Movies and TV
Franchise Terminated - What Went Wrong with the Terminator Series

Shant Istamboulian | 22 Jul 2015 13:00
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Because the Terminator rights have always been up for grabs, the films following T2 have no real flow even though T3 and Salvation are meant to be true sequels.

After C2 Pictures, the resurrected label run by T2 producers Andrew G. Vajna and Mario Kassar of Carolco, lost franchise rights after T3, it was picked up by the Halcyon Company, which scrapped all previous plans stemming from that film involving Mostow and actors Nick Stahl (John Connor) and Claire Danes (Connor's future wife, Kate Brewster), starting from scratch. The characters were all recast and the franchise jumped forward in time where we meet everyone as they are fighting for the resistance.

Salvation underwhelmed at the box-office and a planned trilogy was scrapped. In a surprising twist, the rights were up for grabs again and were nabbed this time by Megan Ellison's Annapurna Pictures and the wheels for the reboot began to spin.

The musical chairs involving a coterie of different producers explains why John Connor has now been played by five different actors. While Schwarzenegger has been the one constant in all these films (yes, even Salvation), the decision to recast all the other parts (especially for Genisys) and essentially start from scratch proves to be a failed experiment. Emilia Clarke, Jai Courtney, and Jason Clarke are all solid actors but never once do we buy them as Sarah Connor, Kyle Reese, and John Connor, respectively.

Which brings us to the good news: Linda Hamilton will always be Sarah Connor, Michael Biehn will always be Kyle Reese, Furlong will always be John Connor?

It's hard to say if the Terminator films have a future beyond Genisys. Soft box-office and, worse, fan apathy state no. Schwarzenegger's involvement in any future film is also up in the air. Like the perfect ambassador, he's literally the face of the Terminator films. Perhaps it is time to say "Hasta la vista, baby" to the franchise and cherish the one-two punch of The Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgement Day. After all, reboot or no reboot, those movies are here to stay.

Follow Shant on Twitter @shantleon and visit his blog, where he discusses all things film-related.


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