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AvP Set Reports Reviewed

Over the last couple of days, I’ve been writing an article on all the Alien vs Predator set reports with reviews of all eight reports. These include IGN, JoBlo’s Movie Emporium, CHUD, ComingSoon, Sci-Fi London, Lance Henriksen Magic, Fabien’s & SuicideSquad’s set reports. If anybody missed the set reports at the end of December and in January/February, now’s your chance to catch up on them. View them on the next page.

IGN FilmForce

17th December 2003: IGN FilmForce recently went to Prague to visit the set of Alien vs Predator the movie and has published Part 1 featuring an interview with none other than the Alien vs Predator movie director, Paul Anderson and Part 2 features John Bruno on the special effects.
Discussed Spoilers: AvP in the Alien / Predator timeline; Why Alien / Predator worked so well; CGI effects in the film; Predator vision; Upcoming trailer; CG weaponry; Final AvP sequence.

“One of the things that make Alien and Aliens and the first Predator movie work so well is that fact that the filmmakers deliberately held back the creatures for as long as possible. Whether intentionally or not, that’s what they did and that’s why I think those movies work so well. You don’t see a Predator until 58 minutes into the first movie. You get a hint of Predator-vision but you don’t see one until about an hour into the film. The same with Alien. You don’t see the face hugger come out of the egg until 45 minutes into the film. In the Director’s Cut of Aliens, you don’t have that big battle until an hour and 10 minutes into the film. I think those movies benefited from the fact that they just made the audience wait a little bit.”

My Score: 5/5
The interview with John Bruno is what really puts IGN’s set report in the spotlight. He discusses some fantastic scenes and special effects what are going to be included in the film and the Paul Anderson interview shows that the director is more than 100% behind this film. This is must-see set report for any Alien vs Predator fan. Go read it now if you haven’t.

JoBlo’s Movie Emporium

18th December 2003: JoBlo’s Movie Emporium have published a long and interesting article of their trip to Prague to go behind-the-scenes on the Alien vs Predator movie. Part 1 features information on the plot, cast, and detailed info on two of the scenes they witnessed. Part 2 features an interview with Paul Anderson, and Part 3 features an interview with four of the cast members.
Discussed Spoilers: The plot; The characters; Locations in AvP – Antarctica, Pyramid, Predator Spaceship; Creature design; Weaponry; More Practical Effects; Inside the pyramid chambers; Lance Henriksen; Upcoming Predator video game; The online featurette; Film certificate; Running time; More on character profiles;

“During our two-day stay we were privy to seeing them shoot a couple of scenes from the film. They’ve built all the inner chambers of the pyramid in a large studio. Again, I’ll have to describe them as best I can since taking pictures was strictly forbidden. Or did I mention that already? The first scene gave us an opportunity to see a nice kill by the main predator himself. Picture him atop the upper walls of the Fight Chamber whipping one of his ceremonial spears at one of the security team members (no big secret here, you knew some of these guys were gonna die). I was most impressed by the sheer size of the predator MOFO. He’s truly a magnificent figure to watch. So, anyway, the poor guy takes it in the chest as a last few desperate shots are fired at the predator…in vain. The whole shot will probably take 5-10 seconds of screen time. Still, it was pretty nifty to see the legendary killer in action.”

My Score: 4/5
JoBlo’s Movie Emporium is another website that dives deeper into the plot and characters. The site extends upon the IGN Paul Anderson interview and the AvP director gives us an interesting insight into the movie. Moreover, he lets slip about the upcoming Predator game for PS2 and X-Box and hints at the film’s certificate and running time. Part 3 of the set report doesn’t really go into too much detail about the film and instead concentrates on the four actors.

