April 30th, 2004
TERMINATOR 3 SCRIPT REVIEW HITS WEB
I really liked James Cameron's script for T2, but at the same time I felt it was a little silly at moments. It is my understanding that the big man himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger, had as much to do with that as anyone. At that point in his career in 1991, he probably wanted to play a good guy and who did not kill as many people in the movie. Boy oh boy. The original TERMINATOR movie was an extremely violent, dark film and at times frightening. T2 had a completely different tone, look and feel. With sequels that tends to happen. But anyway, T2 was still a good flick and very successful.
TERMINATOR 2 is written by the masterful James Cameron, who for my money is a screenwriter first and a filmmaker second. His writing is very solid and seems to always be a very intricate part of each film's success. It's not just the action or high concepts that carry his films, it's the writing.
When word started spreading about T3 and T4, I really could have cared less. Schwarzenegger swore he wouldn't do anything without Cameron -- who said he was done with the cyborg series. Sequels that do not have the original writer or director or star involved are set up for failure. Look no further than SPEED 2.
At least one or more of those three elements has to return for the next film to have any hope of success. For the Terminator series, Schwarzenegger was the key. With him they have the star of the film back. Though his star is shinning less these days it was still a major coup to get him onboard. And, if rumors about Ridley Scott being interested are true, the big name director that is needed to replace someone like Cameron will then be solved. So, all that would be left is to get the best dang screenwriter money can buy.
With that in mind I'm thinking Well, right off the bat you think Andy and Larry Wachowski (THE MATRIX), but that's not realistic obviously. So how about someone like Ronald Shushett (TOTAL RECALL, ALIEN). The guy has a working relationship with Arnold, and he's a great writer. Or maybe John Logan, he did some great rewrite work on GLADIATOR and is now working on STAR TREK X. He is an under-rated screenwriter. Follow him with some tweaking by Frank Darabont (THE GREEN MILE), and you can't help but have a great Sci-fi action script with some warm fuzzy moments (which Arnold will probably demand), and great dialogue -- or "one-liners," as Schwarzenegger would say.
So what do they do? They find a nobody. The first draft of the script has been penned by Tedi Sarafian. Producers Mario Kassar and Andrew G. Vajna are the brains behind this move. Sarafian is an interesting choice for the project to say the least. His credits include, gasp, TANK GIRL, among others. Of all of the films he has worked on, the highest rating I found in the Internet Movie Database was a 4.8 out of ten. Yikes!
Just recently it was rumored that the villain, the badass who is sent back in time yet again by the machines to kill John Conner, will be none other than a highly advanced female Terminator, a T-1G to be exact. Okay, well, they better get one of those f-ing hulkabitches from the World Wrestling Federation to play her then. C'mon, this T-1G sounds like a disaster to me.
But low and behold, a script review hits the web. It looks like I might have been too quick in my judgment, as AICN's Mysterio has checked in with his thoughts on the script -- which is awesome. How strong is Sarafian on Sci-fi action writing was disconcerting for me. But do not fear, according to Mysterio the script seems to be working (from the review):
"It's a shame that for whatever reason Cameron doesn't want to be involved in completing his cyborg trilogy, but the script looks in pretty good shape, with only needing some polishing and tweaking in places here and there. It's a huge film, that feels a lot like "T2" in the chase and fight sequences but adds the element of Skynet's early origins to the mix. Sarafian is clearly a fan of the films, so it's neither insulting nor disappointing to fans of the series, especially those of the last one."http://www.aintitcoolnews.com/display.cgi?id=7181