What the Hell Happened to Arnold Schwarzenegger?

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger was an unlikely movie star.  He struggled with the English language and a thick Austrian accent.  His physique made him hard to cast in every-man roles.  And yet, for a time, he was the biggest star in Hollywood.  Eventually, he parlayed his popularity as a film star into a political career.  However, when his political career ended, Schwarzenegger’s Hollywood come-back was derailed by personal scandal.

What the hell happened?

arnie body building

Arnold Schwarzenegger – body building career

Schwarzenegger began body building at a young age.  He moved to the United States as soon as possible to compete on a global level.  As I don’t know anything at all about the sport of body building, I am going to gloss right over this phase of Schwarzenegger’s career.

The important thing is that Schwarzenegger dominated the sport.  And that it brought him to the United States.  But Schwarzenegger wasn’t satisfied with being the most famous body builder of all times.  He wanted to conquer Hollywood as he had the world of body building.

arnie - hercules

Arnold Schwarzenegger – Hercules in New York -1969

Schwarzenegger’s first film role was in the low-budget fantasy film, Hercules in New York.  Schwarzenegger was credited as “Arnold Strong” since his real name was thought to be too long for Americans to remember.  Schwarzenegger’s accent was so think that all of his dialogue was dubbed over.

It was an inauspicious start.  But it was a start.

Arnie - The Long Goodnight

Arnold Schwarzenegger – The Long Goodbye – 1973

Next, Schwarzenegger played a deaf-mute hitman in Robert Altman’s neo noir film, The Long Goodbye.

As a role that required him to be big without requiring him to speak, it played to all of his strengths while avoiding his obvious weaknesses.

arnie Stay-Hungry

Arnold Schwarzenegger – Stay Hungry – 1976

In 1976, Schwarzenegger co-starred opposite Jeff Bridges and Sally Field in the Bob Rafelson’s body building drama, Stay Hungry.

Schwarzenegger didn’t exactly have to stretch as an actor.  He played an Austrian body builder named Joe Santo who is training for the Mr. Universe competition.  Despite the fact that he was basically playing himself, Schwarzenegger won a Golden Globe for “Best Acting Debut in a Motion Picture”.

This is especially odd since Stay Hungry was technically Schwarzenegger’s third film.  But since his dialogue was dubbed over in Hercules and he played a dead/mute in The Long Goodbye, Stay Hungry was the first film in which Schwarzenegger’s voice could be heard.

Next: Pumping Iron


Posted on December 2, 2012, in Movies, What the Hell Happened?, WTHH Actor and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 271 Comments.

  1. One can only hope.


  2. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s quote of “I think gay marriage should be between a man and a woman” makes WatchMojo’s list of Another Top 10 Dumb Things Said by Celebrities


  3. From ‘Twins’ To ‘Maggie,’ The Reinvention of Arnold Schwarzenegger:

    By Mike Ryan • 05.07.15 #Arnold Schwarzenegger

    For the longest time, my favorite Arnold Schwarzenegger film was Twins. Now, I had seen movies like Terminator and Predator (and probably even The Running Man) more times — those movies seemed to have a longer cable television lifespan — but Twins always made me happy. It made me happy because here’s Schwarzenegger, known at that point only for bodybuilding and action movies, trying to make a comedy. He was really trying, and I’ve always had a soft spot when someone is trying something different.

    Twins, only Ivan Reitman’s second movie after Ghostbusters, was on cable recently and, watching it for the first time in a few years, we now kind of take Schwarzenegger’s charm for granted, but this was a new thing in 1988. It was only after Twins that Schwarzenegger’s action films were integrated with real humor. Retroactively, some of the lines in his earlier films became funnier, now that we kind of knew Schwarzenegger was in on the joke. But that was only after that he was being written funnier parts; Schwarzenegger’s Terminator in Judgment Day is a much funnier killer robot than the killer robot from the first film.

    Looking back, maybe Twins wasn’t that big of a risk. If it would have failed, I suspect Terminator 2: Judgment Day would have still happened. But it would have been embarrassing for Schwarzenegger, proving he was nothing but a one trick pony. And, sure, people accuse him of that anyway, but he is legitimately funny in Twins and it’s a shame he didn’t do more straightforward comedies that weren’t Kindergarten Cop (more of an action-comedy) or weren’t schlock like Junior (which is almost not a comedy, despite the premise) and Jingle All the Way.