CHUD

21st December 2003: Cinematic Happenings Under Development have published three interviews with cast and crew of the Alien vs Predator movie. They’ve been to the set of Alien vs Predator and interviewed director Paul Anderson, Lance Henriksen, Alec Gillis & Tom Woodruff. Part 1 features Paul Anderson, Part 2 features Lance Henriksen and Part 3 features Alec Gillis & Tom Woodruff.
Discussed Spoilers: Paul Anderson on AvP (same as IGN interview); Lance Henriksen on AvP – connection to Alien films, Bishop in Alien 3; Predator weaponry; Alien / Predator suits; Animatronics; CGI in Alien Resurrection;

Question: “What about action? Is there a healthy amount of Alien / Predator fighting?”
Anderson: “Yes there is! It’s not from minute 1 to minute 120, because I think that would be a disappointment in itself really. I’m a huge fan of both franchises, but I think everyone would agree there are movies that work better than others within the franchises. One of the things that makes Alien and Aliens and the first Predator work so well is the fact that the filmmakers deliberately held back the creatures for as long as possible. Whether intentionally or not, that’s what they did and that’s why those movies work so well.”

My Score: 3/5
First of all, the Paul Anderson interview is the same transcript of JoBlo’s interview so it doesn’t give us any new spoilers. The Lance Henriksen interview is interesting, nonetheless. It tells us how he feels to be a part of AvP and what he thinks of the two franchises merging together. The highlight of this set report is the interview with Alec Gillis and Tom Woodruff from ADI. They both give some details into the Predator’s weaponry – what’s new, what’s changed and also the creature designs gives us a little encouragement.

ComingSoon

30th December 2003: ComingSoon.net have visited the set and published three parts of their set report. Part 1 gives an overview, Part 2 covers the comics and Part 3 goes over the special effects.
Discussed Spoilers: Plot overview; Alien / Predator costumes; AvP comics; Special effects in film (same as IGN interview).

“The film itself is being shot entirely in Prague (or for you natives on the web: Praha) in several converted sound stages throughout the city. Other cast members include: Ewen Bremner (Black Hawk Down, Trainspotting), Colin Salmon, who some may recognizes as M’s chief of staff in the last three Bond films, the very ire and funny Tommy Flanagan, who played Russell Crowe’s servant in Gladiator, and international actors Joseph Rye, Carsten Norgaard, Sam Troughton and the very sexy Agathe De La Boulaye, round out the cast.”

My Score: 2/5
I have to say, surprisingly, ComingSoon’s report was the weakest out of the lot. Part 1 of the report gives us a basic overview of the movie which is essentially what we already know. Part 2 goes over the comics which has nothing to with the upcoming Alien vs Predator movie and Part 3 is just a straight transcript of IGN’s interview with John Bruno. So the overall report gives no new information about the AvP movie which is surprising considering it’s high-ranking position in movie websites.

Sci-Fi London

16th January 2004: Sci-Fi London also paid a visit to the set.
Discussed Spoilers: Plot overview; Cast overview; locations on the set; PredAlien; Animatronics.

“The scenes that take place in the Antarctic also look amazing and we got to see some of the ”˜whales’ graveyard’ set – it reminded me of the massive ribcages in Pitch Black, eerie in all white though. I was also lucky enough to get some time with the miniatures team who took us over the sets of the whaling station itself. Amazing detail and so great that it will not be done using CG. Lately I have found movies using CG for big effects start too look so unreal, there is something missing.”

My Score: 3/5
This was a late set report from all of the movie websites but still manages to give away a few spoilers. The most interesting comment in the article is the fact that they mention the PredAlien. This is the first real hint of a creature even though they use the word Hybrid rather than PredAlien. Not much is new apart from that they mention a couple of scenes and a lot of people also found out for the first time that Alien vs Predator will premiere in the UK on 22nd October 2004 – that’s nearly 3 months after the American premiere. To be honest, I’m still a bit shocked by this since Fox will lose a lot of money in the international market because of piracy and also because more fans have broadband connections now.

SuicideSquad’s Set Report

2nd February 2004: After winning a competition to go to the AvP Movie set, SuicideSquad has returned from his trip and posted details of his visit in the GameGossip Forums.
Discussed Spoilers: Future Alien / Predator / AvP sequels; Future AvP games; Running Time; Budget; Upcoming Trailers; Alien / Predator designs; Predator self-destruction; Alien Queen; PredAlien; Scenes in the film.

