Predator Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger turned down role in The Predator, but Shane Black understands why

Contributed by
Sep 11, 2018

With The Predator plagued by cast controversy and less-than-ideal reviews, it’s no wonder that some former franchise stars would’ve shied away from involvement. Maybe that’s the hindsight talking, but either way, it’s not a stretch to think that Arnold Schwarzenegger might be pleased he sat this one out.

The original Predator hero, Schwarzenegger had been approached by director Shane Black to come back for the decades-later sequel and turned him down. He wanted to be the star or nothing, not have a glorified cameo in a movie that, well, might not live up to the star’s entry in the franchise. And honestly, Black understood his trepidation.

Speaking to Digital Spy, Black commented on the actor’s refusal and was clear that there were no hard feelings. The only reason he didn’t offer the character the starring role is because “the studio wanted a fresher movie that featured an evolving cast. They didn't want to hinge the movie on the re-emergence of Schwarzenegger.”

The cameo would’ve been "just participating at the very end, at the climax of the movie," which, after seeing the movie, would have made the ending that much weirder. And nobody expected Arnie to really bow to that small of an appearance.

"Understandably – and believe me, I completely get it – he said, 'Look, that's kind of a small part, and I don't really think I want to do that. I'm off to do Terminator with Jim Cameron," Black explained. "So I totally got it, you know? If I was Schwarzenegger, I'd want to be one of the stars of a film, or nothing."

That said, if The Predator somehow warrants a sequel, Black would love to have the best Predator fighter back in action. "I even said to him, 'If you're in this one, we would open it up for the sequel, because now you're back in the franchise'," Black said. "So you know, if there's another movie, there's no reason why he couldn't be either in it, or the star of it, or whatever someone decides at a future date." Seriously, Black is open to anything. Schwarzenegger, call him.