    Schwarzenegger’s return to acting since his stint as the governor of California has not gone particularly well. (And it’s still a little weird; could you imagine if Reagan left office and just started making movies with monkeys again?) There’s nothing particularly memorable about The Last Stand or Sabotage, and Expendables 3 — the only film of the three in which Schwarzenegger plays a large role in the film — made the least amount of money of the three Expendables movies. (Escape Plan, another movie in which Schwarzenegger played second fiddle to Stallone, was a modest hit.) Worst of all, Schwarzenegger isn’t really trying. He’s acting like an athlete returning from an injury who just wants to ease back into things before actively trying to push himself. To this point, Schwarzenegger’s strategy has pretty much been to show up and look at the camera as if he’s saying, “Hey, it’s me! Can you believe I’m back? Well, believe it, because here I am.”

    This narrative changes with the release of Maggie, a movie in which Schwarzenegger really is pushing himself to do something different. And, like with Twins, I find it impossible not to root for him.

    Abigail Breslin plays Maggie, a teenage girl who has been bitten by a person infected with a deadly disease (from this point on, “person infected with a deadly disease” will be refereed to as “zombie,” even though that’s not a term from the film) and only has a few weeks before the disease also turns her into a zombie. Schwarzenegger plays her father, Wade, who pulls some strings to get her out of quarantine so that they can spend a few precious last weeks together.

    It’s almost a shame this movie is about zombies at all, because I fear there’s a zombie fatigue setting in that might automatically alienate people when they hear “Arnold Schwarzenegger zombie movie,” because even having seen Maggie, my first instinct is to think of something different after reading those four words together. And for people thinking that this is going to be a movie in which we watch Arnold Schwarzenegger kill hundreds of zombies, they will be disappointed to learn that there’s only one true, jump scare-type scene in which Schwarzenegger has to fight a zombie. He does kill others, but it’s not “cool.” It’s played as sad and depressing. This is a disease that is slowly taking loved ones away, while the infected are 100 percent conscious of what’s slowly happening to them. This is a grim movie.

    The thing is, without Schwarzenegger’s involvement, there’s not a lot here. It’s an okay enough story, but basically it’s just about a dying girl’s last few weeks alive, with the added twist that she’s going to be a zombie. There are some interesting themes here, in that we rarely learn much about zombies before they become zombies — the transformation is usually much quicker in other stories — but it’s basically a movie about saying goodbye. The only element that makes it truly interesting is Schwarzenegger’s presence.

    Just like how I felt the first time I saw Twins, I have never seen Schwarzenegger try to do something like this before. There’s little action, there’s little to no humor; what Schwarzenegger is trying to pull off is some sort of solemn gravitas. The thing is, he actually succeeds, but only because of everything we already know about Arnold Schwarzenegger before we see Maggie. And I suppose this played into why Twins was so effective; there’s an old switcheroo of expectations at work, which is appealing.

    I almost hate that Schwarzenegger will be in his fourth Terminator movie later this summer. It kind of undercuts this almost narrative that Schwarzenegger is somehow adapting his onscreen persona to something different as he approaches 70. Then again, maybe that’s not fair. No one is mad that Harrison Ford, an actor already in his 70s, is playing Han Solo again. Regardless, the fact that Schwarzenegger is in a movie like Maggie at all is an interesting look at perhaps his next chapter.


  4. Arnold Schwarzenegger Looks Back At The Roles That Redefined His Career:

    The action icon has broken into acting, then stardom, then comedy, then politics, and back again.


  5. Stallone and Schwarzenegger: how their action heroes differ:

    What sets Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone’s action heroes apart from one another?

    There are spoilers within for Predator, Terminator 2, Cobra, the Rambo and Rocky films, and Big Momma’s House 2 (just seeing if you’re paying attention there).

    Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger. At a certain point, you cannot think of one without the other. Action icons of the ’80s, they are as synonymous with 80spop culture as the side ponytail, hair metal and New Coke. For action fans they are yin and yang, the flip sides of the same sweaty bicep. While they bear some superficial similarities, their star personas are actually quite different.

    Stallone – The Underdog

    Though he boasts a bulky physique comparable to the former Mr. Universe, the essence of Stallone’s appeal is that he is inherently an underdog — this is why he is perfect for Rocky Balboa, and miscast in Cobra and Judge Dredd.

    Stallone, unlike Schwarzenegger, is not suited to playing pure archetypes. In his action movies, he has to overcome adversity to transform himself into a superman. Therein lies the key difference between their respective star personae. While Schwarzenegger is presented from the outset as a ready-made hero, Stallone begins as a man who has to turn himself into one — while this is partly a result of his success in Rocky, it is also indicative of their respective talents.

    Though his career choices include a extensive list of car wrecks (Rhinestone, Over The Top, Stop Or My Mom Will Shoot), Stallone is a talented actor, as his turns in Copland and Rocky Balboa have proved. As a trained actor, Stallone is capable of playing out the beats of a character arc; the inverse of Schwarzenegger.

    The Rambo franchise (1982-2008) is Sylvester Stallone’s most successful venture into the action genre, and a good deal of the series’ appeal is based on the character of John Rambo, and the struggles he faces conform to Stallone’s underdog persona.

    Though he possesses an extensive skill set for killing, with Stallone in the role Rambo comes across as a more worldly and damaged version of Rocky Balboa, rather than just another monosyllabic brute. This focus on Rambo’s bruised humanity is highlighted in the first film in the franchise, First Blood. Rambo is a drifter who is antagonized by a sadistic, small town sheriff. After being arrested on trumped up charges, Rambo is then subjected to various indignities by the sheriff’s deputies, experiences which trigger memories of his wartime imprisonment.

    Traumatized by this melding of old and new pain, Rambo’s old survival instincts kick in and he escapes to go on a rampage against his former captors.

    Throughout First Blood, Rambo is never presented as the one-man-army he would become in the sequels. He is presented as a victim of a society that has no place for him, and does not want to accept him. In this way, Rambo is even more of an underdog than Rocky, who manages to find acceptance and love from his family and community.

    This psychological dimension would be reduced in the sequels, but the character’s past trauma continues to inform the most visceral moments of the sequels, whether its the death of Rambo’s ally Co-Bao (Julie Nickson) in Part II or (more ludicrously) his attempt at a more spiritually fulfilling life as a Buddhist in Rambo III.

    This psychological dimension is also rooted in another convention of the Rambo series: the self-surgery sequence.

    Injury and torture are key motifs in Stallone’s action movies, and are synonymous with 80s action movies as a whole. If the hero is wounded or tortured, it is ritualized as a masochistic form of spectacle. This convention is a key motif in Stallone’s work, from the brutal training and matches in Rocky to his half-deaf cop in Copland.

    In each movie of the Rambo series, Rambo has to perform self-surgery on himself. Think back to the scenes in the Rambo movies in which Rambo has to perform self-surgery. This self-surgery motif reaches its cartoonish peak with Rambo III, in which Rambo uses gunpowder to cauterize a massive hole in his side). This convention serves a similar function to a training montage — if Rambo can get through the pain, he has crossed some insane psychic barrier to regain his mojo and beat the villains.

    Stallone is a great action star, but while he is often lumped in with Schwarzenegger as a muscleman, his appeal is closer to that of Bruce Willis (John McClane) and Mel Gibson (Martin Riggs). While he lacks their sense of humor and more, uh, relatable physiques, Stallone invests characters like Rambo and Rocky with a degree of vulnerability and humanity.

    This becomes a problem when Stallone is cast in the role of a pure action hero. The best example of this disconnect is Cobra (1986). An urban action film along the lines of the Dirty Harry series, Cobra is Stallone’s attempt at a pure action archetype. Beyond the movie’s obvious flaws (covered in a recent episode of the podcast How Did This Get Made?) Cobra does not work because it negates the very things that make Stallone watchable. His eyes, the key to measuring Rambo’s pain, are covered by glasses and he is fully clothed in leather. Part of the vulnerability of his most famous characters Rocky and Rambo is that their bodies are always partially exposed.

