Predators pack a punch

interview Lead actor Adrien Brody offers a peek into the new world of Predators

F ear is reborn at the hands of producer Robert Rodriguez and director Nimrod Antal with Predators returning to fight seven of the world's most dangerous killers in a deadly match staged on an alien planet. As the film hits the theatres today, lead actor Adrien Brody talks about his role in the film and what makes it a must-watch for action fans.

What got you excited about being part of Predators?

I loved the original Predator. I remember watching it with my friends when I was a kid and how exciting it was to be in a theatre. I love sci-fi horror movies. Besides, I always wanted to explore this genre and move away from the comedy and drama films I was doing.

Can you talk about your character Royce? Are you similar to him in real life?

Royce is a complicated guy. He's someone who's done everything in his power to shed emotional attachment to things... the antithesis of me. I'm a very emotional person and I think it's an interesting way of viewing the world from an opposite perspective. But, deep down within him, there still lurks the human being. He's a survivor, and ultimately, just like a scientist, there has to be a level of detachment in order to put survival first. And I think that makes him well suited for the circumstances he's found himself in.

How did you prepare for the role?

I approached it with the kind of focus I would approach any of the roles given to me. My intention was to delve into the mind of the flawed tragic hero. I did put on a substantial amount of muscle mass for the role — the physical training was a big part of the preparation, but it was also important to prepare psychologically. We shot in Hawaii and in thousands of acres of tropical rainforest. I had got permission from the owners of the estate to stay in the property... I didn't stay in a hotel. Instead, I isolated myself. My nightly ritual was poring over survival manuals and military and paramilitary training books. I was reading Sun Tzu. I was studying meditation. I was on a strict diet. I wasn't drinking. I wasn't eating sugar. I had to kind of go there, because for me, this was a tremendous opportunity.

Why do storytellers keep coming back to the Predator as an antagonist worth exploring?

The Predator is such an enduring character. People still love it. I knew there was something about it in a primal way. Because it's somewhat humanoid, you can identify with it. It has human characteristics, which draw people to it.

Are you disappointed at some of the places the brand has gone in recent years?

Well, it's not recent. It has been over a 20-year period. You don't need me to tell you that they strayed a bit from the raw intensity the first film had. But this becomes an opportunity to spiritually come back to that and, hopefully, even elevate the material.

What do you think Nimrod brings to this film that wasn't there in the original one?

Well, it's hard to say. I don't know what vibe was there when they were shooting. It was a very different time, but Nim has got great enthusiasm. And you know he is very passionate about this. This really means a lot to him and I think his excitement helps motivate everyone else.

How has it been working with Laurence Fishburne?

Fish is amazing. He's so cool. Telling war stories from Apocalypse Now, it was great. He brought such wonderful energy to the film. I think people will get a kick out of that. Some choices Fish had made gave me an opportunity to improvise and they were cracking up. I hope they are not taken out of the picture. Let's see.

The beauty of this genre is experiencing the unexpected as an audience. Now, we have nuances to explore in that this ensemble of killers in Predators consists of equally powerful people fighting through a dark world. So, who really is the predator in this case?

I can speak about my character more than the others, but we are all predators, so to speak. We've succumbed to a cold-hearted way of living and a certain kind of ruthlessness. My character is ultimately survivalist. Royce's priority is to make it under any circumstances. It's about a man who has sacrificed humanity. So it's interesting that you say you find humanity in the story. There has to be a certain degree of that, but this is the least human character I have played. He's not purely based on instinct, but he has managed to suppress the qualities that make us human beings for the most part.

Predators opens in theatres on August 6 in English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.

The Predator is such an enduring character. It's somewhat humanoid, you can identify with it

Recommended for you