Posted on Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 by Russ Fischer
You may know that Jean-Claude Van Damme originally had a faceless but significant part in John McTiernan‘s Predator. Specifically, he was going to be the guy in the Predator suit, back before the alien design we all know and love was totally finalized. In fact, Van Damme spent a couple days running around doing tests in a lobster-like costume and feeling pretty pissed-off about the fact that his martial arts skills were going to waste. The costume didn’t work, and eventually it was scrapped for a different design, worn by the much larger actor Kevin Peter Hall.
Stan Winston’s son recently had effects guy Steve Johnson (Ghostbusters, Species, Blade 2) as a guest on the inaugural episode of The Monster Show. Therein, Johnson told the story of the original Predator design and Van Damme’s involvement. It isn’t the most kind retelling of the story, but elapsed decades erase the need to maintain decorum. The story is so weird you’ll probably think it is a joke. You must watch the video below.
Here’s the Predator story, via Stan Winston School and our friend J. Christopher Arrison. It. Is. Incredible.
Here’s the full show, which features a lot of detail about films like Ghostbusters, American Werewolf in London, and The Abyss. It takes a little while to get going, and the structure of the show is pretty raw, but when the stories start flowing you’ll hear some really wonderful stuff.