Jesse Ventura was delighted to find out from the wardrobe department that his arms were one inch bigger than Arnold Schwarzenegger's. He suggested to Schwarzenegger that they measure arms, with the winner getting a bottle of champagne. Ventura lost, because Schwarzenegger had told the wardrobe department to tell Ventura that his arms were bigger.
The film provided a variety of hardships for the actors, such as leeches, snakes, stifling humidity, heat, and rough terrain. All of the night scenes were filmed during freezing cold temperatures, which was especially hard on Arnold Schwarzenegger during the latter half of the film, when the mud he had to wear (actually pottery clay) became cold and wet. He was warned it would take his body temperature down a few degrees, and he shivered non-stop, even when they tried to heat him with lamps (it just made the clay dry out). He tried drinking jagertee, a schnapps mixture, to warm him, but that just got him drunk.
After Dutch impales a bad guy against a wooden post with his machete, he utters the immortal one-liner "Stick around!" This was apparently improvised by Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Arnold Schwarzenegger recommended Jesse Ventura for Blain, after interviewing him for the role. He thought he looked the part, was big enough, had a deep voice, and was manly.
Jean-Claude Van Damme was originally cast to play the Predator, the idea being that the physical action star would use his martial arts to make the Predator an agile, ninja-Raquel Hunter. He was dropped for being too short, at 5'9"(Arnold Schwarzenegger and his team are bodybuilders who are between 6'2" and 6'5"). Additionally, it was reported that Van Damme constantly complained about the monster suit being too hot, causing him to pass out. He also had allegedly voiced his reservations on numerous occasions regarding the fact he would not be appearing on camera without the suit. Additionally the original design for the Predator was felt to be too cumbersome and difficult to manage in the jungle and, even with a more imposing actor was felt to not provoke enough fear. Van Damme was removed from the film and replaced by Kevin Peter Hall.
The original concept for this film originated as a joke. Someone said that the only person Rocky Balboa had yet to fight, was E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982).
Peter Cullen was reluctant to take the job of voicing the Predator, as he injured his throat playing the title character of King Kong (1976), but eventually accepted, after seeing a picture of the unmasked creature.
According to an interview with Director John McTiernan, the "hole in the jungle" appearance of the Predator was played by Jean-Claude Van Damme in a "bluescreen" (actually red) suit. Van Damme quit after two days, unhappy with being cast as an uncredited special effect, but can be seen as the Predator in If It Bleeds We Can Kill It: The Making of 'Predator' (2001). The alien was scrapped, redesigned, and was eventually played by Kevin Peter Hall who was 7'2" tall.
Most of the cast and crew suffered from traveller's diarrhea, since the Mexican hotel in which they were living was having problems with water purification. The only ones who didn't get sick were Arnold Schwarzenegger and John McTiernan.
The invisibility cloaking effect was achieved with a bright red suit (because it was the farthest opposite of the green of the jungle and the blue of the sky) the size of the Predator. The red was removed with chroma key techniques, leaving an empty area. The take was then repeated without the actors using a 30% wider lens on the camera. When the two takes were combined optically, the jungle from the second take filled in the empty area. Because the second take was filmed with a wider lens, a vague outline of the alien could be seen with the background scenery bending around its shape.
The Predator's blood - a goopy substance with the color of Mountain Dew - was made on-set using a mixture of the liquid from inside glow sticks and KY Jelly.
Arnold Schwarzenegger lost over twenty-five pounds before filming began, in order to better fit the role of a special warfare operative, who would be lean, as well as muscular.
Part of the shoot was forty-eight hours before Arnold Schwarzenegger's wedding rehearsal dinner. Jesse Ventura teased him about his nuptials, often ruining takes; John McTiernan was not amused. Schwarzenegger missed the final preparation, and Maria Shriver was not happy about that, because his mind was more on the film, instead of their wedding.
The Sound Editors called the Predator's shoulder gun, the "Parrot Gun", because when it moved independent of the Predator while aiming, it reminded them of "Peter Sellers with a rubber parrot on his shoulder."
John McTiernan didn't like Puerto Vallarta, because the brown leaves made it look less like a jungle.
Shane Black hated the glasses he was given to wear as Hawkins. He wanted to wear authentic military-issue ballistic glasses, worn by actual troops in the field, but John McTiernan wanted him to look as geeky as possible.
