Terminator 5 has been steadily moving closer to becoming a reality ever since Arnold Schwarzenegger officially got back into the acting game. The former politician (and action movie icon) is currently set to appear in a fifth Terminator pic, should it happen – with Fast and the Furious franchise helmer Justin Lin attached to call the shots on the project.
Rumors about other original Terminator cast members also being attached to a fifth installment in the blockbuster sci-fi series began circling a couple of weeks ago. However, Lin quickly dismissed said speculation, insisting that he and Schwarzenegger were the only people officially working on the film.
Megan Ellison (daughter and heiress to Oracle founder Larry Ellison) and her Annapurna Films production body have now reportedly beaten out the likes of Lionsgate in an auction for the screen rights to both Terminator 5 and Terminator 6. Deadline has pointed out that since Ellison made the bid without a studio yet attached to distribute a fifth Terminator pic, it could feasibly become “the hottest title in the [Cannes] sales market.”
Ellison began her production career off with a bang by providing financing for last year’s True Grit; she has been highly active since then, moving on to secure deals to work behind the scenes on P.T. Anderson’s next film (formerly known as The Master) and Katherine Bigelow’s Kill Bin Laden project. So her grabbing the rights to a fifth Terminator flick only increases the likelihood of the film being made sooner rather than later.
Where exactly Terminator 5 will go (with regards to plot) is an unsettled matter for the time being. Lin previously suggested that although he likely won’t be going the reboot route with the film, “[The 'Terminator' franchise] does have that capability, finding fresh ways of going back without destroying other [movies], because you can tell your own stories” – a reference to the series’ heavy use of time-travel as a plot device to “reset” its narrative continuity, so to speak.
In its report, Deadline also mentioned that “the expectation is the Skynet storyline will be wrapped up in [the next two 'Terminator' movies].” Whether that means there are plans to essentially round out the new, post-Judgement Day trilogy that Terminator: Salvation was meant to kick off – or that Lin and Schwarzenegger are planning a Terminator 5 set in an alternate present where Skynet has not yet become self-aware – is up in the air right now.
While we’ve largely been a member of the anti-Terminator 5 camp up to this point, the project is not completely without potential. The Skynet storyline (in its current state) has not yet been resolved in a satisfying fashion, so the idea that a fifth (and, possibly, sixth) Terminator movie could offer some additional closure on the matter sounds a bit more promising.
Expect to hear more about the progress of Terminator 5 in the near future.