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Prey Star Amber Midthunder Didn't Initially Know She Was Auditioning For A Predator Film - Exclusive

"Prey" is not a standard "Predator" franchise film by any stretch of the imagination. While it does pit a menacing Yautja presence against strong human warriors with many of the grittiness and iconic alien kills we've come to expect, it's the first canonical "Predator" film to break in-world chronological continuity. Taking place in Comanche territory hundreds of years in the past, it's dedicated to a grounded, accurate historical feel like never before. These changes open up new on-screen possibilities for the series, in a film that innovates with its formula in some truly successful ways.

In this light, it makes sense that auditions for this film may not at first feel like auditions for the "Predator" franchise. In an exclusive interview with Looper, star Amber Midthunder revealed just that. While auditioning for the pivotal role of Naru, it was clear that the film is a grounded, historically set feature film ... and she didn't find out it was a "Predator" film until much later.

A cloaked audition process

Amber Midthunder told us about a normal, pretty standard audition process that hid some important project details. "I auditioned the conventional way," she explained. "An audition came to me, and I did not know that it was a "Predator" film. I just knew that it was a movie about a young Comanche woman set in the 1700s and that she wanted to be a hunter and that Dan [Trachtenberg] was attached."

The involvement of "10 Cloverfield Lane" director Trachtenberg — and a love for the character — were enough to pique her interest at the time, despite not knowing a pretty significant element of the story. "Dan is an incredible director, so that was enough for me to feel interested," she continued. "Then COVID happened and it disappeared, and then it came back a while later and I didn't know, again, what it was."

When things started gearing up again, Midthunder finally discovered what the project really was, and it triggered a deep dive into everything "Predator. "Eventually, I found out what it was and I cried anxiety tears, and then I was excited and went back and watched all the films." 

Her first discovery? That the franchise is loaded with quotes and images that permeate everyday life. "It really is permeated into jokes that you hear, or famous lines, or memes, or stuff like that, and you don't realize until you go back and watch it." It's appropriate that the audition process, like the extraterrestrial baddie itself, was cloaked.

"Prey" debuts on Hulu on August 5.