Things aren’t looking great for Shane Black’s Predator movie.
It’s not just because using the words “Shane Black” and “Predator” in the same sentence makes movie audiences want to vomit.
It’s not even because fans are afraid that the Predator will be replaced in the third act by Ben Kingsley doing an impression of a charming British drug addict.
No, the problem that’s hit the movie now is that, after months of dancing around the project, lead actor Benicio Del Toro has walked away, leaving the movie temporarily without a recognizable human face.
Of course, Fox has quickly pedaled out a new replacement. The studio executives must be impressed with how Logan is shaping out, because they stuffed Boyd Holbrook into Del Toro’s shoes, gave him a swift pat on the buttocks for luck, and pushed him out into the limelight in Benicio’s place.
Holbrook is currently best known for his work on Narcos, a Netflix original series. Fans of missing persons thrillers may also know him from Gone Girl, if they were able to tear themselves away from Ben Affleck’s worry face for more than thirty seconds.
Holbrook’s most notable role, though, hasn’t debuted in theaters yet. He’ll play Donald Pierce in Logan, Hugh Jackman’s swansong as the indestructible Wolverine.
No explanation has been given for Benicio Del Toro’s departure from the new Predator movie. Presumably he woke up one day and realized that he’d signed on for a Shane Black movie about the Predator, and panicked.
Things were already looking fairly shaky for Shane Black’s sci-fi reboot. A lack of general information (or, indeed, interest) in the project has left plenty of commenters a little worried as to how the movie will turn out.
Shane Black has said that the movie will be an attempt to “event-ize” the franchise, although the director failed to explain what this new word actually means.
Whatever Black has planned, it’s pretty clear that Benicio Del Toro was central to his vision. The actor was courted for several months by Fox, who even agreed to move the filming schedule for the movie to make allowances for Del Toro’s other plans.
The studio must be really angry with whoever had that bright idea.
It’s entirely possible that, with Boyd Holbrook in the lead role, this new take on the Predator franchise will shine brightly, and revitalize the genre of alien monster hunting movies.
It’s possible. It could happen.
The odds do really seem stacked against this one, though. There aren’t a lot of 80s science fiction reboots that go off without a hitch.
Throwing Shane Black into the mix just makes things more confusing. Nobody’s really sure what to expect—all we know if that his vision of the movie is somehow very unappealing to Benny Del Toro.
So good luck, Boyd Holbrook. You might just need it.