Like the titular murderous cyborg, the Terminator franchise has been through the wringer but just keeps coming. And now there is a big development with the announcement that Arnold Schwarzenegger is aiming to return to the character that kicked his career into hyperdrive with a brand new outing.
According to Deadline, the only parts of the package that exist right now are a deal to develop a new film with Schwarzenegger attached to star and Jumanji/Against the Ropes producer Robert Cort shepherding the project. It’s being offered around to all the studios and given Arnie’s inclusion, it’s not hard to imagine that one of the companies could leap on this like a hungry dog.
There’s likely to be especially strong competition from Universal and Sony/Lionsgate, with the latter pair particularly interested since they were beaten to the rights at the last auction by Pacificor, a hedge fund company that won them back in 2010 with a bid of $29.5 million.
But Universal has also apparently been trying to manipulate the new movie, aiming to put Fast Five director Justin Lin in place to get the tale of man vs. machine moving again.
Agency powerhouse CAA is pimping the new deal and everyone is aware that the rights have a built-in expiry date: in 2018, all the US rights to the characters revert to James Cameron, which might explain why there’s now a renewed interest in getting movies made before the creator of the Terminator universe can shut anything down.
So while Arnie has plenty of new projects bubbling away, including his planned Governator cartoon and rumoured links to Ji-Woon Kim’s Last Stand and Antoine Fuqua’s The Tomb, it could be one of his old roles that kicks off his post-government return to acting.
But with a hefty price tag, it remains to be seen if Skynet’s story will be continued… Or even rebooted. If it goes ahead, do you think they’ll opt for Schwarzenegger as he looks now, and put out a T-800 with killer wrinkle action? Or use CG-trickery a la Terminator Salvation to age him back to his glory days? Sound off!