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James Cameron to Explain WHY the Terminator Looks Like Arnold Schwarzenegger

James Cameron to Explain WHY the Terminator Looks Like Arnold Schwarzenegger

Personally, I like when a film is vague and leaves things unexplained. Movies are picture stories and (typically) the less said, the better. Over the course of five Terminator films, it’s never been explained as to why the time traveling machine looks like franchise star Arnold Schwarzenegger. I’ve also never cared. In fact, I think it’s pretty obvious and doesn’t even need explaining…unless of course, the filmmakers needed an excuse to bring Schwarzenegger back for yet another sequel. Oh, wait, they are!

Just yesterday Schwarzenegger confirmed that not only is he starring in Terminator 6, being produced by creator James Cameron and directed by Deadpool‘s Tim Miller, but filming is scheduled to begin as early as March 2018.

In a new interview, Cameron reveals that it’s always been on his mind as to why the Terminator looks like Schwarzenegger and he hopes to explain it all in the forthcoming sequel.

“Yeah, you got to ask yourself, ‘Why did they make these characters look and sound like Arnold?’ There has to be a reason,” explained Cameron as an event promoting the 3-D release of his Terminator 2: Judgment Day. “So yeah, it has flashed through my mind that there has to have been a prototype. There has to have been a guy who’s DNA was harvested from – that they grew the organic outer layer that they grew the Terminator from…and that presumably was a real person at some point. Now, the question is, did that person have some sort of meaning to Skynet on WHY they chose that one? Or was it like a whole rack of Terminators and the one that happened to be the Arnold model just happened to be closest to the door going out to the time displacement center and all the others looked different? I’ve asked myself these questions but it’s never been resolved…so stay tuned! We’re talking pretty seriously now about doing some new Terminator films or possibly a trilogy and you’ll just have to see what surfaces in those.

I think Cameron has proven he deserves the benefit of the doubt and that he’s going to find a unique, new, and exciting way to explain the look of the Terminators. I just pray it’s not as simple as Schwarzenegger being the “closest to the door.”



  • john

    I know, I know.. It’s a deleted scene but Terminator 3 actually did raise this topic. The look of the T-800 is modeled off volunteer Sgt. William Candy (played by Schwarzenegger w/ a dubbed over southern twang) and the voice came from a meek scientist (dubbed over by Schwarzenegger saying, “We can fix it,” when someone objects to the southern twang).

    So one of Cameron’s big ideas for the franchise is addressing something that was DELETED from TERMINATOR 3 of all things. Ugh.

    • Brando

      Was going to say the same thing.

      • john

        I’m sure a lot of us were. It’s a memorable deleted scene. Funny on its own. Would’ve hurt the film, I think.

        And I’m someone who lets T3 squeak by as a trilogy ender (a much lesser chapter, of course) simply due to the ending. However, if they pushed the comedy any further than they did, I’m not sure audiences would’ve gone for it.

        • Brando

          That ending was aces!

          • John Connor

            It was like an unexpected punch in the gut.
            Didn’t see it coming at all.

          • Brando

            Exactly why it worked so well!

    • pablitonizer

      OMG didn’t know about that hahaha thanks for bringing it up

    • Chrissy Edwards

      As soon as I saw the title of this article, I was like, they already answered that! I forgot it was a deleted scene, though. Sounds like it’s going to be a similar story, just like Bishop or Data.

    • lion7718

      • HalesTales

        Thank goodness they deleted that. That was cringeworthy.

  • Jada Maes

    A better explanation than Sgt. Candy was Dieter Von Rossbach from some of the tie in novels. Ex-CIA agent selected by Skynet because of his physical power.

  • The chicken man

    Kind of like how the Bishop android was based of the creator,
    (Alien 3).

  • Tronald Dump

    But they don’t all look like Arnold… In the first film when Kyle is describing the future and a terminator attacks the human hideout, that one did not look like Arnold.

  • Daniel Anderson

    Not all of them were supposed to look like Arnold.

    *Spoiler Alert*

    In T2 in one of the sequences to show back into the past, there was a cybernetic organism, which had living tissue over metal exoskeleton, that did not look like Arnold who was essentially infiltrating the human compound to kill as many as he could. I believe this was when Sara and Kyle were sleeping under the bridge. Then in Terminator 3 it was said they recreated the Arnold version to appeal to John Connors feels from the history created in T2, that specific T-850 cybernetic organism actually killed John Connor, then was reprogrammed by his wife Kate Brewster in order to go back and Save both john and the future wife. This was also elaborated on in the game Terminator 3 Redemption just after the skinned T-850 kills John Connor just before Kate Brewster reprogrammed the terminator. In the Terminator Salvation they merely used Arnolds likeness but who the hell doesn’t love a good cameo.

