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Terminator: Dark Fate Director Didn't Want to De-Age Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger as Carl in Terminator Dark Fate

Tim Miller has revealed that Arnold Schwarzenegger will not be digitally de-aged for November's Terminator: Dark Fate. The upcoming sixth film in the Terminator franchise will mark the series' second reboot after 2015's Terminator: Genysis. Whereas that film started the series continuity over while also serving as a retelling of sorts of the first two movies in the franchise, Dark Fate is set to retcon the series by picking up where Terminator 2: Judgment Day left off. However, Dark Fate is even more notable for marking the return of Linda Hamilton to her iconic role of Sarah Connor, a fact emphasized quite heavily in the film's marketing campaign.

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Dark Fate will also see Arnold Schwarzenegger return to his signature role of the T-800, but far less is known about what his role entails. Thus far, the trailers have been relatively conservative in the quantity of Arnold footage shown, with the focus being placed upon the returning Linda Hamilton and other new female characters. Nevertheless, he's sure to be a strong presence in Dark Fate, and what has been seen of him in the trailers - along with the fact that his Terminator will be named "Carl" and selling draperies - clearly points to this being a very different T-800 from what audiences have seen before. Despite this, director Tim Miller has made clear that the digital de-aging software that has been put to use in many recent blockbusters will not be utilized in Dark Fate.

Related: Terminator: Dark Fate's New Villain Rev 9 Explained

Speaking to Men's Health, Miller emphasized his point about the authenticity of Schwarzenegger's look in the film, stating “I didn’t want to do a digital Arnold, that’s for f--k sure." Miller further explained that, “We’re [embracing] the reality of what it means to be a person of a certain age who is called upon to be heroic." AdditionallyMiller felt that, at age 73, Schwarzenegger's current look possessed a "regalness" unique from his bodybuilding days.

With Linda Hamilton's return as Sarah Connor, Dark Fate is certainly set to be populated by numerous elder statesmen of the Terminator franchise. On top of Hamilton and Schwarzenegger's return, Dark Fate will also see Edward Furlong reprise his role of John Connor, though he hasn't been seen in any of the marketing materials, and the extent of his role in the film is not clear. Additionally, Dark Fate is also set to be the first R-rated Terminator film since Terminator 3.

Digital de-aging has become increasingly commonplace in movies dealing with period settings or science-fiction premises, with the 90's-set superhero film Captain Marvel putting it to especially extensive use in de-aging Samuel L. Jackson and Clark Gregg. Schwarzenegger's face had also previously been digitally imposed on the bodies of stunt doubles for 2009's Terminator: Salvation, when he was still serving as Governor of California, and in Terminator: Genysis for a fight scene between the T-800 sent back to 1984 and the heroic Terminator of the film named "Pops" by a young Sarah Connor.

For a series whose premise is based around time-travel, it's a bit ironic that its latest entry will sidestep the rise of digital de-aging tech. It also further indicates that any time-travel that takes place is unlikely to involve Schwarzenegger, Hamilton, or any of the film's other protagonists. Nevertheless, although de-aging has been much more frequently utilized among recent blockbusters, fans of the series can now rest assured that when it comes to Arnold Schwarzenegger's look in Terminator: Dark Fate, what you see is what you get.

Next: What Terminator 6's "Dark Fate" Title Reveals About The Sequel's Story

Source: Men's Health

Key Release Dates
  • Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) release date: Nov 01, 2019
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