Prey director Dan Trachtenberg tried to clarify whether the next Predator movie is actually a prequel.
Speaking exclusively to on the film’s UK trip, Trachtenberg surprisingly revealed that he doesn’t refer to Prey as a Predator prequel. As Trachtenberg goes on to explain, though, there’s a significant reason why he doesn’t believe the next Hulu movie is a prequel movie in the traditional sense.
“Personally, I never refer to it as a prequel,” Trachtenberg said. “Although technically I think so. When we initially announced [Prey], it was suggested that we were going to tell the Predator’s origin story. That is no what are we doing.”
What kind of movie is Prey then? As it turns out, the answer is much more complicated than we previously thought.
With the Disney Plus movie – it will be available on the Disney streamer in territories outside the US – set 300 years before the 1987 movie Predator starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Prey is technically a prequel movie. However, as Trachtenberg confirmed, he doesn’t map the origins of Yautja – the actual name of the Predator species – in the same way that, say, Prometheus revealed how facehuggers and xenomorphs came to be. Or, at least, how their prototype iterations were born, which inevitably leads to these creatures evolving into the facehuggers and xenomorphs we see in other Alien movies.
It turns out there’s a delightfully odd quirk with the runtime of each cut of #PreyMovie – and it’s one that reveals an even more curious feature about the Predator film franchise. Read all about it on my exclusive : https://t.co/AeeS8YimrAAugust 2, 2022
So how do we define Prey as a movie? It’s set well before the events of the first Predator movie, which took place in 1987, but it’s not an origin story per se. It can be classified as a prequel – that is, a movie that takes place before the previous entries in the franchise, but which was released after them. Once again, though, this only muddy the waters even more. All signs, then, point to it being a prequel to the Predator film franchise.
That is, unless it takes place on a different timeline. Several film series, particularly those involving time travel, have started messing with the linearity of their timelines, whether in an attempt to reinvent the franchise or tell new stories using established characters we’ve seen before.
The most recent Star Trek films, starring the likes of Chris Pine’s Commander Kirk and Zachary Quinto’s Spock, are a classic example. The creative team behind 2009’s Star Trek, 2013’s Star Trek: Into Darkness, and more have placed these films in a completely new timeline – the Kelvin Timeline – to work around issues with the use of characters we’ve seen in previous films. from Star Trek, such as the stars William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy and Kirk and Spock. Other film series, including the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) – read our Marvel movies in order and the DCEU movie guides in order for more – have also experimented with non-timeline formulas. linear or complex.
Asked if Prey exists in a separate timeline from the other four Predator films that preceded it, however, Trachtenberg wasn’t sure whether Disney and 20th Century Studios consider him to coexist with these other productions.
“This obviously takes place 300 years in the past, so technically speaking [it should exist alongside those movies]”, he replied. “I don’t think it’s a separate timeline, but I could be wrong.”
Despite Trachtenberg’s reluctance to use the word “prequel”, this is arguably the best and simplest way to describe Prey. Otherwise, we’ll be debating the matter all day.
For more Prey-based content, read about the strange quirk that sets the latest Predator movie apart from its predecessors. Alternatively, check out our list of the best sci-fi movies of all time, or watch one of these five top-notch sci-fi shows, we look forward to the return of Apple TV Plus’ flagship sci-fi series.
Be sure to check out our spoiler-free review of Prey as well. And keep an eye out for our exclusive, in-depth chat with Trachtenberg, lead actor Amber Midthunder and executive producer Jhane Meyers later this week.
Prey will launch on Hulu in the US and Disney Plus in regions outside the US on Friday, August 5th.