The last movie of Predator franchise, Prey, was critically acclaimed. However, director by Dan Trachtenberg The film also saw the emergence of an unlikely star: coconut the dog.
Coco plays Sarii, the sidekick and best friend of The prey protagonist, Naru (Amber Middle of Thunder). Sarii is Naru’s most trusted companion and accompanies her when she goes hunting. Eventually, Sarii becomes a key part of the Comanche fight against the Predator (Dane DiLiegro). But beyond battling alien foes, Sarii also helps Naru overcome his self-doubt regarding his hunting abilities, standing by his side for battles against a large mountain lion and a ferocious grizzly bear.
Now, a bit more about Coco’s backstory has been revealed thanks to a social media post of Fulton County Animal Services in Fulton, Georgia. The animal shelter said Coco “was placed in our care in early 2021” and they were delighted to hear that their former resident “has been very successful”, noting that fans have started calling her in line “the Meryl Streep of dogs.” According to Fulton County, Coco had no prior film training – debuting in Prey even more impressive – and “was adopted by his family specifically for this project”.
The shelter further added that Trachtenberg originally cut Coco’s role in the film. However, he was convinced to write more scenes around the dog when test audiences responded well to the project, and “encouraged [Trachtenberg] to include more Coco in the film.” As a result, Coco would become one of the The prey main characters. Notably, Midthunder called Coco “a bit of a mess – but in a sweet way” during the film’s press tour, and, despite needing some extra guidance from the trainers, “the own cheerful and Coco’s playfulness…won the hearts of the cast and crew.”
Trachtenberg said in a previous interview that he wanted to do Prey feel distinctly different from other films in the franchise. One way to do it, it seems, was to add Naru’s four-legged sidekick, and one who found himself going from Georgia shelter dog to Hollywood star.
Indeed, Coco’s performance, along with the rest of the cast, helped the film gain critical acclaim, with some calling Prey the best Predator movie for years. The film notably even received a standing ovation during the Collider screening at the recent San Diego Comic-Con.
Prey is available to stream now on Hulu. Check out the Fulton County Animal Services Facebook post and the Prey trailer below: