The Terminator franchise has had poor luck for a long time. Ever since the critically acclaimed Terminator 2: Judgement Day, the franchise has failed to recapture the magic of the first two films. Or to resonate with audiences at all really. Tim Miller, director of the franchise’s sixth film, Terminator: Dark Fate, spoke about it during the Directors on Directing panel at San Diego Comic-Con, hosted by Collider.
The franchise’s failure to resonate has been the topic of much debate recently, with many suggesting that some sort of franchise fatigue may be a factor. Others believe it’s simply because the last few films weren’t that good. Miller noted that he believed if he simply made a good movie in the series, that it would have been a success. That however proved to be incorrect for reasons that are still speculated about amongst fans.
Dark Fate was indeed a very good film in our opinion, but it was still a commercial failure. A massive one, sadly. And despite it having the recipe for success. Not only did it have Deadpool director Tim Miller at the helm, it had James Cameron returning to the franchise as producer and co-writer (for the first time since T2), and Linda Hamilton returning as Sarah Connor who despite her age was more badass than ever. And on top of everything, it was a direct sequel to T2, therefore retconning T3, Salvation, and Genisys—films that most of the franchise’s fans agree are not that great.
Needless to say, it still failed and Tim Miller likely won’t be involved in any future Terminator films, despite the fact that his movie was actually pretty great. He did suggest however that it could yet have a future as a film franchise if the right director and actors were involved, but also lamented that the franchise may have been explored enough.
The Terminator series may not have many, if any, future live action films but it is far from dead. As we previously reported, there is an anime in the works by Ghost in the Shell studio Production I.G.. And we just found out recently that there is a new open world survival horror video game being developed by Nacon. These are both promising entries. And who knows, they could reinvigorate interest in the franchise as a whole.
I personally believe there is more to explore in the Terminator universe. I think it’s far from exhausted and would love to see more live action films. I’d hate to see them made and then fail again, though, so it would have to be at the right time with the right amount of enthusiasm from audiences for the property. Here’s hoping!