Warner Nabs Terminator 4 aka Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins

Oh boy, that sure is a long name. Word from Variety is that Warner Bros. has acquired North American rights to distribute the upcoming Terminator 4 movie, now officially saddled with the cumbersome and entirely superfluous title of, “Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins”. Yes, it didn’t sound good the first time I heard it, and it didn’t sound good the next five times I said it to myself, either. But in any case, Warner beat out MGM for rights to the film, which has been fast-tracked for an early 2008 production start date and a Summer 2009 release date. This is expected to be the first in an anticipated trilogy that will spin the Terminator franchise off into an entirely new direction, away from the Connor clan.

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A screenplay has been completed by “Terminator 3″ scribes John Brancato and Michael Ferris, and the financiers and studio are close to locking a director. While industry buzz has “Charlie’s Angels” director McG as the odds-on favorite for the assignment, the producers said no final decision had yet been made.

The first two “Terminator” films, directed by James Cameron, used contemporary settings to pit Sarah and John Connor against indestructible cyborgs. “T3″ was also set in the present day and ended just as the machines initiated a nuclear apocalypse. “Terminator Salvation” was deliberately not given a number after its title, because Halcyon is eager to make it clear that the fourth film heads into an entirely different setting.

“This is set in the future, in a full-scale war between Skynet and humankind,” Anderson told Daily Variety.
More than one option

Borman said: “The third film was really the conclusion of what happened in the ‘now.’ You will find the most-loved characters, but the intention here is to present a fresh new world and have this be the first of a trilogy.”

And the possibility that Arnold will “be back”?

The producers said it wasn’t yet clear whether Arnold Schwarzenegger will be back for his fourth appearance in the franchise that launched his movie career. “T3″ was the last film in which he starred before becoming governor of California.

“We’ve left it open for him to maybe do a cameo,” Borman said. “He has an important job, as we know, and the final decision will be based on his desire and availability, along with what the director wants.”

Arnold shouldn’t come back. At this point, it’s not necessary, and would only be superfluous. (There’s that word again…)

Terminator 4 aka Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins