Brian A. Prince & Kyle Strauts Interview

Posted by Darkness on December 19, 2019 (Updated: 10-Sep-2023)

 Brian A. Prince & Kyle Strauts Interview

Genetically-Created Creature.

Aaron: Could you elaborate a bit more on the unique sort of stuff? What was in there that had not been done before?

Kyle: I think in the original script because people were looking like “Oh why don’t they have shoulder cannons”. I think they actually got knocked off and their first iteration coming to Earth and so what they were fighting with more of their traditional weapons like the things that fire out of their arm. The wires and the blades and all that kind of stuff and then they were using whatever was around which was the human weapons and there was a scene where I come out of the turret. I actually shot the 50 caliber turret which was actually one of the coolest things I’ve ever done in my life. They put actual 50 Cal shells in it.

They were essentially working together to take out the Upgrade. This upgrade was so badass that the Predators – the team up with the humans because he had all these crazy beasts like hunting animals with them. They showed the dogs but they had some other stuff that they were genetically creating. It was like a back-and-forth but they were spicing these things to be hunting animals that this Predator would bring with him to hunt these rebel Predators. So there was like this full-on war that was happening in these scenes where the Emissaries were… like I shot a 50 Cal and then I think Brian at one point shot a [M240] out the front and I pick up a gun I dropped –  an M240 and I turn and just go “POP! POP! POP!”

While the vehicle is driving mind you and I was just ripping at this thing flying through the trees and then turning around while this thing jumps on Coyle and taking my blades out and just stabbing it in the brain. It was stuff that Predator fans would have loved to see. It was really violent. All that character work that we put into the training was coming out in the Emissary guys. It was a large exhale to let that go because of how much the whole team put into making these scenes as cool as possible.

Adam: You had mentioned that you don’t remember it ever being called the Fugitive Predator as a nickname until you saw that online? Were there other nicknames that it was called on set?

Brian: On the call sheets, it was just Predator 1 and then Upgrade and then it was Emissary 1, Emissary 2. So, I didn’t know what they were gonna call the Fugitive one and then online people were like “Oh I love the Fugitive Predator”. I was like “Oh that’s cool”.

Aaron: That came from a company who made the figures. He was called the Fugitive and then the Upgrade was called the Assassin. So, speaking of the Assassin, I was just wondering if either of you knew if ADI or Shane Black had experimented with doing any practical suits for the Upgrade Predator or was it always gonna be still some mocap and CG?

Brian: I personally don’t know. I think it was always supposed to be CG. There was a really cool proxy like stand in maquette. That thing was really cool.

Kyle: I remember Shane’s first note. He did a little speech at the studio and he said “I really want this to be… like I make films. I make them like a family and everyone working, we work together. We trust each other and I really want to bring this franchise back and be as practical as possible”. So, he wanted to use everything in his power to make every effect he could practical but for the way the Fugitive was written, it was almost impossible to get it. There’s no 12-foot humans. Even on the stilts you couldn’t be very precise with how you moved so he said he wanted a person in it to do the proxy for most of the work but when the Fugitive would do something crazy like sprint, he had to CG that.

 Brian A. Prince & Kyle Strauts Interview

Brian:  Props to T.J. Storm. He was one of the other motion capture artists that did a lot of work in post for the Assassin and I wanted to throw his name out there really quick because he’s awesome.

Adam: Just for clarity’s sake, I don’t believe either of you were involved with the major reshoots that took place correct?

Brian: No that’s when I got worried. We heard about eight weeks of reshoots and neither of us were called and I was like “Something’s happening”.

Kyle: Once you’ve finished a job as an actor, you don’t really hear anything on the production side so we were kind of inquiring like “Hey, they’re not calling me for any reshoots” and I was like “Oh, man, what are they reshooting?” Eight weeks. That’s a sizable chunk.

Brian: The only reshoot I did – they flew me to LA for one day and I did a bunch of promo shoots. So, if you see like a lot of the social media marketing where it’s like kind of shots of the Fugitive and he’s like kind of posing, more like walking intimidatingly. We did a lot of that in LA in a single day. That was really fun.

Adam: You both attended the LA premiere of the film on the 12th. Now that you’ve had a chance to see the finished film, what did you think of it?

Brian: It’s really hard to say honestly cuz I enjoyed it. A lot of fun watching it. It’s definitely like a really fun time and kinetic film but because we’re so ingrained with it, I was there from prep to the end. I was on set the entire time. I read the script three or four times and then what came out was… it was more or less a different film. I mean a lot of the elements were similar but like there were whole entire characters that were gone. There were whole entire sequences that were gone. There were things that linked to other things that had now just weren’t linked to anything. I’m not trying to be funny. Like no I wasn’t disappointed at all.

I mean I was sad that a lot of the stuff we did was taken out so that’s the business but at the same time it’s hard to say because it was a different movie and for what it was I definitely enjoyed it but I’ll always know what was going to be and it’s hard to not compare it to that. Do you know what I mean? I definitely enjoyed the film a lot. I had a lot of fun. My mom – she enjoyed it. I brought her to the premiere with me and part of me will always be like “Oh I want to see” and then there’s like the tiniest of pet peeves for me personally.

It’s like I went to school for visual storytelling. I can’t not film and think about the story of it. There’s this bit that they took out probably for time sake and I totally understand but they took out this clip where they show where they got the RV from. The Loonies have that RV. It’s a really fun scene and it makes the RV feel like this whole character but I get it. Like I’m not trying to say I could have done that job better. Nothing like that at all.

Aaron: Just for our listeners and so it makes sense and so you guys can tell me if it’s on par with what I’m saying. In the novelization for The Predator, they have the RV as having won it in a poker game with the bikers at the motel. It was like a weapon dealer or something who owned the RV and that’s why it was all stocked up?

