PREDATOR: Fixing the Creature - Robert Short Productions & John McTiernan

Started by Voodoo Magic, Jun 18, 2019, 04:56:11 PM

PREDATOR: Fixing the Creature - Robert Short Productions & John McTiernan (Read 11,201 times)

Voodoo Magic

Voodoo Magic

After the first Boss Film Studio Predator:

And before the final Stan Winston Studio Predator:

There was Director John McTiernan:

And the lesser known, yet very instrumental, Robert Short:

His company Robert Short Productions (with the important input of director John McTiernan) helped redesign the Predator into the iconic creature that is celebrated today, so much so, that this deserves its own thread.

Most fans know the filming of Predator was shut down for months to allow time to fix the creature's look, and during that time Robert Short met with director John McTiernan to fix the Predator.

First Fix
Originally they planned on a quick fix, covering the existing Boss Film Studio Predator suit with a more imposing armored space suit but the idea was quickly rejected.

Meanwhile at Fox
As another quick fix, Fox briefly considered replacing the Predator with an actual Alien original FX suit, but with a brand new paint job plus modifications. Luckily this idea was rejected too.

Second Fix
It was soon realized by the powers that be at Fox that a total new Predator design was needed. What Robert Short Productions created was a creature that could walk on all four legs, which was later developed with long creepy mandibles.

Director John McTiernan was still not satisfied
John McTiernan liked the mandibles but was not thrilled with the animalistic approach with the Predator. John wanted an alien that looked more intelligent and advanced.

Then John brought in an illustration of a Maasai Warrior by artist George Jensen for inspiration:

Third Fix:
Using the Maasai Warrior painting as inspiration, the goal became to create a tribal, retro-futuristic hunter. This new Predator design included a new combination of mandibles, dreads, neck piece, footwear, helmet and armor designs, much that carried over to the Stan Winston Studio's final Predator design we know today.

All this was hung up in Producer Joel Silver's office and became the foundation for Stan's final Predator creation and enhancements:

So remember to give Stan Winston Studio credit, but not all of the credit! Be sure to thank Robert Short and John McTiernan too!

Voodoo Magic


This is super fascinating to see the steps of the design process. I remember hearing about the Masai warrior inspiration before, but never actually saw the picture!

Voodoo Magic

Yeah it really is a wonderful painting!


Wow i never saw that before, really interesting, i dont dislike the old design but you cant beat Stan Winston, thanks for sharing.

Voodoo Magic

You're quite welcome! This isn't widely known so I'm happy to share it! :)


Start a blog already, the online Predator fandom seems to lack a place for these interesting, neat niche deep-dives.

Voodoo Magic

Quote from: SiL on Jun 19, 2019, 02:02:40 AM
Start a blog already, the online Predator fandom seems to lack a place for these interesting, neat niche deep-dives.

Hmm. Good advice SiL, if I'm willing to maintain the commitment. I will definitely consider it!


I didn't know that an original (heavily modified) ALIEN suit was considered at one point.

The Old One

The Old One




Whoa! I've always given all of the credits to Stan so it's really eye-opening to know about someone's else contribution to the iconic design.

Great job, Voodoo!



Great thread.

Voodoo Magic

Thanks. I'm just a spreader of information that doesn't get much play. These artists get the real thanks!

I'm just glad Arnold had to go off and shoot The Running Man which allotted more time than usual to get the Predator right! It's amazing to ponder how wrong this movie could have turned out.



Lightning in a bottle.

Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube RSS Feed