Dutch's line, "Get to the chopper!" is Arnold Schwarzenegger's personal favorite catchphrase of all of his films that he appears.
Carl Weathers joked in an interview that Arnold Schwarzenegger got him addicted to cigar smoking during filming. Arnold, famous for smoking cigars, offered one to Weathers, who initially declined because he was a non-smoker from his pro-football player days, but eventually gave in. Once Weathers had tried it, Arnold gave him an entire box of cigars. Weathers ended this part of the interview by looking to the camera and cheerfully declaring "Shame on you Arnold! Shame on you!"
The famous clicking and gurgling sound the Predator makes throughout the movie was thought up by Peter Cullen. After the producers approached him to give the Predator "a voice", he was taken aback because he had no idea what something like that was suppose to sound like, not to mention that the producers were reluctant to show what the character was finally going to look like. They relented and showed him the design, and Cullen, who thought the Predator creature resembled a "horseshoe crab", remembered as a kid how if you turned one over they would "gurgle", and that became the Predator's "sound".
The Predator was first designed by a special effects company the studio picked to save money. Stan Winston later created the Predator for 1.5 million dollars. This other studio charged half that amount. Because of that, their Predator looked like someone in a lizard suit, with the head of a duck, according to Arnold Schwarzenegger. When Winston was brought in to redesign the Predator, the final fight scene had to be re-shot. The new Predator was 8-1/2 feet tall, but the re-cast Kevin Peter Hall was 7'2". The costume was heavy and off-balance, and Hall couldn't see with the mask on. Because of that, during the fight scene with Dutch, he actually did hit Schwarzenegger once.
In an interview, Carl Weathers said the actors would secretly wake up as early as 3:00 a.m. to work out before the day's shooting. Weathers also stated that he would act as if his physique was naturally given to him, and would work out only after the other actors were nowhere to be seen.
An attempt was made to get shots of the Predator swinging from tree to tree using a monkey in a red special effects suit. However, the monkey kept removing the suit, and the idea was abandoned.
The studio's insurance company would not agree to insure the production unless a bodyguard was hired for Sonny Landham (Billy) - for the sole purpose of protecting people from Sonny. The bodyguard followed Sonny everywhere to ensure he didn't get into a fight, since he was well known to be violent and short tempered.
Hawkins was originally supposed to wear a distinctive red beret, most likely inspired by the U.S. Army's maroon airborne berets, worn by American paratroopers. Shane Black refused to wear it, as he thought it would look ridiculous in the jungle. He later regretted the decision, as he felt it would have made his character stand out.
The weapon that Blain (Jesse Ventura) is using is a minigun. This is a weapon most commonly mounted on the side of a helicopter and many, many modifications had to be made to make it usable in the film. It was powered via an electrical cable hidden down the front of Blain's trousers. The firing rate was slowed down to approximately one-third the normal rate of fire, both to reduce consumption of blanks, and to make the spinning of the barrels visible on film. It is rumored that Ventura had to wear a bulletproof vest, because of the forceful ejection of spent cartridges, but this is false. Unmodified miniguns eject out of the bottom, with the cases essentially falling out, due to gravity. Close examination of the film, especially the scene in which Mac fires the minigun at the fleeing predator, along with the other commandos, show that the ejection of the minigun was not changed.
The machete weighed twenty pounds. The crew came up with the idea to throw it, so Arnold Schwarzenegger wouldn't have to carry it anymore.
Kevin Peter Hall stated in an interview that his experience on the film "wasn't a movie; it was a survival story for all of us." For example, in the scene where the Predator chases Dutch, the water was foul, stagnant and full of leeches.
Because this was the first Predator movie, only the thermal vision and infrared vision was shown from the Predator's point of view (Predator 2 (1990) introduced many other vision modes for the Predator), but with good attention to details, you can get hints that the Predator has different vision modes, even in this movie. The Predator can obviously see and avoid the trip wires that are hidden everywhere in the forest (which would actually not be visible if the Predator only used thermal vision). The Predator can also see whether the soldiers are armed, indicating the Predator has a different vision mode to detect solid metal.
Bill Duke improvised the shaving. The crew scrambled on-set to make a razor that squirts blood.
