Do Pending Lawsuits Mean No Terminator 5?

Published 6 years ago by , Updated August 19th, 2009 at 11:31 am,

terminator 5 Do Pending Lawsuits Mean No Terminator 5?

Just a couple weeks after we reported that McG was prepping Terminator 5, it appears that the film may be dead in the water. According to a number of sources, a proposed sequel to this year’s underwhelming Terminator: Salvation may be out of the question due to a legal dispute between The Halcyon Co. (which own the rights to the Terminator franchise) and Pacificor (a Santa Barbara, California-based hedge fund that helped Halcyon buy the franchise).

As explained in the L.A. Times, The Halcyon Co., which is headed by Derek Anderson and Victor Kubicek, has filed two separate $30M lawsuits against the company (one against Pacificor and one against a former Pacificor employee).

What’s all the litigation about?

I’m glad you asked, because it’s a little complicated. The lawsuits stem back to April 2007, when Pacificor first issued Halycon a $30M loan to acquire the rights to Terminator. In December of 2007, Pacificor provided an additional $5M bridge loan to Halcyon. This month, Pacificor filed a lien against Dominion Group (a subsidiary of Halcyon, which is also operated by Anderson and Kubicek) for the $5M loan. According to Anderson and Kubicek, however, they don’t owe a penny. According to them, Pacificor filed the lien in a “desperate and deliberate attempt to seize ownership and control of the Halcyon entities and of the ['Terminator'] franchise.”

Juicy stuff, right? The second lawsuit against former Pacificor Vice President Kurt Benjamin is even better. According to that lawsuit, Benjamin committed fraud by knowingly hiding the fact that he was working for Pacificor at the time he was negotiating with Anderson and Kubicek. By not disclosing his relationship with Pacificor, Benjamin was able to negotiate better terms for his company. Anderson and Kubicek also claim in their lawsuit that Benjamin encouraged them to invest in the production of a Terminator Salvation video game which would help ensure that the company “would not be able to meet its obligations and would therefore fall under the total control of Pacificor.” (Not very much faith in the video game, ay?)

The complaint also alleges, among other things, that Benjamin “blackmailed” Halcyon by forcing the company to pay kickbacks to close its various loans, that Pacificor CEO Andrew Mitchell demanded a $250,000 a year salary to serve on Halcyon’s board, and that fellow Salvation producer Moritz Borman intentionally forced the film over budget so the company would default on its loans.

What does this mean for Terminator 5?

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your opinion of Terminator), because of the lien against Dominion Group, Anderson and Kubicek have been unable to borrow money against their $7.5M producer fees for Terminator: Salvation to begin production on Terminator 5. In fact, according to Variety, T. Asset Acquisition (the Halcyon subsidiary which owned the Terminator rights) has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Because the Chapter 11 filing comes only one day after Halcyon filed its two lawsuits, it seems like a pretty sure sign that the company will not retain the rights to the franchise.

Does this mean there will be no Terminator 5 ever? Of course not! It’s Hollywood, and in Hollywood there’s nothing better than a franchise. It’s impossible to speculate exactly when a Terminator sequel could come out or what it could be about until this litigation is resolved. However, assuming that Pacificor wins the rights to Terminator as collateral for Halcyon’s unpaid loans, there’s no reason to suspect that the company would not try and produce their own film. Even though Terminator: Salvation had a hard time finding an audience, the Terminator franchise still has strong value and it would be foolish for Pacificor to simply let it go to waste.

What do you think? Is there still hope for the Terminator franchise?

Source: Variety and L.A. Times

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  1. Salvation will definately get a sequel, if not soon then a few years down the line. Terminator 3 came out years after T2, but of course if they wait long enough, they’ll have to hire a new John Conner (although what else is new?).

    As for the Lawsuits, well, if Pacificor loaned Halcyon the money to acquire the rights to (I assume) make a new Terminator film, that obviously means the films rights actually belong to someone else. Who, I don’t know, but I’m assuming some film studio (or someone with a lot of money). As such, should Halcyon not be able to gain the rights again sometime soon, some other studio should be able to snap them up quick and push out a movie.

    Oh, and Halcyon and Pacificor… have any other real life companies sounded more like fronts for evil organisations?

  2. Just set up a meeting between both parties, get McG hepped up on goofballs, give Bale a bottle of whiskey, send them both in there unexpectedly and film the ensuing merriment. I’d much rather watch that than HKs buzzing the London Eye for no apparent reason.