    In Nighthawks, another action movie set in an urban environment, Stallone’s wardrobe is not used to make him look tough. During two major action sequences in Nighthawks, Stallone is even dressed in drag. Whereas Nighthawks is about an ordinary cop who is out of his depth, Cobra is about a super cop who is (literally) ready for anything.

    From his clothes, to his car, to his ridiculous arsenal, Cobra is designed to be instantly iconic — which misses the point of Stallone’s appeal as an action hero. With Schwarzenegger, we can buy him instantly as a super cop, a super warrior, or a superhero. But not Stallone. With Stallone, it’s about the character’s journey to become a superhero. That’s his essence as an action hero, and the defining element which separates him from his Austrian rival.

    Schwarzenegger – The Superhero

    While Stallone, through his performance in Rocky, will always have an innate advantage over Schwarzenegger in terms of acting ability, it was Schwarzenegger, at least in their heyday, who showed a shrewder understanding of how to best utilize his limited abilities.

    The key to why Schwarzenegger was able to outpace Stallone in the ’80s and boast a stronger filmography was an understanding of what his appeal and limitations as a performer were. Stallone at his best is basically David fighting Goliath – an ordinary man with great tenacity and talents which allow him to persevere against enemies with greater physical advantages. Schwarzenegger is closer to Hercules, a hero of great, near-supernatural strength who is tasked with ridding the world of supernatural creatures who are even powerful than he is.

    Hence the focus on high concepts and genre films. Only in an outlandish situation would someone of Schwarzenegger’s speech and physique work as a protagonist.

    Part of the fun of watching Schwarzenegger is seeing how this superman deals with a particular herculean task. There is no real need for a deep character arc or introspection in these roles. This lack of depth is partly the reason why his characters do not lend themselves to sequels as Stallone’s do (The Terminator movies do not count since he technically plays a different character in each movie).

    Predator is an example of the Schwarzenegger persona at its zenith. He opens the film as the leader of a crack team of commandos and is shown as highly competent and concerned for the wellbeing of his men — he is clearly a hero. Once the Predator turns up, the movie begins stripping Schwarzenegger of his superhuman sheen. His team are wiped out, his weapons are useless and his body, lovingly photographed by McTiernan, is inadequate to the task of defeating his alien foe.

    In the film’s extended climax, Dutch has to prove his superiority by outsmarting his foe. It is only at the climax of a Schwarzenegger movie that he can appear to be more vulnerable. Even at the climax of Terminator 2, when his T-800 is outmatched by the T-1000, his weakness and ‘injuries’ make him seem more vulnerable and sympathetic. It is only when he is placed against an enemy who is bigger and stronger than he is that Schwarzenegger makes sense as a relatable hero for an audience to root for.

    The reason why Schwarzenegger faltered in the 90s was that he seemed to forget what made him a star in the first place, and tried to make films which required a broader acting range than he was capable of – hence the lame comedies (Junior) and action flicks (End Of Days) in which he plays average guys going through the kind of redemptive character arcs that he had previously avoided.

    Unlike Stallone, who has matched his physique to blue collar characters like Rocky, Schwarzenegger is not Joe Average — his one unalloyed success of the ’90s, True Lies, proves this by having him play an American James Bond in a milieu which bridged the gap between the comic book excess of his eighties hits and the CGI-augmented, MTV-influenced carnage of the new decade.

    The most emblematic example of where Schwarzenegger went wrong is End Of Days. On release, End Of Days was seen as a comeback for Schwarzenegger after the failure of Batman And Robin and the success of his heart surgery.

    For reasons that remain baffling, Schwarzenegger elected to turn his back on his strengths as a one liner-popping muscleman and play an everyman. Jericho Cane is an over-the-hill cop with a tragic past, who drinks to mask his pain. This is a role designed for an actor, not Schwarzenegger, and the already silly pre-millennial premise is undermined by his casting.

    Even if the role been designed along the lines of Predator’s Dutch — a gifted professional with no real inner turmoil — the movie still would not work because the premise is contingent on a flawed man being tempted by the Devil.

    While the movie did not perform to expectations, Schwarzenegger continued down the path of playing ordinary heroes with bodybuilder physiques and Austrian accents. None of these projects (The 6th Day and Collateral Damage) were particularly successful, and reinforced the essential problem underpinning Schwarzenegger’s decline. While as an audience we take Schwarzenegger’s foreignness for granted, it is always in the context of him playing a role that accounts for his accent and build — a secret agent, a cyborg, or a special forces soldier. When Schwarzenegger steps too far out of his established persona, his movies suffer.

