Terminator: Dark Fate Stars Detail James Cameron’s Essential Contribution

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While we all know that Terminator: Dark Fate marks filmmaker James Cameron’s long-awaited return to his signature franchise—with plans for more films in the future—what’s less clear is his precise contribution. Cameron receives a story credit and a producing credit on the film, but stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton recently shed additional light on his role. “Without him there would have been no start,” said Schwarzenegger. “He then hired the writers that worked with him while he was prepping and shooting Avatar and all those things. So I think he did an extraordinary job, and he was on top of the situation. He was part of the casting. He’s the one that called Linda to bring her back and all of those kinds of things.”

Hamilton confirmed this claim, making it clear that she had no intention of returning without Cameron’s involvement. “Obviously he’s the dynamo behind the franchise and I… didn’t want to come back unless James came back as well,” she explained. “He’s got an amazing mind, and an amazing sense. We still struggled with script, all of us, because it’s a complex world, and even though we had the vague outline, a shape to the movie, none of us really knew who Sarah Connor would be within that story. Many discussions: is she a hopeless alcoholic like Rooster Cogburn in True Grit? It’s been 28 years. What has she done? Has she gone off and tried to live a normal life? Has she become a school teacher? There were endless possibilities, and carefully and slowly we started sort of wringing them down into a real shape.”

Terminator: Dark Fate arrives in theatres tonight. Check out the trailer below.