'Predators' Filmmakers Wanted To Be 'Inspired' By Original

'We wanted ... to take that very classic creature and the dynamics,' screenwriter Robert Rodriguez says of turning to 1987 sci-fi hit.

Robert Rodriguez began reimagining a "Predators" movie more than 15 years ago. But for all of his hard work, the result was an overly ambitious script that he admits could never have been filmed at the time. The project went nowhere ... until last year.

Rodriguez got word from Fox that the studio wanted to revive the sci-fi horror franchise using the writer/director's script as the jumping off point. He was excited, but at a loss as to how to approach the material all these years later.

"It's almost like there's three movies in there," Rodriguez told MTV News. "You could have split it up into three pictures. I didn't even know what to do with it, because I'd worked on it so long ago. I worked on it so long — about a year — that it was always tough to crack. I needed fresh eyes on it."

Enter Nimród Antal, a rising director who's been compared to Quentin Tarantino. Antal's job was to find a filmable movie within Rodriguez's original script.

"I came into a situation where there was already an existing draft, and there were a lot of elements in it I thought were fantastic," Antal told us. "What I tried to do was see how I could inject something to either elevate it or focus it. Fortunately, Robert was really receptive to the ideas. It was really an organic process. Being fans of the original film, we had an easy time because we would always go, 'Are the fans — are we — going to dig that?' "

The fans were the focal point during the entire filmmaking process. Rodriguez and Antal's objective was a simple, yet lofty, one: to satisfy fans of the 1987 Arnold Schwarzenegger-starring original, while infusing the reboot with vitality, a wow factor that had been missing from subsequent franchise installments.

"We wanted to be inspired by the first film, to take that very classic creature and the dynamics," Rodriguez said. "[Antal] had to balance that every day, at every moment — how much to make it reverential to the first film and how much just to make it."

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