How The Predator Ending Nearly Featured Ripley, Newt, and Time Travel
Director Shane Black's The Predator was expected to revive the sci-fi series to its rightful [...]
Director Shane Black's The Predator was expected to revive the sci-fi series to its rightful glory, only for it to undergo some creative changes during the production, ultimately leading towards an endeavor that was critically and financially underwhelming. Stunt performer Breanna Watkins shared previously how she had filmed an alternate ending that would have confirmed the crossover nature the Predator franchise has with the Alien series, with Watkins opening up about her time on the film and how one ending featured the appearance of Ellen Ripley from the Alien franchise, as well as Aliens' Newt playing a pivotal role in taking down the main threat of The Predator.
"It was Shane Black who directed me on main unit, along with the DP and the main production crew. The Rebecca 'Newt' Jorden scene involved a number of lines for me that Shane Black directed, showing me coming out of the pod and interacting with the other characters, which can be seen in the leaked BTS photos. That was great because in that moment I really felt that I had become the grown-up version of Newt in this proper sequence," Watkins confirmed with AvP Galaxy. "It was a warning/call to arms, to the 'in charge' characters in the room."
She added, "A whole backstory was explained to me for each of my two endings … however I believe that the franchise owners may still want to have the option to use those backstories so I shouldn't really go into specifics of what I was told, but I can say that time travel, cloning, and genetic enhancement was involved. The backstory did vary depending on which ending they were going to use."
The first confirmation that both Predator and Alien existed in the same universe came in Predator 2 when fans saw the skull of a xenomorph that had seemingly been collected by the sequel's titular hunter. Years later, the two franchises would collide directly in Alien vs. Predator films.
Watkins noted that, with Sigourney Weaver having played Ripley in four Alien films, her time on set playing Ripley was merely in the capacity of being a body double, potentially to keep the identity of the character somewhat obscured or to allow visual trickery to result in Weaver's likeness being utilized. With Newt having only appeared in Aliens and as a child, however, Watkins admitted that her appearance as the character could have allowed her to reprise the role in the future.
"They also asked me to be the body double for Ripley as an alternative option for the ending, that was the idea. As Ripley I had to stay still in the pod with the breather mask on," the actress admitted. "They filmed me full-on with my face as Rebecca Jorden, and there was some discussion about the future potential of the character to be continued in other crossover movies, along with my possible involvement with that if they decided to go with that ending."
Despite the fantastical ideas and concepts seen throughout both the Predator and Alien franchises, both series keep a relatively consistent canon, with Watkins addressing how Newt's death between the events of Aliens and Alien 3 could have caused contradictions for The Predator.
"There was no direct discussion of Alien 3 to me and how it would fit into continuity, but the backstory given to me did go quite deep into explaining how and why these characters could turn up at the end of The Predator, specifically due to events happening in the future," Watkins pointed out. "Speaking from my own personal opinion I really wish they hadn't killed off Newt in Alien 3… it was heartbreaking for me and I know many others share this opinion as well. James Cameron's Aliens is by far my favorite movie of the franchise and my second favorite movie of all time."
A new Predator film is being developed by 10 Cloverfield Lane director Dan Trachtenberg while Noah Hawley is developing an Alien series for Hulu.
Do you wish the film had used any of these scenes? Let us know in the comments below or contact Patrick Cavanaugh directly on Twitter to talk all things horror and Star Wars.