Due to health and safety regulations, Arnold Schwarzenegger was not allowed to light his cigar inside the helicopter near the beginning of the film. As a result the glow was added optically in post-production.
This film had the second biggest opening weekend of 1987; Beverly Hills Cop II (1987) had the first.
Billy first senses the Predator after the attack on the guerrilla camp. However, this is not the result of a "sixth sense" or heightened state of awareness, which Billy demonstrates in a later segment. Rather, Billy hears the Predator mimic his own laugh that he had shared with Hawkins a few seconds before. If you listen closely, you will hear the Predator attempt to mimic the laugh somewhat quietly, which unnerves Billy immediately, causing him to look up toward the trees.
Shane Black spent his free time on the set writing the screenplay for The Last Boy Scout (1991).
The studio would not allow John McTiernan to shoot this film in anamorphic widescreen, due to the complexities of the optical effects. As a sly sort of retaliation, he added an anamorphic version of the film's opening 20th Century Fox logo, which looks noticeably stretched on-screen.
The Predator costume weighed over two hundred pounds, and even though 7'2" Kevin Peter Hall was a large and powerful man, he had to be connected to a "bungie" rig, to enable him to move more believably.
The original "Hunter" model was a large creature with a long neck, a head shaped like a dog, and one big eye in the middle. This can be seen on the camouflage demos on the DVD. It was only when Stan Winston moved in that the complete design of the "Predator" changed, along with the title.
The "B" camera was given a reel of incorrect film stock, which is why some shots look a lot grainier than others.
The original plot had Dutch Schaefer (Arnold Schwarzenegger) pitted against the Predator alone. Arnold thought this was a bad idea. The script was re-written to include a team of crack commandos.
The screenwriters' intent was to "strip away elements of the modern, organized world. Here's a guy with the most technological weaponry, and he's reduced to making bows and arrows."
Although they were never mentioned in the final film, the full names of the main characters in the original script Were Major Alan "Dutch" Schaefer, Staff Sergeant George Dillon, Sergeant Mac Eliot, Sergeant Blain Cooper, Sergeant Billy Sole, Corporal Poncho Ramirez, and Corporal Rick Hawkins.
John McTiernan and Arnold Schwarzenegger lost twenty-five pounds during filming. Schwarzenegger's weight loss was a professional choice; McTiernan lost the weight because he avoided the food in Mexico, due to health concerns. Unlike McTiernan, most of the cast and crew suffered from traveler's diarrhea since the Mexican hotel in which they were living was having problems with water purification.
The stuntman who doubled for Arnold Schwarzenegger, for the fall into the river, blew out his knee performing this particular stunt.
Two of the actors portraying commandos besieged by the Predator have been elected to state governorships: Jesse Ventura (Independent) was elected Governor of Minnesota in 1998, and Arnold Schwarzenegger (Republican) was elected Governor of California in a hotly-contested recall election in 2003. In addition, Sonny Landham (Republican) ran an unsuccessful campaign for Governor of Kentucky in 2003. Landham and Ventura also sought to enter the Senate in 2008 in their states as, respectively, a Libertarian and an Independent. Both dropped out.
Shane Black, who plays commando Hawkins, is actually a screenwriter. Producer Joel Silver wanted Black, who was writing Lethal Weapon (1987), close to him, to review the script.
John McTiernan was keen to make the comrade banter between the soldiers as real as possible. To help this along, the cast trained together on location with weapons, fitness and a military training regimen that started at 6 a.m. every day, including training in the silent hand signals seen in the movie. He stated that "even though many of the cast had military backgrounds," he "wanted them all to get a chance to know each other, develop as a group, and endure something rough, and conquer it together."
Third film in which Arnold Schwarzenegger wears a Seiko model H558-5009 diver's watch. Since nicknamed "The Arnold", it is highly sought-after by collectors, and regularly trades for values in excess of its original retail cost. Its distinctive black collar and stainless steel fittings suitably complement Schwarzenegger's exaggerated arm muscles in his early films.
All the actors are wearing Vietnam-era surplus canvas load-bearing gear, not the more modern (post-1967) nylon gear.
Stan Winston was inspired by a painting of a Rastafarian warrior in the producer's office.
The film originally featured a Native American soldier as the lead. This character eventually evolved into Billy.