    • GunsOfNavarone

      I think you’re mistaken, the infiltrator is the earlier model and Kyle Reese says they were easy to spot because of their artificial rubber skin. So in that context it wasn’t living tissue over metal endo, the T-800 line was the first to incorporate it.

      • Daniel Anderson

        In the dream sequence I mentioned you’ll see the dogs at the entrance, and after the entity enters the area the dogs start going crazy which catches Kyle Reeses attention away from Sara Connors picture (which was telling me that was what they were trained to do) and then all hell breaks loose. The terminator also focus fires the dogs at one point which significance, although could’ve been an oversight, is that the terminators main goal was to kill humans, why care about dogs?

        The only indication that it was spotted, in the dream sequence/memory I mentioned, was the dogs barking. The dogs barked both at Arnolds character as well as the T-1000 (Scene where Max is going crazy while the adoptive “mother” is on the phone trying to get John home just before the T-1000 cuts into the adoptive fathers head, through the milk carton no less).

        From terminator salvation they had that really funky looking T-600 that was crushed by teh rubble by Kyle Reese, I believe this is what had the rubber skin.

        IMO I still wish they would’ve went back to the futuristic Laser tech that was showed off in the first and second movie dream sequences. Although the comics also had mostly conventional arms in use during the future.

        • John Connor

          Wasn’t the future laser tech in Genisys?

          • Daniel Anderson

            Genisys is the only one I haven’t watched. I’m going to have to watch it now.

          • John Connor

            Genisys is fucking awesome fun.
            The people that bashed it are retards.

          • Daniel Anderson

            Watched it last night. Not a huge fan of them trying to pull the brain teaser stuff. However I will say the futuristic depictions were in fact awesome, I want to see more of that, pretty bad. Although I did have the “but what about…” throughout the movie, it was super fun and it answered some of its own questions that Genysis brought about. New Reese was a bit more of a sissy than Bein brought to the role. But overall it’ll be something I rewatch as I have T2. Old Arnold is still awesome Arnold.

            Although one unforgivable issue I had was not bringing back CGI Bill Paxton as one of the punks.

          • John Connor

            My favorite thing was the whole Sarah-Pops dynamic.
            It was a brilliant idea to have the person we know who hates the terminators the most be raised by one.

            I could see a movie or tv series based around Pops raising Sarah.
            Pops just embarrassing her: “Sarah, stay away from that boy, he’s not Kyle Reese.”
            Pouring a bucket of ice on her boyfriend (after seeing this human behavior from a high school football game) , “You need to cool down. Things are getting too heated.”
            “Sarah, you’re bleeding. We need to get you medical help immediately. ”
            “No,Pops, it’s fine, it’s normal. “

          • Daniel Anderson

            The “take care of my little girl” comment was akin to the thumbs up in the molten steel in T2. Always love the good one liners.

        • GunsOfNavarone

          No dude, I appreciate what you’re trying to say but Kyle Reese says it to Sarah… they were easy to spot, he’s narrating the flashback. The infiltrator that is sent in kills the dogs because they are the most likely to smell something that isn’t familiar, dogs have a much more heightened sense of smell so could maybe smell the rubber and/or maybe the chassis (if we’re talking semantics). The T600 you reference is the first line of the rubber skin terminators yes, it doesn’t mention what model the infiltrators are but the T800 is still the first living tissue model which is why John Connor is so shocked when he finds the factory assembly line making them in Salvation.

          • Daniel Anderson

            Was theorized it was because the dogs could hear the systems to control the terminators movements, all the suspension and the like, that humans can’t hear while it was under the flesh. It certainly looked more human than the T-600 in salvation. And yes, the arnold in salvation was the first cybernetic organism. Considering how young Kyle Reese was in Salvation, it can be assumed that what transpired in salvation was long before the dream sequence/memory and even the story narrated by Kyle Reese regarding the T600 with rubber/latex skin. Which is why they had to rely on the K9’s so much instead of being able to eye them. So effectively we have salvation, kyle reeses dream and story explaining the difference between T600 and T800 CyberOrg and even explaining about the dogs, and then we see the first CyberOrg in salvation. Hell even the T1000 set off the dogs (Max) . Seems clear cut.

    • John Connor

      And also all the terminators we see in The Sarah Connor Chronicles.

      • Daniel Anderson

        Thank you for your service in the fight for humanity. Didn’t watch sarah connor chronicles. I haven’t actually watched TV for longer than a weekend since ~2007, only watch it when I go to peoples houses that have one. But once OLED’s get cheaper…

        • John Connor

          The TV series is phenomenal and better than the already superb films.

