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James Cameron Is Taking Back the Reigns of the ‘Terminator’ Franchise

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With James Cameron caught in an endless loop of Avatar rumors and delays, it’s become fashionable for some fans to treat the director like a Hollywood has-been. I don’t get it. Even if you think the original Avatar is a hollow mess of special effects, it’s still a fun entry in Cameron’s ‘Soldiers vs. Monsters’ filmography. Are we so awash in incredible action directors that we can afford to dismiss Cameron’s eye for spectacle and clean action sequences? I think not.

So consider me pumped that James Cameron is set to return to the Terminator franchise. According to an exclusive piece in Deadline, Cameron  —  who will regain a large chunk of his control of the Terminator franchise in 2019  —  has already started conversations with Deadpool director Tim Miller about directing a “reboot and conclusion” to his original Terminator and Terminator 2 films. The article also notes that producer David Ellison has engaged a handful of science-fiction writers to workshop potential story ideas for the conclusion to Cameron’s Terminator trilogy.

Since time travel already an integral part of the Terminator franchise, it wouldn’t come as a surprise if Cameron and company decided to simply retcon Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Terminator Salvation, Terminator Genisys, and Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles right out of existence and treat the next Terminator movie as the closing chapter of a trilogy. That could also mean a return for original cast members other than Arnold Schwarzenegger, opening the door for Michael Biehn and Linda Hamilton to make a movie worth their salt.

There is one reason for concern, however. While fans will likely be excited to hear Tim Miller’s name involved with the project, the franchise has not exactly been kind to its directors over the past decade. Despite directing big-budget Terminator sequels, both Jonathan Mostow and McG have fallen out of favor in Hollywood in the intervening years. Still, how is Miller supposed to say no if James Cameron himself singles him out to direct the next film? I’ve never so much as picked up a movie camera in my life, but if Cameron asked me to direct Terminator 3.2, you’d better believe I’d give it my best shot.

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