been made.
So, In Predators 2, Royce and Isabelle were the last ones left on the Game Preserve Planet, and the three Super Predators were dead. However, the Super Predators in the film belonged to a larger clan, and the rest of the clan kept dropping more people. The film would have opened with someone being dropped into the planet, and a Predator arriving to kill this particular person.
However, Royce and Isabelle slay the Predator before he can do anything, and they welcome the person by saying, “Welcome to the resistance.” This way, Royce and Isabelle had created for themselves a tribe of sorts by saving and bringing in more people into the fold. Despite the fact that the Predators are hunting them incessantly, Royce and Isabelle strike back with an equal and opposite force.
This strong resistance and success has made them the primary and most wanted target of the Super Predators because they want the DNA of Royce and Isabelle so that they can upgrade themselves further. Royce and Isabelle convert this very threat into an opportunity to get back to Earth. Now, how do they do that? Well, the only way they can escape the Game Preserve Planet is by taking over one of the Predator ships.
So, they allow themselves to get captured by the Predators, and then they are taken to the ship so that their DNA can be extracted and further experiments could be performed. Now, this was to be a huge ship, and the rest of the film would have felt like Predators meets Die Hard. We all loved how Bruce Willis’ John McClane fought Alan Rickman’s enigmatic and epic Hans Gruber and his henchmen in a 40 story tall building.
Predators 2 would have ended with the humans getting back to Earth, but there’s a catch. They were about some 300 years late, and Colonial Marines would have discovered them. This was essentially a nice touch because, this way, the film would have tied itself to the Alien Universe. We think it was a great script, but the film never made its way to the silver screen. Predators was a fairly decent film, and instead of going for a direct sequel,
Fox gave us more of a reboot or a stand-alone film. And this turned out to be a problem for the franchise; I mean, we had Predator then Predator 2, many years later, there was Predators and The Predator. There’s hardly a thought being put to build any continuity. Now that Disney has taken over Fox, we can only hope that they have a better vision for the franchise and are sensible.
A Predator Film Set In The 18th Century
At the end of Predator 2, Harrigan successfully kills the City Hunter Predator, and others of his clan appear to take their fallen warrior. In that scene, the Elder Predator gives Harrigan an old flintlock with the engraving ‘Raphael Adolini 1715.’ When the Elder Predator offers Harrigan the pistol, he says, ‘take it.’
It was a sign of respect to the winner. Harrigan proved his mettle against a sturdy alien and became a man deserving the Yaujta respect and honor. Apart from this symbolism, this scene also led to the scope of a prequel set in the early 18th century. But the poor box office performance of Predator 2 ensured that this proposed prequel never happened. However, that didn’t stop Dark Horse Comics from picking up the film’s scene and writing a story around it. The comic is set in the year 1718 and close to the Bermuda Triangle.
A pirate named Raphael Adolini was the captain of his ship, but Raphael was a unique pirate. Yes, he did plunder what he wanted and when other ships saw his sails, they shivered in fear and dread. But Raphael lived by the code of never attacking and looting anything from the church.
One day, his crew found out that a ship was carrying huge amounts of gold, but the wealth belonged to the church, and they knew that Adolini would never go ahead with the loot. Naturally, the crew had a choice to make, and they made it. Antolini was confronted and cornered, but the brave and honorable pirate wasn’t one who gave up his cause easily. He was prepared to kill his own crew for his code or die trying.
Now, this entire incident was being watched over by a Predator. When the battle began, the Predator appeared and sided with Antolini. Together they fought valiantly and defeated all the rogue pirates. The Predator helped Adolini because he saw the human as a worthy and honorable opponent and wanted to hunt him, but that wouldn’t have come to place if the pirates had killed him first.
After everyone was defeated, Adolini and the Predator got into battle stance and were about to fight, but an injured pirate shot Adolini at the back. In his dying moment, Adolini gave the Predator his flintlock and said, “Take it.” The Predator then gave Adolini one of his weapons and repeated the words. This Predator was none other than the one Danny Glover’s character met at the end of the film Predator 2.