Maria Shriver discussed decoration plans concerning her and Arnold Schwarzenegger's new house with him over the phone, during filming. She later spent a couple of days on the set in Mexico. The stunt crew played a practical joke on the newly married couple, by putting frogs in their shower.
Joel Hynek, a Special Effects Supervisor, who directed the design of the Predator's camouflage effect, is the son of J. Allen Hynek Ph.D., who originated the "Close Encounter" hierarchy for categorizing interactions with aliens. Dr. Hynek was a Professor of Astronomy at Northwestern University.
Aliens (1986) was Jim Thomas and John Thomas's major inspiration behind this movie and Predator 2 (1990). This later led to the crossover "Alien Vs. Predator" comic books, video games, action figures and two "Alien Vs. Predator" feature films released in 2004 and 2007.
The Screenwriters based the film on classic mythological stories: "There have always been creatures like Predator. The Cyclops, the Minotaur. They represent darkness."
Arnold Schwarzenegger "wanted to do a film like The Magnificent Seven (1960), where a team of guys work together."
Most of film was shot under the original title "Hunter". It was only later when the creature design was changed that the movie became "Predator". The clapperboards, showing the original title, can be seen in the outtakes on the Special Edition DVD.
Kevin Peter Hall, the Predator, is also visible without his "Predator Suit" and make-up towards the end, as one of the helicopter rescue crew.
The real life Goblin spider species Predatoroonops blain is named after Blain Cooper; every member of the Predatoroonops genus has a name that references Predator, due to the perceived similarity between the spiders mouthparts and the Predators mandibles.
John McTiernan admitted that R.G. Armstrong was too old for his part, but kept him, simply because he liked him. Added to this, the actor wore "too much" tanning make-up, to hide his age somewhat.
A crew spent two weeks wiring the jungle with explosives, to create the destruction in the military assault scene.
It is alleged that in the early '90s, the Department of Defense tested a form of camouflage that used millions of fibre-optic cables to "mirror" the opposite side of the object to be hidden. They got the idea from this movie and Predator 2 (1990). The first time that people see the Predator in his cloak, he is reaching for the foot of one of Arnold's guys who just got wasted. The idea behind the camouflage was not to appear invisible, but to replicate what is on the opposite side. In the Department of Defense's test footage, when you look at the person wearing the camo (fiber-optic sheet), he or she simply appeared like a heat wave.
MythBusters (2003) proved that covering yourself entirely in mud doesn't, in fact, conceal your body heat, because after only a short time, the mud on your skin becomes warmer.
The film was dedicated to the memories of Agustin Ytuarte and Federico Ysunza, who were both killed on March 31, 1986, in the crash of Mexicana Flight 940.
Jesse Ventura pulled a prank on Arnold Schwarzenegger by pouring water over himself while at the gym before Arnold arrived. Thinking that Ventura was drenched in sweat, Arnold believed that Ventura was working out longer than he usually did. He resolved to begin his workouts sooner. He and Ventura both started arriving earlier to one up each other until they both started to arrive at 4 am.
When they started shooting in the jungle, three hundred Mexican crew members showed up. It was two hundred more than they needed.
The crew didn't burn any jungle. The explosion location had already been burned to the ground two years prior. They did spray-paint a lot of stumps black, though.
Arnold Schwarzenegger believed this movie was such a hit was because the heroes were impressively muscular and big.
During the closing credits, Shane Black is seen prominently displaying a copy of Sgt. Rock #408 (Feb. 1986). In the DVD commentary, John McTiernan notes that at the time, Arnold Schwarzenegger had an adaptation of Sgt. Rock in production, and that's why the comics were on-set, so he could read them. He described the scene where Dutch (Schwarzenegger) walks up to Billy (Sonny Landham), who senses the Predator's presence out in the bush, as a "Sgt. Rock moment".
The crew had to improvise and use the resources of the jungle to their advantage, too. Stuntmen dug giant holes, and locals made massive nets out of vines.
Poncho's grenade launcher is an entirely fictional design, it was custom built out of parts from a Heckler & Koch HK94 (mainly the stock and pistol grip) and a six shot AN-M5 aircraft pyrotechnic discharger (a 37mm flare launcher).
Commitments by Arnold Schwarzenegger delayed the start of filming by several months. The delay gave Joel Silver enough time to secure a minor re-write from Screenwriter David Peoples.
