Movies | September 27, 2017 12:55 pm

James Cameron Unveils a ‘Terminator’ Made For the 21st Century

Hollywood Reporter writes that in doing so, he is 'sounding the alarm on AI.'

Filmmaker James Cameron will remake Terminator
Filmmaker James Cameron speaks onstage at the 2016 Rolex Awards For Enterprise at the Dolby Theatre on November 15, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Rolex Awards for Enterprise )

James Cameron will be making a Terminator movie for the era of drones, bots, and “artificial intelligence-fueled anxiety,” reports The Hollywood ReporterMegan Ellison, who acquired the rights for the film in 2011 at an auction for $20 million, has convinced Cameron to reboot the franchise.

For the past year, Ellison, 34, has been secretly working with Cameron and Deadpool’s Tim Miller, who will direct the film. The so-far untitled film will be released July 26, 2019, reports The Hollywood Reporter, and will be written by David Goyer, Charles Eglee, Josh Friedman and Justin Rhodes as well as Ellison. Cameron comes in once a week, writes The Hollywood Reporter. They have written what they hope is the equivalent of the new Star Wars trilogy.

Cameron and Miller joined The Hollywood Reporter’s editorial director Matthew Belloni on Sept. 19 to discuss the new film.

Cameron said that there is a “pride of authorship in anything you do.” He said it made sense to see if he could make these movies relevant, and he “got excited about the idea of finding a story that made sense for now,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. 

The movies will be a continuation of the stories from Terminator 1 and 2. The other films will be “a bad dream.”

Cameron told The Hollywood Reporter that technology has always scared him but also always seduced him. He thinks the machines have already won (in a different way than maybe some movies predicted) and the proof is just looking at people on their phones.

“The technology is becoming a mirror to us as we start to build humanoid robots and as we start to seriously build AGI — general intelligence — that’s our equal,” he said to The Hollywood Reporter. 

Meanwhile, Miller said that he doesn’t think AI’s agenda will be to kill humanity, but that “they’ll be better than us.” Cameron agreed, saying at the very least, they will reflect humanity’s best and worst qualities, since we are the ones making them. The two outcomes he sees are that we teach AI greed or to kill, and neither of those is a good outcome in his mind.

Original stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton will be coming back. Miller said that it is important for Hamilton to come back because “as strong a character as she was, as meaningful as she was to gender and to action stars everywhere, I think it’s going to make a huge f***ing statement to have her be the really seasoned warrior that she’s become.”

But the two also say that it is important to “hand off the baton to a new generation of characters.” Schwarzenegger and Hamilton’s characters will anchor the story, but there will be new characters that will be the centerpiece.