Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Lionsgate Buys Terminator for a Mere $15m

Lionsgate bought the auctioned-off rights to the entire Terminator franchise recently for a mere $15 million from its financially beleaguered owners.  I have four reactions:

(1) Now that James Cameron has even more money, I wonder if he wishes he’d found time to buy the killer-cyborg series he created.

(2) Joss Whedon put in a joke bid of $10,000 a while back — but seeing how cheaply it went (and knowing he could probably sell a Terminator movie with his friend and former Terminator Summer Glau in it), I wonder if he also wishes he’d put in a serious, winning bid.

(3) For a mere $15 million, I almost wish I had taken out some loans and bought the franchise myself, or at least had bought Summer Glau.

(4) If they actually get their act together and make another Terminator movie, I hope they’ll skip all present-day and time travel shenanigans once and for all and just have it all take place in the post-apocalyptic robo-wasteland (as the fourth film mostly did), since EVEN IN REAL LIFE IT’S ALREADY FREAKIN’ 2010 A.D.  We live in the future.  No time travel necessary.  Let’s just start fighting the robots already.

Hollywood’s in a reboot/start-from-scratch mood lately with genre films (with Spider-Man now slated to restart with younger actors, too), but Terminator could continue smoothly simply by setting the film in 2019 and having Schwarzenegger-type robots roaming the land and slaughtering human survivors.  That’s where we left off, after all — and it’s where, in our hearts, we always wanted to be.  Why reinvent the wheel when you could just keep the pedal to the metal?  That would give them exactly ten fictional years to play with before all the previous films’ time travel expeditions begin.


Dave said...

The only complaint I had about T4’s post-apoplectic setting is that by solidifying that the human race did indeed get destroyed, and that John Connor did indeed live to see it, and introducing that destroying Skynet was merely one battle in the entire war, they sort of deflated the tension of the previous movies, which was based on the idea that that future was both avoidable, and could also be worse (should Connor have been killed, the implication was that it would have been hopeless).

Todd Seavey said...

Yeah, with the basic conceit played out (arguably in the very first film), it’s not really clear why we need another Terminator movie, as Peter Griffin so rightly notes in his “conversation” with Christian Bale on the Terminator set here:


…but if one _were_ to do another, forward progress would be nice. Let me also add that since they never explained how a bunch of robots came to invent time travel, if I were in charge, I’d say the liquid-metal robots a la T2 actually bend spacetime and that’s where they developed the skill. I am available for scriptwriting.

Todd Seavey said...

UPDATE: Long, complicated story short, despite it looking until the very last minute like it’d be Lionsgate, hedge fund Pacificor actually got the franchise for $29.5m.