The Predators head was built as a separate piece, and a total of 3 were created for the film,a "hero" head that was capable of facial articulation, a static stunt head and a head that was completely open at the front for use in scenes where the Predator is wearing its mask. The animatronic face on the hero head was controlled by a set of 9 servomotors that enabled motion of the brow area and mandibles, as well as "a cheek squint", an additional external servomotor was added later, hidden in the creatures backpack, to move the lower mandibles, which previously did not open as widely as intended. Kevin Peter Hall was able to puppeteer the creature's mouth with his own jaw, and wore contact lenses to finish the effect.
In the scene where the Special Forces team attack the village, the guerrilla, who gets blown up in the van, is played by Henry Kingi. Kingi would play Colombian Scorpions member "El Scorpio" in Predator 2 (1990).
Two waterfalls are used in the climax of the movie, both near Palenque, Mexico. The first is Misol Ha, just outside the village (beginning and end of the sequence), and the other is Agua Azul about an hour's drive away (the middle part of the sequence).
The map General Phillips uses to brief Dutch is a map of Brazil. The area that the map shows is a region known as "cerrado biome", in core areas with small and medium trees, wooded savanna, and gramineous-woody savanna. Given that, the big tropical forests with deep ravines and huge trees are geographically incorrect, once that featured region on the map is called Chapada das Mangabeiras, in the plateaus in the center of Brazil. This point is rendered moot, however, by the fact that the countries in which the film takes place are never identified in the course of the movie.
One of only four movies featuring two United States Governors with roles as actors (not "self" credits).
The film changed its title from "Hunter" to Predator (1987) to avoid confusion with Hunter (1984), which starred Fred Dryer who played on the same football team at San Diego State University (SDSU) as Carl Weathers.
Was originally titled, 'The Predator' until they changed it to just 'Predator'. 'The Predator' would go on to become the name of the upcoming sequel directed by Shane Black who was also in the original film.
Each character has different camouflage make-up. Dutch wears "strong lines", to show that he's a leader.
According to John McTiernan's DVD commentary, some minor cuts were done for an R-rating. Predator 2 (1990), on the other hand, had to be cut twenty times for an R-rating.
John McTiernan was impressed with Elpidia Carrillo, "She knows more about the character than I do."
The Screenwriters did a lot of research into U.S. Special Forces operations in South America, to make sure how they would really sneak into the jungle.
The tree the Predator stands on was made of concrete, in order to support the weight of the actor and his costume.
Originally, Joel Silver wanted Michael Kamen to do the music for this film after collaborating on Lethal Weapon (1987), but Kamen was unavailable due to him working on Adventures in Babysitting (1987). However, director John McTiernan recommended hiring Alan Silvestri after hearing his work on Back to the Future (1985).
John McTiernan got the idea for the nuclear bomb countdown from a dream he had in high school.
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura, and Sven-Ole Thorsen appeared in The Running Man (1987).
The filmmakers used an inframetrics thermal video scanner for the Predators thermal vision as it gave good heat images of objects and people
Editor Mark Helfrich says he may have let the helicopter scene run too long..."I had a lot of cool helicopter shots... I wanted to use them. I guess I was influenced by Apocalypse Now (1979)."
Arnold Schwarzenegger's pose for the movie poster of "Predator" is almost an exact copy for the character's cover art on the video game cartridge and box art for the NES game "Contra".
Rambo: First Blood Part II (1985) and Aliens (1986) have been cited as influences behind the film.
In the Alien vs Predator universe. The film takes place 17 years before AVP: Alien Vs. Predator (2004) and AVP 2: Alien Vs. Predator: Requiem (2007).
Aliens (1986) was cited as one of Jim and John Thomas's influences behind the film because it was about space marines battling against and being picked off one-by-one by deadly extra terrestrial creatures. In Predator 2 (1990) Harrigan (Danny Glover) discovers the skull of a Xenomorph in the Predator spaceship. The scene spawned crossover comic books, action figures and video games of Alien Vs. Predator and two feature films in 2004 and 2007.