The Hunt: Alien vs. Predator
The film Aliens vs. Predator dealt with a team of humans on Earth being entangled in a battle between the two vicious species hell-bent on killing the other. But way before the film was released, there was a comic titled Alien vs. Predator that Dark Horse Comics published in 1990. The story of the comic and the film are way different from one another.
However, screenwriter Peter Briggs had written a script for a canceled AVP film that closely followed the comic’s story. Peter Brigg’s script followed a group of Predators who would seed planets with Xenomorph eggs so that facehuggers could impregnate the planet’s indigenous lifeforms, and the resultant Xenomorphs would be used as prey by the Un-Blooded Yautjas to carry out their blooding ritual or coming of age ceremony.
For this purpose, they had with them a captured Xenomorph Queen that would lay eggs for the seeding. But before dropping the eggs, they would ensure that all royal eggs that would lead to the birthing of other Queens were to be eliminated. But to make things more challenging and exciting, the Predator leader named Broken Tusk interrupted this process and dropped a royal Ovomorph on the planet of Ryushi, which was a lush green planet with tropical weather.
The planet housed a communications outpost, and a small colony of humans took care of its operations. Thanks to the Predators, Ryushi was infested with Xenomorphs that had been birthed from the indigenous lifeforms of Ryushi. When the Predators arrived on Ryushi, they first killed a few humans and then went ahead to find the Xenomorphs, but Broken Tusk’s sense of adventure had proven too much for him, and he lost all his brethren until only he remained alive.
He would then go on to join hands with a human named Hiroko Noguchi to find the Ryushi Queen, kill her, and destroy her hive. Noguchi fought brilliantly against the Xenomorphs and earned the respect of Broken Tusk. In the climactic battle, Broken Tusk got mortally wounded by Xenomorphs, and Noguchi took his weapons to fight the acid-spitting aliens all by herself.
By now, the Colonial Marines had been dispatched to rescue the humans along with any Xenomorph specimen. However, before they could come, Noguchi saw that a Predator Drop Ship appeared to pick up the body of their fallen warrior, Broken Tusk. Since they had been witnessing the unfolding of events, they got impressed by Noguchi’s valor and offered her a place in their ranks as a Predator. Noguchi had tasted the life of adventure and the thrill of hunting, so she accepted their offer.
When Briggs presented his script to 20th Century Fox, he was simply looking for a job and didn’t know that they would go give any heed to his script. But co-incidentally, Fox executives had recently discussed merging the Alien and the Predator universes, and when Briggs’s script came in, it turned out to be quite efficient and well-written, so Fox asked him to rewrite the script. Although the script never lived to see the light of day and got axed, fans of the franchise have often said that Brigg’s script had way more mettle than Paul W. S. Anderson’s 2004 film.
Liam O’ Donnel had written a sequel to the 2007 film Alien vs. Predator Requiem, but since it was in the preliminary stage, the script was simply titled AVP 3. The script was based on a slightly futuristic Earth that was about to face an apocalypse due to non-judicious use of resources and resultant global warming.
Exaggerated levels of global warming had led to a steep rise in water levels, so much so that many island nations had sunk, and large continents like Asia and the Americas had shrunk in size. Many had lost their lives, and the remaining population was surviving in pieces of land with enormous population densities.
In these conditions, finding new land had become indispensable, and the world governments merged together to form a unified world federation under the guidance of Weyland Yutani Corporation. This being said, the world federation had found Yautja weaponry in Africa and was using it to find new planets and colonize them.
However, due to Weyland Yutani’s control and near-autocracy, revolutionaries and rebels had come up, most of whom went to what was left of Africa, which was the only continent out of Weyland’s control. The climactic battle would have taken place in Africa between the freed Xenomorph Queen, a Yautja, and a human.
The script looked promising with a lot of angles involved, including politics, rebellions, etc. It also had a lot of scope for decent visual effects and high-octane battle sequences, but the poor critical and commercial reception that Alien vs. Predator Requiem received became the primary cause of the abandonment of this project. From what we know, the executives wanted the film to be set in space because Requiem mentioned the homeworld of the Yautjas.
