EXCLUSIVE – PREDATOR: DARK AGES – INTERVIEW

Today we got the chance to interview some of the makers of the fan film Predator: Dark Ages

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You might remember a few days ago when we suggested you check out the film, well we wanted to go a step further and find out a bit more about the film from the makers themselves. We were very lucky to get a chance to talk to James Bushe (Director) and Simon Rowling (DOP).

What’s your favorite movie? Simon (DOP): Terminator 2 & The Big Lebowski.  James (writer/director): Predator, Raiders of Lost Arc, LOTR, T2

The Dark Age is something that hasn’t been seen yet in the Predator franchise. What inspired you to choose that time period? Were there any other suggested? (James) It was something that was hinted at towards the end of Predator 2, when an Elder Predator handed Danny Glover a flint pistol. One time in a pub myself and a friend was suggesting possible Hollywood ideas and Predator came up. We then moved onto the idea of possibly setting it in the past. Being a huge fan of medieval films in general it was the perfect fit for me. Roman times and samurais/ninjas, in Feudal Japan were the other ideas on the day. But knights won out for me.

It’s obvious that the first Predator is what inspired you most. Was there any homage that you wanted to include that you couldn’t? Simon (DOP): Has to be ‘Get to the chopper’ and many others, but we felt we didn’t want to rip off the original, just give a nod to it! Yes I think we got in enough. Would have been nice to of had a “Dillion, you son of a bitch!” moment too haha. Plus a scene at beginning show how badass our group was.

Were there any obstacles with copyright of the character or music? Simon (DOP): It is just a fan film, so we are not making any money. The music was written and recorded from scratch, but based on the original.

How different is the original conception of the short to the finished film? (James) We originally had hoped to include an extra one or two characters, plus would of liked to of had another 10 minutes or so to take our time building the character a little more. As mentioned above we  wanted to have a scene that showed how skilled our team was at the beginning, dealing with a bunch of mercenaries. We also wanted a prison scene too, which became the camp scene.

Was there anything you wanted to have in the film but couldn’t add due to budget restraints? Simon (DOP): We got most of what we wanted. If anything it was some more heli shots, but the wind was too strong on one day. It was more ‘time’ than anything, more days to get more shots, and extend the story a bit more. Yes agree. Just some more time would have helped us to get more epic shots. Would have helped a little on some of our action scenes too.

How’s the response been to the short? Simon (DOP): Its been brilliant, we couldn’t be more pleased with the reception! The biggest fans in the world, who are true followers of the Predator are so pleased with what we have done. There are people who are unaware of our budget and they make the most criticism, which are only minor things anyway, but people who are aware of it, are just blown away by what we have accomplished on £12k.£13k? Yes I wrote it as a fan, but suddenly it hits you how off you could be with your idea! But it has been a fantastic response and we are all very happy. In general any criticism has just been minor things, mainly to do with wanting it longer to have developed the story more.

What’s next for the team? Is this leading to something bigger? Simon (DOP): Maybe a feature but not based on The Predator. But based on this character’s journey. As well as other films that myself and James are looking at working on. We have enough ideas that we originally thought up for the short that we had to drop that we would love to expand on. So a feature following a similar venture is something we are looking at.

Will we see a sequel? Maybe another age or franchise? (James) Maybe a little series of similar journey’s into the past at different time periods, yes. It depends on various factors. We love the idea, but it takes a lot of time and effort. A lot of people have said they would love to see different era of history, which would make for a great miniseries or something. But yes time and funding is the main problem we would face. Unless Fox got involved of course lol.

We’d love to see more from these boys either if it’s something new or a sequel to Predator: Dark Ages. What ever is next we’ll make sure we keep you posted.

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