The Predator/Prey Pack DLC for the video game Mortal Kombat X adds an alternate costume for the character Jax named "Carl Weathers" which has him gain Al Dillon's attire from Predator the alternate skin also replaces Jax's default dialogue with new dialogue recorded by Carl Weathers, additionally selecting the "Carl Weathers" skin for Jax and playing against Johnny Cage in the "Commando" skin will unlock a special loading screen in which Johnny Cage exclaims "You son of a Bitch" before he and Jax recreate the famous handshake between Weathers and Schwarzenegger from the beginning of Predator.
When the script was pitched around Hollywood, the shorthand description used for it was "'Alien (1979) in the jungle."
Billy seems to have a sixth sense regarding the Predator, in the novelization however his powers go even further and he is said to be actively psychic, able to access the memories of his ancestors and the ancient Mayans who used to live in the jungle and can actively sense the Predators presence.
Several weapons were proposed for the Predator but cut from the finished film, including a speargun (a projectile from which is glimpsed very briefly wounding Blain before he is killed) and a spear- these later resurfaced as the Speargun and the Combistick in Predator 2 (1990) another weapon designed for the creature, but not recycled in the second movie was a sword. Two swords were built from fiberglass and the weapon was actually incorporated into the first test suit, sheathed inside the Predators backpack. However it was removed when it was found the creatures head caught on the handle when Kevin Peter Hall turned to look around.
Additional visual effects, mainly for the opening title sequence of the Predator arriving on Earth, where supplied by Dream-Quest Images (Later Oscar winners for their work on The Abyss (1989) and Total Recall (1990).
The animal that startles Blain just before he's killed by the Predator is a Mexican tree porcupine.
In the novelization of Predator, Mac is caucasian and both he and Blain are quite racist towards Dillon and the Hispanic locals.
The actors learned how to be a real military unit, by performing maneuvers and marches in the jungle.
The M-203 grenade launcher mounted on Dutch's rifle was a custom made prop, not an actual grenade launcher. It was made by prop master John Zemansky for Scarface (1983) for the famous "Little Friend" scene. It was designed to fire blank 12 gauge shotgun shells to produce the muzzle flash. After Scarface wrapped Zemansky sold the prop to Stembridge gun rentals, it was rented for use in Predator. So the prop launcher has the distinction of being used on screen by both Al Pacino and Arnold Schwarzenegger- albeit mounted on different rifles.
When the film was broadcast on ITV in the UK in 1991, some violent scenes in the film, and bad language, were cut for censorship, and for time: Mac warning Dillon that he'll bleed him, if he gives up his position again. The severing of Dillon's right arm, and his demise. The Predator ripping out Billy's skull and spine, and Dutch calling the Predator "One Ugly Motherfucker" when The Predator removes his mask.
The crew covered Arnold Schwarzenegger in mud by shooting it through a hose like they were "stuccoing a house."
Stunt Director Craig R. Baxley made his directorial debut with the film Action Jackson (1988), and was produced by Joel Silver who also produced this film. Three of the actors from this film appeared in that film; Carl Weathers as the title character, Bill Duke as Captain Armbruster, and Sonny Landham as Mr. Quick.
The Walther PP pistol used by Anna is likely intended to stand in for the Makarov PM pistol, which looks somewhat similar and would be appropriate for a guerrilla force being supplied by the Soviet Union.
Dutch was born on January 13th 1948 and is 39 in the film and Dillon was born on February 15th 1948 and is also 39 and is a month younger than Dutch.
Supposedly, Jerry Goldsmith was originally approached to score the film, but was unavailable.
Originally the Jungle Hunter Predator had a very different much more elaborate Bio-Mask designed to mimic the creatures tribal aesthetic however Producer Joel Silver reportedly "hated it instantly" complaining that the complex design would lessen the effect when the Predator finally removes the mask to reveal its face. As a result, it was redesigned to be far more simple and plain. The original rejected mask prop was later reused for a hunter in Predator 2 (1990) and would go on to inspire the masks worn by Celtic in Alien vs. Predator (2004) and Scarface in the video game Predator:Concrete Jungle (2005). Several other pieces of the Jungle hunter outfit where similarly reuse for the ending of Predator 2 the body suit was recycled for Predator Elder Greyback while the Bio-Mask actually used in the first film was given to a Scout Predator.
The map General Phillips (R.G. Armstrong) uses to brief Dutch is a map of Guatemala, the map shows parts of the Chapada das Mangabeiras mountain range.
