The Predator Prequel That Can Redeem Franchise Best Character

By TeeJay Small | Published

laurence fishburne predators

When Prey premiered on Hulu in 2022, it shifted the future of the Predator film franchise, with the next films in the canon expected to cover Yautja Predators arriving on Earth over the course of several different eras throughout human history. While this is undoubtedly a cool exploration of the lore of the iconic movie monsters, it ignores the possibility of the best Predator prequel that never was. A prequel centered on Laurence Fishburne’s short-lived character in the 2010 film Predators, if done right, would be the coolest film in the entire franchise, bar none.

Fishburne’s Roland Is A Surprise

When Laurence Fishburne shows up in Predators, his arrival is a major surprise, both to the audience and the survivors of the alien hunting ground. The film centers on a group of killers with various skills and backgrounds, who each serve as the most dangerous game for Yautja hunters on a foreign game-preserve planet. These killers include black ops mercenaries, serial murderers, gang members, and other violent human beings with abnormally high body counts.

Roland Is Losing It

laurence fishburne predators

After a couple of the main ensemble are picked off by the hunters, they encounter what appears to be another Yautja, only for Laurence Fishburne’s character to reveal that he–a human man–is skulking around the reserve wearing a Predator’s armor. Fishburne takes the survivors to his base of operations, where he reveals that he’s been surviving off of scraps on the reserve planet for over 10 hunting seasons. The rest of the survivors air-dropped onto the planet alongside him have long-since died off, and he is going mad from cabin fever, isolation, and the general insanity of his living situation.

He’s The Closest Thing In The Franchise To A Yautja Expert

laurence fishburne predators

Laurence Fishburne claims to have killed multiple Predators during his time on the foreign planet, which can be corroborated by his use of the Yautja armor. Beyond his skills in stealth and combat, Fishburne’s character seems to have the most hands-on training and best understanding of Predator technology of any human being in history. He also has an acute understanding of the Yautja culture, after observing their interactions from afar for so long.

All of this makes Laurence Fishburne the universe’s foremost authority on all things Predators, though he ultimately dies shortly after showing up in the movie. While his death scene is one of the best moments in Predators, it seems like a major missed opportunity to not show more of him in the film.

There’s A Lot We Don’t Know

All this is to say, a Predators prequel that centers on Laurence Fishburne’s time on the planet, slowly coming to learn the ins and outs of the Predators’ tech and culture, would be the perfect inclusion in the long-running film franchise. Additionally, the 2010 film ends on a major cliffhanger, with Adrien Brody and Alice Braga’s characters essentially taking Fishburne’s place as survivors of the hunt on the mysterious planet, so there’s a lot of unexplored terrain still left in this corner of the franchise.

Predators Shouldn’t Be Forgotten

While the film seems to have been ignored by the overall Predator canon at this point, a Laurence Fishburne Predators prequel could provide filmmakers with a number of exciting opportunities to explore the lore of the alien hunters. Even if new installments such as Prey 2 don’t explicitly follow-up on the loose threads of Predators, maybe there’s a way that they can be addressed in an offhand comment.