2015 is shaping up to be one of the biggest years in cinematic history when it comes to high profile franchises. From Batman and Superman going head-to-head, to sequels of the #1 and #3 biggest movies of all-time in Avatar 2 and The Avengers: Age of Ultron, respectively, the relaunch of Fantastic Four, the next James Bond, Mission: Impossible and Pirates of the Caribbean installments, adaptations of two of the biggest video game properties in Assassin’s Creed and Warcaft, and of course, Star Wars: Episode VII.

But what would a big year of sci-fi, fantasy and action be without Arnold Schwarzenegger? The man most well-known as the Terminator returns to his career-defining role in the untitled Terminator 5 as the killer machine from the future, and directing him may be Alan Taylor.

Alan Taylor is currently in the final stretch of post-production on Thor: The Dark World for Marvel Studios, his first major feature film in a decade after years of work on critically acclaimed TV series, most notably Game of Thrones.

After Annapurina Films (Zero Dark Thirty, Lawless) picked up the rights to the Terminator license for multiple features over two years ago, Justin Lin (Fast & Furious series) was tapped to help revive the Terminator franchise after the critically panned Terminator: Salvation, but dropped out due to scheduling issues. Then came confirmation that franchise poster boy Schwarzenegger would return for the franchise relaunch, playing a Terminator unit once again – although we still don’t know how.

Annapurina Films has since teamed Skydance Productions and Paramount Pictures (to distribute) and Terminator 5 (it won’t be called that) was given a production start date of January 2014, with a summer 2015 release date. Now comes word from sources of The Wrap that Alan Taylor has signed to direct the feature, meaning he won’t be back to showrunning Game of Thrones anytime soon. The man’s officially made Hollywood’s A-list of feature directors.

Taylor has a proven talent for world-building with his work on Rome, Game of Thrones – and by all accounts – the Thor sequel, so a post-apocalyptic future is an easy aesthetic for the director to work within, should it play a large part in the film’s timeline. The same can be said for his ability to generate drama, strong character relationships and emotionally gripping scenes – especially when it comes to character deaths.

With one star secured, a director attached, and a script by Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier, expect plenty of additional casting confirmations in the coming months. Will the rumored Dwayne Johnson spearhead the new Terminator trilogy as as new killer robot, fully cementing the passing of the torch from Schwarzenegger to “The Rock”? Or has that already happened?

Terminator 5 releases June 26, 2015.

Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.

Source: The Wrap