Likes Miles Bennett Dyson before her, Megan Ellison is single mindedly marching forward with plans that will lead to the creation of Terminators. There have been rumors going around that a new Terminator movie is in the works with Justin Lin directing and Arnold Schwarzenegger attached to do at least something in the acting department. Well turns out that those rumors are very much true, as the rights to the film have been auctioned off and Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Films has come up the winner. Up until zero hour it was reportedly looking very much like Lionsgate would come out on top of the bidding war, but the fact that Ellison has a bunch of money seems to have been the difference maker.
This grab at a big budget franchise marks a bit of a turn in the strategy Ellison has employed so far in her budding film producing career. Up to this point she had seemed to be sticking to funding beleaguered projects that respected but financially underappreciated directors had in the works. She is involved in Kathryn Bigelow’s upcoming Bin Laden film, John Hillcoat’s bootlegging adventure The Wettest County in the World, and even several projects that Paul Thomas Anderson has on the table, including a religious drama starring Phillip Seymour Hoffman. Now she’s very pointedly going after an established franchise with one of the biggest names in the world attached.
Personally, I liked her better when she was using her money to help out people like Anderson and Hillcoat. Is there anybody who thinks another Terminator movie with a too-old-to-be-a-cyborg Schwarzenegger is a good idea? I mean, Terminator 3 was decent, but forgettable, and Arnie was even looking too long in the tooth to play the role back then. Maybe the only fun moment in Terminator Salvation at all was when the cyborg that was digitally created to look like a young Schwarzenegger made his presence felt, but that was just for a brief second; such shenanigans wouldn’t work if stretched out for an entire film. Is there an inch of this mythos that hasn’t already been mined and explored, and mostly in disappointing fashion? Please, Megan, go find out what somebody like Alexander Payne wants to do next, and give him a bunch of money to get it started. And let Schwarzenegger continue to take roles appropriate to an aging man. Leave my memories of T2 alone; you’re barking up the same financially unstable tree as every other production company out there. Or, you know, buy the rights to Terminator and probably make a bajillion dollars with another sequel. What do I know? [Deadline El Dorado]