“Next we went inside of the old factory and it was separate in two parts. one half was completely empty, only some chairs and monitors were there for our group. on the other side there were a great set, an ice cave. What we actually saw, was a predator attacked from behind by an alien, while the aliens tail hits Lex (Sanaa Lathan) and she falls. the second scene was Lex discovering some alien slime. all I say here is: it looked great…”

My Score: 4/5
I was a bit apprehensive towards this report when I first read it because it contains the most spoilers out of all the set reports and it was first posted on a forum rather than a movie website. We all know forums are not the best sources for facts. Even so, the author, SuicideSquad, is telling the truth that he went to the set and the author of the report below backs that up. The first spoiler is the fact that there will be no Alien 5 or Predator 3 if AvP is successful yet they will consider it if AvP isn’t a success. In my view, I don’t think Fox would entirely rule out Alien 5 although I do prefer the the AvP franchise to continue rather than the Alien / Predator franchises. This comment is backed up by Lance Henriksen Magic’s Set Visit.

The next comment is about future games and I’m in disbelief that Fox is not considering AvP3 for a very long time. Yet a “Predator” game is in production for PS2 and X-box consoles due out this Christmas. Considering the AvP audience wants AvP3 instead of these spin-off games such as the unnamed Predator title and AvP Extinction which are for consoles rather than PC. This is not concrete confirmation that AvP3 won’t be made since no-one on the AvP set are strongly connected to Fox Interactive.

The next big spoiler is that an Alien Queen will make an appearance which wasn’t mentioned at all in any of the previous set reports. This is quite exciting in view of the fact that Alien vs Predator is going to be filled with everything that made Alien, Aliens and Predator so amazing to watch. More spoilers are given about the scenes etc. I would have probably given this report the full five stars if it had been posted on a movie website with pictures and proper sentences rather than in a forum.

Fabien’s Set Report

9th February 2004: Another competition winner, Fabien, who was in the same group as SuicideSquad has posted his report on AvPGalaxy.
Discussed Spoilers: Scenes in the film – Predators, Alien Eggs, Alien Queen; PredAlien; Description of a final scene with Lex; Bishop in Alien 3; Tour of the set.

“The pyramid isn’t a ruin and is always in activity (since the millennia). The Predators have visited there in prehistory and its one of their holy places so that the Aliens cannot leave. The Predators have never abandoned their visit to our planet – they are much more discreet about it since the first incident in Mexico 5000 years ago. When we entered the studio, we were checked to see if we had mobile phones or cameras. Then Paul Anderson made an appearance (he was very busy and left quickly). The film is practically finished and we attended the shooting of the last battle scene…”

My Score: 3/5
Fabien’s set report was another well put-together set report and included images of his trip to Prague which none of the other set reports gave apart from Lance Henriksen Magic. New information about the history of the Predators are revealed and one of the scenes he witnessed is described in great detail. There’s another mention of the Alien Queen so I think we’re bound to see that in the film. There’s another mention of the PredAlien but again, it’s not concrete information.

Lance Henriksen Magic

15th February 2004: Over at Lance Henriksen Magic, they’ve finally published one of their interviews they had with Lance Henriksen and discuss his role in the Alien vs Predator movie. The First Transcript covers AvP whereas the other and forthcoming transcripts cover his other films.
Discussed Spoilers: Special effects; Future Alien / Predator films; Lance’s character.

“At this point Geoff Freeman, the unit publicist on the AvP set confirmed that assuming AvP is a success it will kill off the other franchises. This means there will be no Alien 5 or further predator movies, the two franchises will be channelled into sequels to Alien vs. Predator and beyond.”

My Score: 3/5
This is another well presented set report with images of her trip and Lance Henriksen Magic was the first website to post the second production still for Alien vs Predator. There is some new stuff in the report and Lance Henriksen talks about the criticism Paul Anderson has received over the past few months. The other major pointer of the report is they also mention Alien 5 and Predator 3 won’t be made so this backs up what SuicideSquad said in his report.



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Comments: 3
  1. Broken Tusk
    This movie is going to be the epitome of ass-kicking. Plus, it will be the turning point in director Paul Anderson's career.   Even James Cameron has one or two bad movies under his belt. (Pirahna II: The Spawning and Titanic, anyone?)
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