Director Dan Trachtenberg, Comanche Producer Jhane Myers discuss Predator film “Prey”

“This predator is like my fifth child,” says Comanche producer Jhane Myers. While Trachtenberg says, he first considered a younger Predator, but realized the David and Goliath story was more fitting

As previously reported in Native Viewpoint, Prey, to be released on HULU on August 5, will release an English and Comanche Nation language-dubbed version, period-accurate regalia, and Native lead actors Amber Midthunder and Dakota Beavers. 

The film was directed by Dan Trachtenberg and executive produced by Comanche Nation citizen Jhane Myers. In an interview with Native Viewpoint editor, Vincent Schilling hears from Trachtenberg on how he first considered a younger predator and how Jhane Myers, a producer and Comanche citizen, ensured the legitimacy of Comanche culture, even though the film is a science fiction thriller.

Prey, set in the Comanche Nation 300 years ago, features Amber Midthunder (The Ice Road, Roswell, New Mexico) as Naru, a skilled female warrior seeking to prove herself to her tribe, including her brother Dakota Beavers, a musician and acting newcomer to the film industry that portrays the character Taabe.

Watch the interview here:

Details given to me from Disney / HULU about the cast and a summary of the film (These notes come directly from the press materials)

An all-new action-thriller from 20th Century Studios directed by Dan Trachtenberg (“The Boys,” “10 Cloverfield Lane”), “Prey” is the latest entry in the “Predator” franchise. The film will stream August 5, 2022, as a Hulu Original in the U.S., Star+ in Latin America, and Disney+ under the Star banner in all other territories.

Set in the Comanche Nation 300 years ago, “Prey” is the story of a young woman, Naru, a fierce and highly skilled warrior. She has been raised in the shadow of some of the most legendary hunters who roam the Great Plains, so she sets out to prove herself a worthy hunter when danger threatens her camp. The prey she stalks and ultimately confronts turns out to be a highly evolved alien Predator with a technically advanced arsenal, resulting in a vicious and terrifying showdown between the two adversaries.

Amber Midthunder as Naru in 20th Century Studios' PREY, exclusively on Hulu. Photo courtesy of 20th Century Studios. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.
Amber Midthunder as Naru in 20th Century Studios’ PREY, exclusively on Hulu. Photo courtesy of 20th Century Studios. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.

Cast and crew

“Prey” stars Amber Midthunder (“The Ice Road,” “Roswell, New Mexico”), newcomer Dakota Beavers, Stormee Kipp (“Sooyii”), Michelle Thrush (“The Journey Home”), Julian Black Antelope (“Tribal”), and Dane DiLiegro (“American Horror Stories”) as the Predator. The film is directed by Dan Trachtenberg and written by Patrick Aison (“Jack Ryan,” “Treadstone”), with a story by Patrick Aison & Dan Trachtenberg based on characters created by Jim Thomas & John Thomas. It is produced by John Davis (“Jungle Cruise,” “Predator”), Jhane Myers (“Monsters of God”), and Marty Ewing (“It: Chapter Two”), with Lawrence Gordon (“Watchmen”), Ben Rosenblatt (“Snowpiercer”), James E. Thomas, John C. Thomas, and Marc Toberoff (“Fantasy Island”) serving as executive producers.

(L-R): Cody Big Tobacco as Ania, Harlan Kywayhat as Itsee, Stormee Kipp as Wasape, Dakota Beavers as Taabe, and Amber Midthunder as Naru in 20th Century Studios' PREY, exclusively on Hulu. Photo courtesy of 20th Century Studios. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.
(L-R): Cody Big Tobacco as Ania, Harlan Kywayhat as Itsee, Stormee Kipp as Wasape, Dakota Beavers as Taabe, and Amber Midthunder as Naru in 20th Century Studios’ PREY, exclusively on Hulu. Photo courtesy of 20th Century Studios. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.

The “Predator” franchise began with the 1987 film starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and directed by John McTiernan. The story of an elite team of mercenaries sent to the jungles of South America on a recovery mission who find themselves hunted by an extraterrestrial warrior with an arsenal of high-tech weapons, the film was a hit and spawned five subsequent films.

Production quotes

Director Dan Trachtenberg was a big fan of the original film. “I was in third grade when the first one came out, and I have a very vivid memory of not being allowed to see the movie and being in the car on the way to a karate tournament with all the boys who had all just seen the film and described the entire movie to me on the way to the tournament,” he explains.

He continues, “One of the things that stuck out as they described it to me was a scene where Billy, the Native American scout, stood his ground on a bridge over a waterfall and fought the Predator. Eventually, when I saw the movie, that scene didn’t happen. He cuts himself and then screams, and it’s all off-camera. That bit that I had imagined wasn’t actually in the movie but is very much the genesis of this movie, ‘Prey,’ now.”

Producer Jhane Myers, Comanche and Blackfeet, agrees. “The fact that I’ve been able to work on this film…it’s amazing to me. And more importantly, when I saw the very first film — I would have never thought that I, as a full-blooded Native American and enrolled Comanche — my culture could ever collide with such a franchise in a film.”

See related: ‘Prey’ is the Predator vs. Comanche warriors: Why it’s a huge Native deal


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