  4. I live in Santa Barbara! Haha. Anyway, i was dissapointed with Terminator Salvation and I think the franchise should end at 4. No more Terminator movies without James Cameron!

  5. Sad news… let’s hope that they do make a sequel and hopefully it will be better than Salvation. I did like the movie, but I still want to see John Connor taking charge in the post-apocalyptic world (and NOT running in the streets in our time being chased by Terminators, as McG said, I’ve already seen that enough times).

  6. “Do pending lawsuits mean no Terminator 5?”

    We can only hope…

  7. these movies should stay terminated, lol

  8. The series ended with T3. Yes I said it, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines!

  9. very simple wait till 2011 and get the govinator back. Not necessarily for a big role, but maybe an extended cameo. Then sell it back to cameron as sort of a James Cameron prwesents type of thing but have jonah nolan write it and bring someone else on to direct. I know this next thing might get me band from the site but here it goes: T5 directed by arnie himself!!

  10. If the same writers are a part of it then yes it should mean no Terminator 5. If new writers are brought in then I say bring on the fifth movie and keep us in the future. NO PRESENT DAY!

  11. I’m to much of a fan to see it end now, plus wait till dvd the film will eventually find its audience

  12. I haven’t seen T:S yet as I heeded the reviews here and decided to wait for it on DVD. I do hope, however, that the franchise doesn’t end. I hope it continues, but goes back to it’s roots of relying on STORY not SFx. Yes, the effects in the first 2 were part of the charm of the movies, but the stories and the actors are what made them AWESOME films. The last 2 films (and from T:S I am going by previews) seem to rely more on the SFx and WOW factor than the actual story itself. Bring in some good writers, scale back the epicness of it and you can once again have a great Terminator film.

  13. @Vin

    Arnold Schwarzenegger’s directing credits to date:

    # Christmas in Connecticut (1992) (TV)
    # “Tales from the Crypt” (1 episode, 1990)
    … aka “HBO’s Tales from the Crypt”
    – The Switch (1990) TV episode

    Why exactly do you want him to direct a Terminator movie?

  14. I thought Salvation was pretty good, liked Rise of the Machines a lot, and Judgement Day is obviously a classic so I say bring it on. If they stick with the idea of time traveling back 20-30 some odd years ago to when T2 took place and bring back Robert Patrick I think it would be VERY VERY cool.

  15. @tasouli
    why would you want that? So we can see Terminator 2 all over again?

    Btw, have you seen Robert Patrick in a while? He’s looking pretty old.

    I will repeat myself once again. Anyone who wants to bring the terminator franchise to the present instead of the future does not care about continuity and shouldn’t step anywhere near a terminator film.

  16. In my opinion, any future Terminator movies should be in the future with Connor fighting, and finally defeating, Skynet. The next movie can have Skynet sending back the 3 Terminators, and Connor sending back Reese and the 2 Terminators, but the 6th movie should be Connor getting killed and the resistance defeating the machines once and for all. AND BRING BACK CAMERON!!

  17. I enjoyed T4, but I hope we don’t get anymore sequels especially if McG is gonna send HKs back in time.

  18. I say we’re 2 for 2 right now. 2 good ones and 2 bad ones (T1,T2 vs T3 T4). Even steven. Let’s do another one but make it right. Keep MCG away from the franchise, Salvation was a mess (even the soundtrack, which on its own has good songs, pissed me off) The cast did not fit the franchise at all IMO.

    I wish a talented director would gain interest in the Terminator franchise. I remember when Aranofsky said he’ll be doing Robocop I was so excited. That’s what Terminator needs…talent.

  19. Now do people understand Christian Bale’s tirade?

    To go from a class act like Christopher Nolan to

    a dude calls himself “McG”?

    They should somehow incorporate the techno remix of Bale’s tirade into the soundtrack to the next film. And have a whole factory’s worth of Terminator’s dance to it.

    Because they won. Humanity lost.

    THAT’s how this should end.

  20. lol Django

    I wander if the downgrade in quality of the director/crew really did bug the hell out of Bale?

    I still can’t stand his name and will never take him serious until he makes a superb film or CHANGES HIS DAMN NAME. I understand it’s his “nickname” but he said it himself it sounds dumb…why keep it?

    “I realize my name is ridiculous. I was born Joseph McGinty Nichol. McG is short for McGinty. I have been called this since the day I was born to create separation from my Uncle Joe and Grandpa Joe. I realize it sounds like some Hollywood nickname, hip-hop choice. But the truth is, this is simply my name – for every day of elementary school, every zit-filled day of high school. I have been taking s*** for it ever since. I get it, I would think it’s lame too. But it’s just a name, and to change it now would seem fraudulent.”

