2015’s Terminator Genisys was meant to kick-start a new trilogy and was hailed as a “renaissance” by franchise started James Cameron. However, the movie tanked in the US, and despite a solid run overseas, the jumbled reboot/sequel/I don’t know what it is seemingly killed the franchise.
Back in Cameron’s 1984 original, Michael Biehn’s Kyle Reese described the killing machine as;
“It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.”
In many ways, Biehn was inadvertently describing the Terminator franchise as no matter how hard filmmakers who aren’t James Cameron try, they just can’t make a decent sequel. Early last year, Cameron announced he was producing and developing the story for a new Terminator movie with Deadpool director Tim Miller. Cameron will be busy for the next fifty-nine years making Avatar sequels, so Miller is taking on the franchise.
Linda Hamilton is returning to her iconic role as Sarah Connor with Arnie back in some capacity as the ageing killing machine from the future. Filming is currently underway, but after five movies you’d be forgiven for being confused with where the new film fits into the timeline. At this stage, Terminator has a more convoluted timeline than Fast & Furious, so what will Cameron be erasing from Terminator’s history.
Apologies for burying the lead, but Terminator 6 will ignore the events of Rise of the Machines, Salvation, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, and Genisys (that spelling still bothers me more than it should). Speaking about the project earlier this year, Cameron made it clear this was essentially Terminator 3.
“This is a continuation of the story from Terminator 1 and Terminator 2. And we’re pretending the other films were a bad dream. Or an alternate timeline, which is permissible in our multi-verse.”
Cameron wasn’t paid for his endorsement of part five, and he has been vocal about counting down the days until the rights revert to him so nobody else can ruin the franchise. Well, nobody else but him.
I loathed Rise of the Machines; it was a thinly veiled publicity machine for the soon to be Governor of California. The plot was weak, the acting poor, and legendary bad ass Sarah Connor was dead (Hamilton declined to reprise her role). Salvation had some fun elements (Anton Yelchin’s Reese), but was a deeply misguided effort. Then, actually, I’m not going to spend more time ragging on Genisys. The first twenty minutes were kind of fun, a whistle-stop tour of Terminator past with Arnie fighting his younger self-was alright. It was all downhill from there.
Ultimately, Cameron returning to close out the franchise he started can only be a good thing if another Terminator movie has to exist. That said, recent reports indicate that Terminator 6: Terminator 3 is the start of a new trilogy. NOOOOOOOOOOO!