Kyle: They opened the cabinets and guns were just falling out. That really gave his character… I felt like that scene missing took away from Alfie’s character. Because he learned a bunch of crazy card tricks for the film. He trained with some master card magician and learned a bunch of these things with Carlos and ended up smoking the guy. Yeah I really felt like that brought a lot to his character and that was a really fun scene that I completely agree with Brian is that some of the scenes that disappeared were like the connective tissue that explained who these characters were and where they came from and like what they were about.

 Brian A. Prince & Kyle Strauts Interview

Deleted Scene with Lynch

So, I’m just gonna tie onto that cuz I don’t need to say my whole opinion on it. It was a lot and it was a different film in the end and what we started which is that I said, could be probably true for a lot of filmmaking. I was more focused on “We do the job we were hired for” so as I was watching, I was really looking “Did we fulfil what they wanted from the characters of the Predators” and I would say. So, I was satisfied that we brought characters to the screen. The rest is out of our control so I’m just kind of okay, that’s filmmaking. Let’s go. I had a good time. Everyone else had a good time. We did some cool character stuff.

Aaron: You’ll find that your guys’ sort of performances is something that’s been quite universally praised when it comes to the film. All other issues aside editing and whatever. So aside from the Emissary Predators, was there any footage of you guys specifically that ended up on the Edit Bay floor?

Brian: Honestly most of it made it in from what I did. The running made it in which I was really stoked about. That was really hard. It was the scene where I ran in front of the bus. There was a little tiny parkour, little vault I did in the lab escape sequence that got cut out but it probably didn’t sell but apart from that though, I’m stoked with everything else that made it in personally.

Kyle: I loved Brian’s performance. There was a cool little story attached to it where Lance, the stunt coordinator, gave us kind of an opportunity to do some like visualizing for the lab escape scene where he comes around the corner and this comes back to that acting thing where I’m like “Yeah we picked up a human gun. We wouldn’t react like a human cuz we’re this massive Predator and we have so much mass – the gun would almost be like a toy to us.

 Brian A. Prince & Kyle Strauts Interview

Fugitive Predator

We pick it up. We shoot it and toss it aside” and when I saw how good it looked on film when Brian came around the corner and he’s like escaping and walking like he doesn’t give a shit. He slays the guy, picks up his gun and the way he swept his arm and shot the guys and then pretty much let go of the gun in the same swing. Probably one of the most direct training to final product moments because we were like “Yeah we want these little details to be real. Like look we don’t shake when he shoots again. He just tosses aside, smashes the glass. He’s not gonna sit there and finick with like trying to shoot tactically. It’s not his weaponry”. So that was really cool to see.

Aaron: Could you feel the recoil in the suits?

Brian: That one particularly that I whip up – that one was a prop gun but when we shot the big ones like the M240 and the 50 Cal had the recoil. I’m gonna give a lot of props to Kyle. Actually, so he’s like walking around holding the M240 and it’s a heavy gun man. He’s in the suit so he has to look like “Oh no this is light” but to hold heavy and then try to like play it off – that’s really difficult.

Aaron: So, Brian, when you’re not dressing up and slaughtering folk, you keep busy with art. Would you ever want to work with Dark Horse on a Predator comic illustrating?

Brian: That’s a tough question. Predators are hard to draw man. I don’t know. No that would actually be really cool. I would totally love to do something like that in the future especially when my plate clears up right now. This graphic novel is taking up all of my time but no definitely one day, I would love to do like a little Predator like mini comic or something like that but the thing is it’s like I’m so weird that like I wouldn’t even want to do like a… like no one would want to read my Predator comic because it’d be like a sitcom or something with the Predator being like “Oh man I’m out of milk, I need to get some milk”.

Adam: Now that it’s all said and done would either of you like to return someday and portray the Predator in another film?

Kyle: Oh yeah, I’d love to get a chance to work in with Brian because like that was just the start of what we can create now. Seeing what is possible. Oh my god. I would love to come back and play.

Brian: Yeah, I feel the same way. It’s like a definite yes. Like for as much as we like to explain to people how like difficult and taxing certain things were, it’s just like it was so fulfilling of an experience and I’d say yes in literally a second if somebody asked me to do it.

Adam: So just before we finish, was there anything you guys don’t want to share? Any anecdotes or anything that we haven’t given you the opportunity to say?

Brian: Yeah, I want to say two more things. One I wanted to give a special super awesome shoutout to the Predator special effects makeup team. Heather [Tillson], Mike [Larrabee], Tibor [Farkas], Geoff [Redknap] and there were others too that came and just they were the ones that helped us get dressed. They were the ones that kept us hydrated. Mike would paint the suit every day to keep it looking pretty and they just seriously were kind of like the ones that kind of kept us going and I really can’t thank them enough because it’s a team effort. Like yeah, they were definitely part of it and then obviously special thanks to like the stunt team and the crew. Especially the crew. It’s a huge ship of people that worked on this thing and everybody deserves to get the credit for it.

Kyle: I couldn’t really say anything more than that. I really would like to double up that our special effects team not only did they keep the suit intact but they kept our minds intact. When we needed someone to go to bat for us, to make sure we were having our needs met it was people like Mike and Geoff. They were they’re always there no matter what to make sure that we were as comfortable we could be to do our jobs and the whole crew too. Like there wasn’t one person I met on that set that wasn’t stoked to be there. So as much as I’d like to say yeah everyone kills their performances. It’s a team effort and it only can become something amazing with the team effort.

You can find Kyle Strauts on Twitter @geno604 and on Instagram @actorkylestrauts. Brian A. Prince can be found on Twitter @thebaprince and Instagram @thebaprince.

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