When you think of the Predator franchise, the first name that comes to mind is Arnold Schwarzenegger. The Austrian Oak starred in the original 1987 movie, a film that helped catapult him to super stardom, and has been linked with the sequels ever since. The film was a critical success, a cult classic, and whenever another movie in the franchise is planned, his name inevitably comes up. It did so for Predator 2 in 1990, and again for Predators in 2010, but nothing came of it.
Now, Shane Black is rebooting the franchise with another sequel, The Predator, one that fits into the mythology of the previous three movies, and Arnold Schwarzenegger’s name has been mooted for the movie once again. However, this time, there may be some truth to the rumours surrounding Arnie’s much-delayed return: this week, it was revealed that Schwarzenegger is meeting with writer and director Shane Black to discuss a potential return — or so it seems.
Arnold Schwarzenegger is very much back to his acting ways, and has been adding some decent movies to his already impressive CV over the past five years. Speaking to The Arnold Fans, Schwarzenegger revealed he is planning on meeting with director Shane Black to discuss the movie.
“I haven’t talked with him (Shane Black) yet but I’m going to meet with him for lunch sometime soon. Just as soon as I’m finished with this (Arnold’s Sports Festival) and ‘The Apprentice’ and all this stuff. But I will get together with him. If there is any news, we’ll of course let you know right away. There’s also a meeting coming up soon about Conan, about the project moving forward.”
Schwarzenegger was speaking from the Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus, Ohio, and currently features in The Apprentice, the U.S version of the reality TV show. The fact he is considering the opportunity, once his obligations are clear, is a revelation for the fans, who have always expected Schwarzenegger to return to the role of Dutch, one of his more popular characters. Whether he will feature as a cameo or a main role — hint, the fans want the latter — is open to debate. Schwarzenegger is still acting solidly after a few years in politics, but the actor has aged considerably since his original stint in the franchise. It’s never stopped him before though — Schwarzenegger is known as a consummate professional on set — and Black will be more than aware of this.
As mentioned, this isn’t the first time the actor was considered to for a return to the franchise. Schwarzenegger was eventually replaced in Predator 2 by Danny Glover, and his character, Major Alan “Dutch” Schaefer, was only mentioned by name. He was also expected to cameo in Predators, with director Nimród Antal envisioning him in a short role, but Laurence Fishburne ended up featuring as Noland instead. Their meeting could be nothing but two friends having a simple catch-up, but the timing couldn’t be more coincidental, what with Shane Black developing The Predator as we speak. Let’s not forget the two worked very closely on Predator — Black had a starring role, as well as earning an uncredited writing credit when he polished the script — so there’s definitely some shared creativity there.
At this early stage, it’s nothing but simple rumor, but with Schwarzenegger returning to the Terminator and Conan franchises, both of which put him on the Hollywood map, could he make it a trifecta and return to Predator, too? With the film becoming an authentic sequel to the original Predator movies, placing Dutch in the spotlight once again isn’t too far of a stretch. Is it?
The Predator will swing into theatres on March 2, 2018.
[Image via 20th Century Fox]