Robert Rodriguez’s Predator sequel
Robert Rodriguez was the first person who was asked to write the script of Predators. Although the script was axed in the developmental stage, a lot of elements from the film were included in the 2010 film Predators that Michael Finch and Alex Litvak wrote. The most fascinating aspect of this script was that it brought back the character of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Dutch from the original Predator film.
The story begins with a group of soldiers armed with predator costumes and weaponry attacking a ship that was sailing across an unknown ocean. The soldiers kill the ship’s crew but capture one man alive, who is revealed to be an older Dutch. Later, Dutch is produced in a trial where he is convicted of various crimes, including murder and smuggling weapons. He is then sentenced to prison on a planet named Arkus 6. Jack Carver and his men are assigned with the task of taking Dutch to the said prison. But when they reach Arkus 6, they discover that the landing pad has been destroyed and deserted.
After landing, they decide to walk to the prison, but on their way, they find a crucified Predator, which attacks a man who gets too close. Dutch uses the commotion as a window of opportunity to escape into a jungle. When the soldiers pursued him, they got ambushed by other Predators, who killed a few soldiers but captured most of them alive.
These men are then taken to a campsite near a large arena and are put in cages along with several voracious and deadly alien creatures. The soldiers soon realize that they would be made to fight each other or the alien creatures in the arena like gladiators. One of the soldiers named Hardwick manages to escape her cage and runs into the jungles, but a large black Predator follows her.
However, Dutch saves her from the Predator by jumping into a pool of mud to escape the Predator’s heat vision. Furthermore, it is revealed that the military has been trading humans for Predator weaponry for quite some time now. To make things worse, the soldiers find out that the Predators have been experimenting with humans and aliens to create deadly slave beasts.
In the end, Dutch and Hardwick free many alien creatures, who wreak havoc on the facility. They use this chaos to free the captive soldiers and flee. Dutch then frees the crucified Predator in the hopes that he would ally with him against the common enemy.
But the Predators had been following the humans, and they all get either captured or killed. Dutch was about to meet his death too, but the crucified Predator appeared in a stolen Predator spaceship and saved him from death. While Dutch is on his way home, he theorizes that a full-scale Predator invasion on Earth isn’t very far.
As you may notice, this script bears a close resemblance with the film; for instance, the Black Predator is in line with Berserker, the alien creatures and the River Ghost from the film also seem similar, then there is the crucified Predator.
But the most striking similarity is the central theme of humans being captured and taken to a whole different planet as prey. In fact, the 2010 film was supposed to feature Arnold in a cameo, but since he was not available at the time for filming, his part was edited out.
Vincenzo Natali’s Predators
It is a known fact that many writers and directors were attached to the Predator or Alien franchise at some point or another. The only issue was that most of these projects never saw the light of the day. One such director was Vincenzo Natali, the director of films like Splice, Cypher, Cube, etc.
He revealed in a 2015 tweet that he had pitched his idea for a Predators film to Fox in 2010, but there was no established script as such. It was simply an idea that humans would fight Predators on their own planet, Yautja Prime.
However, he did give a string of visually rich drawings with a spiky and sleek-looking Predator, a beautiful jungle that was to act as a war zone, etc. Although the project never went very far ahead, Natali’s take on a Predator film would have been interesting.
Just like the previous entry, there was another short-lived Predator project that died in the infant stages of development. Fox had always maintained the opinion that there could be no Predator film that didn’t star Arnold in it. Obviously, they had taken their lesson after the failure of Predator 2 that starred Danny Glover.
So, the co-writer of Predators, Alex Litvak, addressed this issue, and he had pitched a story to Fox sometime in 2010 that kept Arnold in the central stage. The story was to follow a Predator ship crash-landing on Earth and the government approaching Dutch to lead a mission to investigate the matter. Dutch would have been portrayed as an older man who was living a peaceful and secluded life.
After reaching the Predator ship, the team of men would have been attacked by the hunters, whose only target was Dutch, the man who had killed the Jungle Hunter. And from there, it would have followed a similar plot to the original film, but this time from a more modern visual angle and against several Predators instead of just one. However, the script never made any success, and it’s possible that Arnold had lost all interest in resuming his role of Dutch.