  21. I think you guys need to remember that McG did not write the script. Yes, he had much to do with how the movie played out but he can only improvise so much when it comes to the script. He can’t really make a bad script better if he doesn’t have control over those things. He wasn’t great as a director for TS but not horrible by any means. I fully blame the writers for the mess that was TS.

  22. Sorry, some other thoughts about his name from other posters:

    “McG is not simply his name. McG is his nickname. Joseph Nichol is simply his name. This guy’s a f**king r**ard.”

    “Ahhh, the old let’s-pretend-I-don’t-like-my-name-but-the-truth-is-that-I-like-it-because-it-looks-cool-in-the-credits bit. Gotta love it”

  23. Here’s my stance on McG.

    He’s NOT a bad director. I loved the look of T4, even if the story was less than stellar. But the thing is, McG had almost nothing to do with the story.

    Now obviously it seems he has some pretty stupid ideas for a fifth movie, so maybe that’s a moot point, but I still hold that T4 did not suck BECAUSE of McG, and there were points in the film that I thought he did a really good job with.

    Bale’s let the success go to his head, so he had the entire story rewritten so that he was the star, and then he gave one of the worst performances of his career. If anyone’s to blame, it’s Bale.

  24. I don’t think the franchise has anything fresh left to say about the interaction of humans and technology. All the man vs. machine, machine becomes man, man becomes machine inversions have been taken care of now. If there’s a fifth Terminator, it needs to move back to its roots and be less a contemplation of the nature of humanity and technology and more of a full-throttle action flick pitting relentless cyborg killers against a small band of humans.

  25. @ Stephen

    The definitely need to bring it back to current day. Terminators in post apocalyptic world just did not work well on screen. Terminators destroying the crap out of modern day LA/NY/etc., sign me up.

    @ Josh R

    I guess we’ll never know the truth. But I don’t think you can blame Bale for everything like that. His performance was actually pretty good. Him and Worthington saved that movie from being a complete mess.

    The script was rewritten by Nolan’s brother, who co wrote Dark Knight. I don’t think the script is to blame either.

    If anything, it’s McG average/below average director skills and some of the supporting cast (Common) was horrible. And ENOUGH with cute little girls/boys in post apocalyptic movies. I thought that that was a distraction and a cliche in this movie.

  26. Like I said before, get someone talented/creative to write it or direct it.

    The best way to revive this franchise is to come up with an interesting Terminator. Liquid Metal was and still is one of the coolest freaking characters in a movie.

    T3 we saw a lazy version of a “new” terminator. T4 had too many machines that were just that, machines.

  27. Yeah should definitely take a lot of the blame for how salvation played out. I do believe he screwed it up but I would have wanted to change it if it really had that original horrible idea of an ending. And it was definitely one of his worst performances.

  28. Goes to show what happens when a popular film franchise goes up for bid and gets sold to a bunch of greedy Hollywood scumbag hacks that want to make a quick buck and then hire the wrong director followed by the wrong actors…

    If Pacificor does retain ownership I’ll bet ya 5 bucks that they sell it off to a major studio to recoup they’re losses. (Imo) They wouldn’t have the rep or the funds to pull off financing T5 on they’re own.
    This is going to drag out for years. I don’t think Terminator 5 will happen for at least 4+ years and if there’s a way Bale will bale out of the project…
    I can’t post exactly what I know about Bale’s position on the franchise. I will say that he wasn’t happy with the outcome…

    So what’s to look forward to,,, another rebooted future war scenario, and a re casted Connor. Yeah,,, Mcg and his producers have taken the Terminator franchise and completely raped what’s left of it.
    Nice Job,,, hope your proud of T4 Mcg…

  29. Man, I want to watch T2 again…

    “I know now why you cry, but it’s something I can never do.”

    Wow, what a great line to end the movie with… And then Sarah Connor, the person who hated Terminators more than anyone, extending her hand to shake his hand, and giving him that nod of approval/respect. That was moving. Can’t wait to see that kind of writing in a Terminator movie again… But it’s not likely to ever happen… Oh well… It’ll suck if T5 is made and it’s another disappointment like it looks to be, then we’ll actually have more bad Terminator movies than good ones. At least now the score is even…

    “If a machine can learn the value of human life, maybe we can too.” *que music*