Linda Hamilton Set to Return to 'Terminator' Franchise (Exclusive)
She’ll be back.
After waving hasta la vista, baby, more than 25 years ago, Linda Hamilton is returning to the world of Terminator, reuniting with James Cameron, the creator of the sci-fi franchise, for the new installment being made by Skydance and Paramount.
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Cameron made the announcement at a private event celebrating the storied franchise, saying, "As meaningful as she was to gender and action stars everywhere back then, it’s going to make a huge statement to have that seasoned warrior that she’s become return."
With Hamilton’s return, Cameron hopes to once again make a statement on gender roles in action movies.
"There are 50-year-old, 60-year-old guys out there killing bad guys,” he said, referring to aging male actors still anchoring movies, “but there isn’t an example of that for women.”
Tim Miller, the filmmaker who made his breakout feature debut with Deadpool, is directing the sequel, which is returning to its roots by having the involvement of Cameron for the first time since 1991’s Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
Cameron is producing along with Skydance. And the new film, which will be distributed by Paramount with Fox handling it internationally, is based on a story crafted by Cameron. Cameron and Miller created a writers room to hammer out what is planned to be a trilogy that can stand as single movies or form an overarching story. David Goyer, whose credits include the Blade and Christopher Nolan’s Batman movies; Charles Eglee, who created Dark Angel with Cameron; Josh Friedman, who created the Terminator TV spinoff, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, and Justin Rhodes, a frequent Goyer collaborator, were part of that room.
Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has starred as both a bad guy and good guy portraying the cool killer robot sent from the future, is already set to return and with Cameron and now Hamilton on board, the new Terminator film will once again have its original creative team.
Hamilton starred in the first film, The Terminator, released in 1984 as a low-budget genre play, playing one of the silver screen's strongest female heroines, Sarah Connor. Connor was a waitress who is being hunted down by an unstoppable killing machine, played by Schwarzenegger, sent from the future. Connor learned that in the future, machines have taken over and that she is the mother of the human resistance leader.
The actress returned to the character in Cameron’s 1991 sequel, which was a summer blockbuster that pushed the visual effects envelope and set box office records for that time. This time Connor, buffed and in prime fighting form, was a hard-edged, take-no-prisoners warrior who fought like a bear to protect her son.
Both Hamilton and Cameron, who were married to each other in the later 1990s, sat out the installments that followed in 2003, 2009 and 2015.
Story details are, of course, being kept on a secure hard drive at Cyberdyne Systems, but Cameron and Miller are treating the new movie as a direct sequel to Cameron's Judgment Day. And the themes of the potential evils of technology will once again be at the fore.
But the new movie will also be seen as a passing of the baton to a new generation of characters.
"We’re starting a search for an 18-something woman to be the new centerpiece of the new story," Cameron said. "We still fold time. We will have characters from the future and the present. There will be mostly new characters, but we'll have Arnold and Linda’s characters to anchor it."
Hamilton is represented by Innovative Artists.
by Graeme McMillan
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