The Internet Gods giveth and Internet Gods taketh away. On Tuesday, Latino Review reported that action icon Arnold Schwarzenegger would re-unite with director James Cameron for Avatar 2. The rumor was that Schwarzenegger would play an evil human general in the upcoming sequels. Now it appears that is not the case.
According to THR, a spokesperson from Twentieth Century Fox denied that Schwarzenegger is up for the part, or even taking meetings. Of course, Schwarzenegger previously worked with Cameron on the original Terminator, sequel Terminator 2: Judgment Day, and the action comedy True Lies.
While it’s certainly plausible that Schwarzenegger would want to work with Cameron again, it looks like it’s not going to happen anytime soon. Schwarzenegger’s acting career took a serious detour while he served two terms as the 38th Governor of California from 2003 to 2011. The Austrian-born actor made his comeback with The Expendables 2 in 2012 and Kim Ji-woon’s American debut feature film The Last Stand in 2013. Landing a key role in Avatar 2 could put the former body builder squarely back on the A-List in Hollywood.
THR also points out Latino Review’s track record when it comes to casting scoops and exclusives. While the website boasts correct early reports with Bradley Cooper as Rocket Raccoon in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, they have yet to be right on any of their Star Wars: Episode VII or Planet Hulk rumors.
Meanwhile, Schwarzenegger is confirmed to reprise his role as a much older looking T-800 in Terminator 5, the first film in a new stand-alone reboot trilogy from Annapurna Pictures (PTA’s The Master, Zero Dark Thirty) and Skydance Productions (Star Trek Into Darkness, World War Z). Writers Laeta Kalogridis (Shutter Island) and Patrick Lussier (Drive Angry) are set to write that film, while Alan Taylor (Thor: The Dark World, Game of Thrones) was recently hired to direct.
As for the Avatar sequels, the screenplays for the three films are currently being written with James Cameron bringing on screenwriters Josh Friedman (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles), Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Rise of the Planet of the Apes), and Shane Salerno (Armageddon, Salinger) to help the Academy Award-winning director bring Pandora back to life. All of the screenwriters Cameron brought in to collaborate all have extensive backgrounds in science fiction. While he’s a great director and sci-fi visionary, the dialogue in his films isn’t the greatest, so it’s a good thing he asked for help.
Production on the Avatar sequels is set to take place at Peter Jackson’s WETA Studios in New Zealand at the beginning of 2014. Fox has yet to announce an official release date for all of the sequels, but insiders expect Avatar 2 to appear around Christmas 2016, Avatar 3 for Christmas 2017, and Avatar 4 for Christmas 2018.