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‘Prey’ Director Dan Trachtenberg to Oversee Revamped ‘Predator’ Franchise Beginning with New Film ‘Badlands’

Following the success of “Predator” prequel “Prey,” writer/director Dan Trachtenberg is rolling out a whole new “Predator” franchise at 20th Century Studios.

As first announced by The Hollywood Reporter, Trachtenberg is set to helm “Badlands,” a new “Predator” storyline set in the future and featuring a female lead. Additionally, 20th Century Studios is reportedly planning a slew of “Predator” projects with Trachtenberg overseeing.

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Trachtenberg and Patrick Aison were behind the story for “Badlands,” with Aison penning the screenplay. Trachtenberg will direct.

“Prey” was set in 1719 and followed an Indigenous woman (Amber Midthunder) who fought for survival against alien invaders. The film made history on Hulu as the streamer’s biggest premiere ever and was nominated for six Emmys, including Outstanding Television Movie. The IndieWire review praised the film for being a “thrilling journey” that helped revive the franchise.

“The key to ‘Prey’ is screenwriter Patrick Aison’s smart interpretation of its table-turning title: this one is about the Predator as much as it is about his seeming prey, someone used to being counted out who actually offers the biggest danger to the alien baddie,” IndieWire’s Kate Erbland wrote.

The film served as a prequel to the original (and iconic) 1987 “Predator” movie that starred Arnold Schwarzenegger, late actor Carl Weathers, and Jesse Ventura. A trio of sequels followed, released in 1990, 2010, and 2018, as well as 2004 spin-off “Alien vs. Predator.”

Tratchenberg told IndieWire in 2023 that “Prey” set out to combine “period and sci-fi and survival stories, and making a movie that could primarily be told through action with little to no dialogue.”

The “Predator” franchise was owned by Fox, and “Prey” was made before the studio’s merger with Hulu parent company Disney. “We were in a filing cabinet for a couple years, and then when it came back, it was brought up that maybe Hulu would be the place for it,” Trachtenberg said at the time. “Whether that was in addition to theatricality or not was uncertain.”

Now, with Trachtenberg at the helm, 20th Century Studios is full steam ahead with more “Predator” projects.

“There’s no George Lucas for the Predator franchise,” Trachtenberg said in August 2023 in an almost predictive way. “‘Predator,’ to its great effect, was very slim on lore. That was the whole point: that we barely knew much about this thing. So it’s a unique franchise in that way.”

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