Prey director Dan Trachtenberg believes that the final length of the Predator movie was always intended to be 97 minutes.
Speaking exclusively to TechRadar at Prey’s UK junket, Trachtenberg was surprised to reveal that the sci-fi actioner’s runtime was “destined”. How come? Because every cut of the upcoming Hulu movie, no matter who edited it, was always 97 minutes long.
Curiously, Trachtenberg’s revealing comments were not part of the actual interview. Before the official chat began, TechRadar’s Tom Power commented on Prey’s pleasingly short runtime. Having a movie under two hours is a rarity these days. That’s when Trachtenberg revealed the surprising quirk behind Prey’s final runtime and joked that it was seemingly fated to happen.
“By the way, each cut of this movie was 97 minutes,” he explained. “There was no first cut that was four hours – it was always that long. The first pass the editor did and then my first… everything was always the same. The film [runtime] did not change. Yes, we added and removed so many scenes and stuff, but somehow it always came out in the same runtime. It was like it was meant to be.”
Suffice to say, we shouldn’t expect a director’s cut anytime soon. However, Prey’s final year also brings down the curtain on a particularly exciting coincidence in the Predator film franchise – all of which can be streamed on Disney Plus in the UK and Hulu in the US.
Until now, each of the four Predator films that preceded Prey were an impressively identical 107 minutes long. Well, pretty much every other entry anyway – Predator 2, which hit theaters in November 1990, technically runs 108 minutes, but what difference does a single minute make when presented with a terrific opportunity like this?
Regardless, the latest installment of Prey simultaneously breaks this weird run-time series of Predator films while adding its own unusual quirk to the long-running film series. If 20th Century Studios and Disney decide to greenlight another entry in the beloved series, we can’t help but wonder if Prey 2 – or whatever it’s called – will also be 97 minutes long. Time will tell – and yes, that pun is totally intended.
Set 300 years before the events of the 1987 original, Prey stars Amber Midthunder as Naru, a Comanche tribe who longs to be seen as a skilled and fearsome warrior among her people. Setting out to prove her worth, Naru begins hunting an unspecified creature in the territory her clan occupies. However, Naru soon realizes that the prey she’s after is a bloodthirsty alien sent to Earth – armed with a deadly arsenal, no less – to hunt humanity for sport. So it turns out that Naru isn’t the predator in this game of cat and mouse – she’s the prey.
For more Prey-based content, check back with TechRadar later this week for our review, as well as our exclusive in-depth chat with Trachtenberg, Midthunder and producer Jhane Myers.
Prey will forego its release in theaters when it arrives on Friday, August 5th. The Predator pre-sequel will be available to stream on Hulu in the US and Disney Plus in non-US territories.