    The Heroes Return

    Ultimately, Stallone’s franchises were the basis of his comeback, while Schwarzenegger’s initial efforts (The Last Stand and Stallone co-staring Escape Plan) have thus far failed to jump start his career. Part of that has to be quality — while they have their good points, none of Schwarzenegger’s new vehicles boasted the kind of popcorn high concept that would support his outsized presence.

    And so Schwarzenegger is taking a note from Stallone and going back to the well, with a sequel/reboot to The Terminator out this year and a potential sequel to Conan The Barbarian in the works. While age may have made Schwarzenegger’s image somewhat outmoded, I would not count him out yet. Elder action heroes have had second winds before, and with the resurgent popularity of the comic book, fantasy and science fiction genres, the potential for the kind of comic excess Schwarzenegger is remembered for remains a possibility.


  6. Arnold Schwarzenegger: Every Movie Ranked From Worst To Best:

    A look back at the career of one of Hollywood’s biggest icons.


  7. The hidden triumphs of late-period Arnold Schwarzenegger:

    Things are not going well for Arnold Schwarzenegger.

    In the few years since his adventure as governor of California ended, Schwarzenegger has tried, with not even limited or qualified success, to resume his career as the biggest action star of his generation. But let’s not delude ourselves: Schwarzenegger is not 1993 Michael Jordan, who left the basketball world on top for a whiff in minor-league baseball, then came back to his area of expertise to win three more straight NBA championships. Schwarzenegger’s career was already on the skids when he turned to public service, and his return to movies has merely continued his losing streak, exacerbated by his advancing age and the fact that today’s target demographic wasn’t even alive during his heyday in the late 1980s and early 1990s, much less eagerly awaiting his comeback. Add to that the stink-trail of his ignominious final couple of years in office, when he presided over woeful budget shortfalls and an embarrassing sex scandal, and his public image isn’t what it used to be, either. People aren’t invested in his success, if they’re interested in him at all.

    So here’s Schwarzenegger’s dilemma: How does a 67-year-old of diminished star power, waning (albeit still impressive) physical abilities, and limited range get back on top? The answer is, “He doesn’t,” but that’s a liberating conclusion, not a premature burial. Schwarzenegger has long since passed the torch to The Rock, Vin Diesel, and other less-weathered blocks of granite, and hasn’t really had a true hit since 1999’s End Of Days, a horror/thriller beloved by few and remembered by fewer. (The third Terminator, from 2003, was also a success, but with too long a list of qualifiers to count.) But there are advantages to being an icon of Schwarzenegger’s stature without being a star anymore, and the primary one is a freedom of movement that wasn’t possible when every single movie he did was a cultural event. Had the script for his muted new indie “zombie” movie Maggie crossed his agent’s desk in 1994, it would have gone to the incinerator before Schwarzenegger even laid eyes on it.

    In other words, there’s reason to be optimistic about the places Schwarzenegger’s career can go in his twilight years, and reason to be excited about what he’s done already, even though he’s been rewarded with middling-to-poor reviews and worse box office. He hasn’t lost his essential Arnold-ness—that easy, dopey, disarming charisma that’s always been hidden beneath his Mr. Universe bulk—and he’s gained the flexibility to play antiheroes and character roles, to function as part of a larger ensemble, to try his hand at straight drama, and to bounce back and forth between Hollywood projects and independent films. Perhaps his losing streak will continue unabated, but excepting one serious miscalculation, Schwarzenegger has played his hand smartly since his return to movies, and just hasn’t been fortunate enough to be rewarded for it.

