If you happen to be partying in New Orleans right now and you see Arnold Schwarzenegger walking around with part of his face ripped off, don’t worry. You’ve probably just stumbled onto the set of Paramount and Skydance’s Terminator: Genesis, which has officially started the Big Easy portion of its production schedule. Unless, of course, Schwarzenegger actually got into an accident that has nothing to do with the movie. In that case, just call your superiors at Skynet to tell them the threat has been taken care of.
The shot of the very first slate seen above comes from Skydance’s official Facebook page, and sets into motion a return to the central concept that James Cameron unleashed on the world 30 years ago. This isn’t an exact reboot or anything, although the ominous “Reboot initiating” line in the post doesn’t do much to mitigate that rumor. Screenwriters Laeta Kalogridis (Shutter Island) and Patrick Lussier (Drive Angry) have set the franchise’s characters in a parallel universe where events from the initial timeline have gone in a different direction. At least, that’s what I think is going on. The plotline for Terminator 5 has been kept under wraps since the project was first announced, and the main clues fans have to go on are the characters, and the actors who have been chosen to play them.
Zero Dark Thirty‘s Jason Clarke will play Skynet resister John Connor. His mother Sarah is this time played by Game of Thrones‘ Emilia Clarke. To combat Skynet’s John Connor-erasing strategy, John sends Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) back in time to stop the Terminator’s mission. The ages of these characters all seem legit enough to match up with the first film, but then we have Dayo Okeniyi playing Danny Dyson, the son of Skynet creator Miles Dyson (who died in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, and Schwarzenegger’s T-800 is an aged version of the one we’ve seen before. You can hear the former Governator talk about this aging concept in the MTV interview below.
We’re pretty jazzed about Terminator: Genesis, regardless of how it turns out. It already seems like it’ll be less cold than 2009’s Terminator Salvation (and also less Christian Bale-y), and it features a solid supporting cast including Lee Byung-hun (I Saw the Devil), J.K. Simmons (Spider-Man), and Sandrine Holt (Underworld: Awakening). The lengthy production is set to continue until the beginning of August, and you’ll be able to see Terminator: Genesis for yourself when it drives a semi through the front of your local theater on July 1, 2015.