  • GunsOfNavarone

    Why is it that 80s/90s directors are returning to their earlier work demystifying things that don’t need explaining? You would think that Ridley Scott’s escapades with Prometheus would serve as an example of why not to do this. Rather than staple on another pointless back tread to a series of movies that have become gradually worse, they should just reboot the entire thing but this time start it with the future war. Make some good casting decisions, get a good writer, good director and take it from there.

    • J Jett

      Guns, i agree 100%. 🙂

  • Russell Reball

    One of the deleted scenes in Terminator 3 has a comic reference to the accent being chosen. Made me laugh out loud.

    • Danny Joseph

      I remember that! Didn’t he have some southern accent or something when he was walking around?

    • Kaijudude

      That was actually true , the Sgt. Candy scene. They were planning to use him as the template for the t-800. it’s on youtube.

  • John Connor

    My guess is that Arnold will be an old scientist obsessed with immortality, using his own skin cells or his own body to regenerate younger skin or even clone himself creating supersoldiers that can be used to replace old parts of himself, piece by piece.

  • chris hayes

    I take it JC is ignoring Terminator 3 – shame cause it was quite good ( not great ) so really this new Terminator movie will be the true Terminator 3……

  • Matty Ice 2016

    Nobody cares.

  • moebius2249

    Is he going to write it?

  • Jonny Angel

    I would say that the reason the Terminators look like Arnold is because his character is a prisoner who has been captured by Cyberdine and is being kept alive.. Arnold was with the resistance early on and was captured by Cyberdine and they used his likeness to make Terminators.. .. simple enough reason

    • HalesTales

      I love that! Imagine if we could see the resistance breaking human Arnold out of the prison then have that Arnold kill one of his Terminator counterparts.

      • Jonny Angel

        I have always thought of this scenario since I have seen the Terminator movies.. Why else would the Terminators be made in Arnold’s image. He is a prisoner of Cyberdine.. Makes perfect sense to me. They would not have to deage Arnie with CGI, etc,.. It would work. I think it is time to send the movies into the future and stay there. It would be different to have one of the movies fully set in the future instead of giving us glimpses of it for a few minutes.. and no idiot Christian Bale in anything Terminator related and no Courtney Jai of all people.. People complain about such a small cutey named Emilia Clarke.. Shit, it was Courtney Jai that ruined Genisys. That guy cant act for crap and ruins every movie he is in.. IE : Die Hard : A Good Day To Die Hard.. It would have been better if someone else played Jack McClane

  • Evan3

    I was going to give a full-throated and long-winded objection, but I think my sentiments can best be expressed in one word…. “ugh”

  • Han Rasmussen

    I’ve said it many times, I feel the right direction is to abandon the time travel plots —it was only used the first time because Cameron didn’t have the budget to do his vision of a future war justice, and the second time was just a bigger faster version of the first plot. The real meat of the Terminator is the future war sequences from the first film. Those few minutes of film were more intense than most other films combined.

    I’d do an R-rated cable television series set in that future. The sky is always black, except where it’s cut by searchlights or plasma bolts. Everything is rubble and debris and salvage, and the main military base of the human resistance is what’s left of what was once an underground parking garage. The survivors live like rats in the tunnels, every time you go topside there’s a good chance you won’t come back. Nobody remembers what the sun looks like, or nature, or how it feels to be full or warm or comfortable or not frightened and oh so tired. Rat stew is -always- what’s for dinner. A mercifully flat stretch of concrete is your bed. The only thing that keeps the soldier of the future from swallowing his own rifle barrel is sheer, stubborn defiance and desire to do as much damage to the metal motherfuckers as possible before he dies.

    Cameron likes his Vietnam metaphors, the series would be perfect for that —except the human resistance are the Vietcong. Living in tunnels, starving, dirty, desperate, but wiry and crafty. Always figuring out ways to sabotage and disrupt and outwit the vastly superior technological foe. Salvaging their wrecks and repurposing everything they can get their hands on, observing the enemy’s patterns and laying traps and countering coldly logical operating procedures with chaotic unpredictability. Moving, striking, hiding, changing their tactics faster than the enemy can adapt. The rats are fighting the tigers, and against all odds they’re actually kind of winning, but the cost in lives is obscene. So many have died, so many more will die, and the suffering and destruction is so overwhelming that the victory isn’t worth much and the living have come to envy the dead.

    But still, they fight. Because the only other option is to lay down and die, and though that would in many ways be better, they won’t give the machines the satisfaction. The mechanical bastards are going to have to earn human extinction the hard way, and every last human will die with a final “fuck you” on her lips. We will die fighting.

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