Fans of the Predator franchise are looking forward to Shane Black’s take on the franchise next year, Unfortunately, they’re going to have to wait longer than we originally thought. The film was originally set to open in February of 2018, however, news has recently hit that the movie has had its release pushed back to that summer. One Predator fan expressed some concern to director Shane Black on Twitter that the delay was a bad sign, however, Black responded that he was entirely in favor of the delay and that it was a net positive for the film overall, as it moved the movie to a period where the box office competition would be less fierce. According to Black…
I endorsed this entirely. It’s a great thing — also, a bit of a relief not to open against Marvel’s Black Panther in February.
The new release date for The Predator is August 3, 2018. No specific reason was given for the change so it’s not clear if the movie is going to need that extra time to be completed, or if the studio simply thought the film would perform better in that slot. Certainly, as Shane Black points out, not opening against a Marvel movie is likely a good thing. Previously, The Predator was set for a February 9 release in 2018 with Black Panther opening the following Friday on February 16. While Black Panther will still be a new Marvel property, and it will be opening outside of the traditional summer window, the movie is certainly expected to do some big business, likely only giving The Predator one decent weekend to make any money.
On the other hand, August of 2018 is a pretty wide open period. As summer movies more and more begin to shift into May, and even April, they’ve tended to leave August alone, which potentially leaves the month open for one movie to do gangbuster business. Last summer Suicide Squad was number one for three straight weeks at the box office, opening in the same early August spot, and while the DC movie was certainly going to do well either way, the fact that it had no serious competition certainly helped. The Predator may be looking for a similar bump.
Currently, the only other films set for release that weekend are Will Ferrell’s Sherlock comedy Holmes and Watson, and an untitled live-action Disney movie, which, considering the fact that no movie has yet been put in that slot, may end up going unused entirely. Though with the track record of Disney, any announcement in that slot could cause the studio to rethink the weekend again.
While the mere concept of Shane Black directing a Predator movie has us excited, we’ll survive waiting for the film if it means that the end result will be better. We certainly don’t want to see the movie crushed by another blockbuster if the film is good enough to be a hit in its own right.