Dillon points out that both he and Dutch have lighters of some personal significance, while it's never clarified in the film, The novel states they obtained the lighters while part of a commando unit operating in Thailand.
In keeping with this being a black ops endeavor the helicopters have no registration numbers nor other identification.
Fans sometimes refer to the self destruct device as a "Wrist-Nuke". However, it has never been clarified whether the device is actually nuclear in nature. This nickname more likely refers to the size and nature of the explosion itself, not necessarily its atomic effects
Kevin Peter Hall had previously portrayed an alien on safari for human quarry, in the low-budgeted Without Warning (1980).
In the novelization of the film, The Predator is very different from the creature that appeared in the movie. In the book it is a shape-shifter, able to mimic any form it chooses just the slightest physical contact, and even capable of dissipating entirely, vanishing and becoming part of the blowing breeze. And its basic form it is a tall humanoid creature with crimson scaly skin and three fingered hands. It's only weapons are a telescoping spear that it throws (incidentally similar to the combistick from Predator 2) and a static spider web-like trap capable of shredding anything caught in it (similar to the net fired by the Netgun in Predator 2) instead of a cloak, the predator uses its shape-shifting ability and chameleon-like skin to hide the Predator is also able to possess any animal its chooses (but not humans, one of the reasons it is so interested in them.) It's blood is translucent and amber in color instead of green, although it still glows at night. The Predator does not kill men for sport, but rather out of curiosity; the way it horrifically mutilates its prey is merely an attempt to study and better understand humans. It does however keep trophies taken from those that it kills on board its ship.
Shane Black's character, Hawkins, is seen reading a Sgt. Rock comic book. At one point, a Sgt. Rock film was in development with Arnold Schwarzenegger starring as the title character.
Jesse Ventura (Blain) became the first actor ever to fire the M134 Minigun handheld, several actors have since joined this statistic, including fellow Predator star Arnold Schwarzenegger (Dutch) in Terminator 2 Judgment Day (1991) and Oleg Taktarov in Predators (2010)
The crew would chop down leaves, and re-plant them in front of the camera, for some shots.
Dutchs main weapon is an AR-15/SP1 slab side M16 fitted with an M16A1 birdcage muzzle flash with an M203 launcher and a perforated forend for the M203, Dillon carries a Heckler and Koch HK94A3 (chopped and converted) as well as many members of the squad, Blaine's minigun "OI Painless" a handheld M134 which was modified for handheld use with an M60 handguard assembly installed beneath the barrels and a rear pistol grip, Mac weapon is an M60E3, Poncho carries a AN/M5 pyrotechnic discharger built from a Heckler and Koch HK94, Billy's weapon is a AR/SP1 fitted with an underbarrel Mossberg 500.
Although not mentioned what the pouch is that Billy clutches when afraid, it's something filled with certain sacred objects that is worn by Indigenous peoples, used for protection.
Apart for this film, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sonny Landham have something else in common, they both played with Sylvester Stallone in prison movies. Arnold in Escape Plan (2013), and Sonny in Lock Up (1989).
The theatrical trailer for Predator featured music from James Horner's compositions for Aliens (1986). The specific music used can be found on the Aliens soundtrack as Track 01 - Main Titles. The trailer also features unfinished, basic visual effects depicting magenta-colored heat signatures on some of the characters.
Two of the cast members later became governors of two different states. Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected to the governor's mansion in California and Jesse Ventura was elected governor of Minnesota.
Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bill Duke both previously starred in another 20th Century Fox action film Commando (1985) which in that film John Matrix (Arnold) is a retired elite commando and Cook (Bill) is a renegade Ex Green Beret. Bill Duke went on record in an interview that he got along with Arnold Schwarzenegger when they worked together on that film.
The original plan for the movie was to have several Predators. Luckily for Arnold Schwarzenegger, that didn't pan out.
James Olson who worked with Schwarzenegger in Commando (1985) was offered the part of Gen. Phillips, but turned it down for fear of being typecast. He did however recommend his friend R.G. Armstrong for the part, and after got the role he called him and thanked him for the recommendation.
Sven-Ole Thorsen, who is a personal friend and bodybuilding partner of Arnold Schwarzenegger makes a cameo appearance in the film as the Russian Military Adviser at the guerrilla camp. Thorsen appeared in most of Schwarzenegger's films throughout the 1980s in either cameo or small supporting roles.
