If there's something missing from most of today's sci-fi cinema, it's the use of practical effects over CGI. Thankfully, in the Predator's case, practical effects and "guy-in-suit" has always been utilized in every Predator film - and will once again be used heavily in Shane Black's The Predator! The folks over at Den of Geek recently published an interview they conducted with Tom Woodruff Jr. and Alec Gillis of Studio ADI during their set visit last year. Woodruff and Gillis are no strangers to operating Predator effects and explained how important it was to blend the use of practical and digital effects for this new film. They also male mention of a "10-foot mutha..." - a massive Predator specimen who undoubtedly causes some problems for our band of unlikely heroes... Read on for an excerpt:
We’re big fans of practical effects, because we think the real stuff just looks the best,” Woodruff says. “That’s not to say there’s not a place for the digital as well, because there always is. So there are several Predator characters in this movie that are practical, as they should be in our opinion, and we think it’s what the fans want to see: a real Predator standing next to a person.
There are little clues here and there, however, that not all the creature effects in The Predator will be practical. Later in the day, we see a sequence where a Predator goes flying backwards through a window – likely the same school window we saw Holbrook slammed up against in an earlier scene. It’s a small yet near looking stunt: we see the shot from a low, three-quarter angle as the Predator crashes through the wooden window frame.
Once the camera operators have caught the take, a crew member rushes in with those mirrored ball things that visual effects use to add CG elements to the sequence in post-production. First a mirrored ball is lowered in front of the camera, then a matt one, then a third one textured after the Predator’s skin: that pale, mottled grey with an amphibious, sticky sheen. Finally a prop arm is lowered into view; it’s unmistakably a Predator arm, but huge even by the alien hunter’s standards. Could it be that The Predator of the title isn’t a guy in a suit like the others, but a much bigger one brought to life with CGI? The occasional mention of a “10-foot mutha” certainly suggests that he will be.
There's plenty more available from Den of Geek's set visit, including numerous interviews with some of the film's cast - all of which emphasize Shane Black's focus on developing concrete characters who fans will feel for and connect with, much like the original film from 1987. You can read the entire report here!
Releasing on September 14th, 2018, Shane Black directs The Predator (Predator 4) - a new film set in in the iconic Predator movie series by 20th Century Fox. If you're anticipating this film, you will want to join in our The Predator (Predator 4) forum! It's a great place to discuss the upcoming Predator movie and engage with other Predator movie fans.
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