Prey Director Shares the Story Behind the Predator Prequel’s Title

The latest installment of the Predator series, Prey, premiered to great success on Hulu, debuting as the most-watched premiere ever on the streaming platform. It was also very well-received by fans and critics with high scores at Rotten Tomatoes. There are many fans considering it to be a worthy companion to the original with some fans enjoying it just as much or even more so. That’s never easy to do by the time you get to the fifth installment of any movie franchise.

One key difference this movie has from its predecessors is that it’s the only installment that doesn’t have the word “Predator” in its title. After Predator, Predator 2, Predators, and The Predator, many had been referring to Prey as Predator 5 before its official title was released. As for why they went with Prey, director Dan Trachtenberg says in a new interview with THR that he didn’t think he could get the film greenlit otherwise. The idea was to pitch the film as a loose spinoff as The Predator was also in development at the time and Prey needed to be differentiated.

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“It’s the craziest thing. [Prey] was in my initial pitch for the movie. They were making the Shane Black movie [2018’s The Predator] that I assumed was intended to be a franchise starter, a trilogy perhaps, or what have you. So I knew the only way that they would agree to making this other kind of Predator movie is if I pitched it as what Rogue One or Solo are to the Star Wars franchise. So Prey would also be this other thing, and the title really suggests that it’s sort of a mirror to the main franchise.”

Prey Has the Same Double Meaning as Predator

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Trachtenberg knew that he needed to come up with a name that worked well for the franchise despite not having the word “Predator” in the title. The filmmaker explains how there was something about Prey that everyone appreciated as it came with the same double meaning that worked perfectly when compared to Predator. While “Predator” could be used to refer to both monsters and humans, the same can be said for “Prey” as seen in the new film.

“So that was in the initial pitch, and then I started pitching other titles. But everyone really fell in love with Prey, and I think it works so well because it has the exact same double meaning that Predator has. And there certainly is precedent. Other movies have used different titles that are still inside of another IP, and I think this one proves that you can still have success without calling something Part Two, Begins or what have you.”

Prey is streaming on Hulu.