The 1994 arcade game Alien vs. Predator features a character named Dutch Schaefer as an homage to the character in the film. Additionally, Dutch Schafer in the game has a mechanical arm and is said to be a cyborg, likely a reference to Schwarzenegger's starring role in the Terminator series, particularly the second film which features a famous scene where Schwarzenegger strips the skin from his left arm, revealing the robotic structure beneath.
Some sources give Dillon's first name as George While his first name is never mentioned in the film, the novel states that his first name is Al.
The film's iconic score was used in numerous movie trailers including Ghost in the Machine (1993) and Blind Vision (1992).
When Dutch's right shoulder is wounded when The Predator shoots him with the shoulder cannon, if you watch the scene and look very closely, the Predator doesn't shoot Dutch in his right shoulder and shoots at Dutch's M16 with an underslung M203 grenade launcher. If the Predator had shot Dutch in the right shoulder, Dutch would had lost his right arm.
3 years after the film's release, Jesse Ventura and Sven-Ole Thorsen starred in the sci-fi film Abraxas: Guardian of the Universe (1990). Arnold Schwarzenegger was offered the title role but turned it down to do Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) and Jesse Ventura took the role.
At 44:01 Pancho says to Anna "Qué pasó mujer? Qué viste?" which is Spanish for "What happened woman? What did you see?"
During a confrontation scene with Dillon, Dutch mentioned that his crew were "not expendables". As of 2014, none of the actors who played Dutch's crew appeared in any of the three Expendables film unlike Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger) who appeared in all of them.
Sonny Landham, who played Billy, previously played a character named Billy Bear in 48 Hrs. (1982) which was also produced by Lawrence Gordon and Joel Silver. In both movies, his character dies shirtless while brandishing a knife.
Throughout the film Richard Chaves' character is referred to as "Pancho"; yet the English subtitles on the video disc and the credits spell his name "Poncho". "Pancho" is a given name in Spanish; "Poncho" is a waterproof outer garment worn to repel rain.
At 1:12, Dutch (Arnold Schwarzenegger) reveals that he knows they are being hunted by saying, "Don't! Leave it... He didn't kill you because you weren't armed...No sport."
Each members role of Dutch rescue team; Billy (Sonny Landham), Scout and Tracker; Mac (Bill Duke), Sergeant, 2nd in command/Assault; Poncho (Richard Chaves), Demolitions Engineer/Translator (possibly medic); Hawkins (Shane Black), Radio Operator (possible medic); Blain (Jesse Ventura), Heavy Weapon Support.
Dutch covers himself in mud to screen his body heat, and then hides in a tree to ambush the Predator. In the Christopher Pike novel, The Eternal Dawn, the lead character Alisa, who is a vampire, does the same with an unknown assailant, except with leaves as well.
Scenes with Jesse Ventura were shown to viewers on "WWF Superstars of Wrestling" to promote the movie. On the show, Ventura kept commentating and bragging to Vince McMahon that he was the leading role in the movie and not Arnold. He did this obviously to stroke his ego as he was playing a heel (bad guy) in the WWF. His part was ranked no higher than fifth on the list.
Three of the main actors have run for Governor of their respective state: Arnold Schwarzenegger (California), Jesse Ventura (Minnesota) and Sonny Landham (Kentucky). Landham was the only unsuccessful campaign.
After the ITV broadcast of Commando (1985) in the early 1990s, a trailer of Predator (1987) was shown, which a voiceover is heard saying "Next Saturday, an elite army squad are being hunted by a ruthless enemy.... Arnold Schwarzenegger in Predator. Next Saturday at 9:40pm."
In the final season of the BBC science fiction series Doctor Who (1963) (TV Series) The series title protagonist The Doctor (Sylvester McCoy) and his companion Ace (Sophie Aldred) find themselves on a hostile wilderness planet inhabited by a race of extra terrestrial hunters called The Cheeta People. Sylvester McCoy's first appeared as The 7th version of The Doctor the same year Predator (1987) was released. The Predator happens to be an extra terrestrial hunter.
Blain's weapon is a M134 Minigun handheld. The Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger) would also use a M134 Minigun handheld in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991).