    Let’s get the mistake out of the way first: Schwarzenegger should have never hitched his wagon to Sylvester Stallone. The three Expendables movies and Escape Plan must have seemed like tempting ways to resolve the Schwarzenegger/Stallone action rivalry of the 1980s and early 1990s, and combine their dimming star wattage into one big, shining light. But Schwarzenegger already won that war handily two decades ago, and he hasn’t been well-served by including himself in a Stallone-led nostalgia tour of washed-up ’80s action heroes, second-tier modern stars, and the stunt castings of assorted MMA fighters and Kelsey “Pockets” Grammer. Schwarzenegger doesn’t need to act like a member of Crosby, Stills, and Nash, still pumping out the old hits without needing to bother creating any new ones. If anything, the 2013 Stallone/Schwarzenegger team-up Escape Plan was an even lousier idea than the Expendables trilogy, because it attempted to place these stars in the context of a tech-driven, 21st-century action thriller, but didn’t have the production values to do it properly. It was the kind of movie that dangerously presages the glue factory of straight-to-video thrillers, where the likes of Dolph Lundgren, Steven Seagal, and Jean-Claude Van Damme have been laid to rest.

    But there’s a difference between an ’80s nostalgia tour and the genuine revival signaled by The Last Stand, Schwarzenegger’s first big starring vehicle after the governorship, and a woefully underrated one at that. Rather than riding along with a fossil like Stallone, Schwarzenegger teamed up with Kim Jee-woon, the talented, bold Korean genre stylist behind A Tale Of Two Sisters; The Good, The Bad, The Weird; and I Saw The Devil. Kim updates a Western premise for The Last Stand, which basically amounts to a lawman (Schwarzenegger) squaring off in a bloody showdown in a one-horse town, but not all the way to the present. Instead, the film consciously goes against the trends of the day by reviving the physical stunts and hard-R bloodletting of Schwarzenegger’s earliest work. Though the semi-major studio Lionsgate released it to the graveyard of mid-January, which is practically begging for the derision the film got in many corners, Last Stand shows how comfortable Schwarzenegger can be returning to the mid-1980s destruction of Commando and Raw Deal without having to resort to glib self-reference. If he must return to his roots, this was the way to do it.

    One year later, Schwarzenegger’s turn in David Ayer’s Sabotage, another critical and commercial failure, again showed promising signs that he’s willing to relinquish some control over his image. As the leader of a corrupt DEA special-operations unit, Schwarzenegger is first shown spearheading a mission to take down a drug fortress while shielding the feds from the $10 million he and his team are skimming from the money pile. They don’t entirely get away with it, and they have to deal with a saboteur in their ranks. Typical of Ayer—who’s turned “edginess” into a personal brand with films like Training Day, Harsh Times, Street Kings, and Fury—Sabotage goes way too heavy on the machismo, even for Schwarzenegger, who looks distinctly uncomfortable letting the “fuck”s fly. But Schwarzenegger’s character is also straitlaced relative to his team, which lands him in the moral hinterlands between a proper lawman and an out-and-out rogue. That’s foreign territory for him as an action star, and further evidence that he’s open to new possibilities.

    His new film, Maggie, goes all the way. If Schwarzenegger had tried to slip this solemn, nearly action-free twist on the zombie movie into theaters at the height of his popularity, theatergoers would have torn the stuffing out of their seats. But save for a scene where he beats back a zombie in the bathroom of an abandoned gas station, Schwarzenegger spends most of the film watching over a teenage daughter (Abigail Breslin) who’s been infected by a virus that’s devastated the globe, but hasn’t turned into an undead, flesh-craving beast just yet. There’s a process for “quarantining” (i.e. killing) the infected before they get to that point, but it’s up to Schwarzenegger’s father to determine when it’s time—which turns Maggie into a touching allegory for terminal illness and losing a child. Maggie is such a good idea for a zombie picture that it’s a shame first-time director Henry Hobson makes it suffocate under its own dark cloud. But the determined grimness brings out notes of tenderness and anguish in Schwarzenegger that he’s never allowed himself to express onscreen. He still has tremendous presence—a man of his size and stature will always have it—but his performance stays in line with the low-key smallness of Hobson’s film, which is not his modus operandi.

    It occurred to me while watching Maggie that our retirement-age Schwarzenegger may want Clint Eastwood’s acting career. Eastwood is another star who made his bones snarling through hard-hitting genre pictures, ventured into California politics as a conservative voice in the liberal wilderness, and needed to figure out how to remain viable as he got older and the movies changed. Schwarzenegger hasn’t shown any interest in going behind the camera, but like Eastwood in Unforgiven and later films like Million Dollar Baby and Gran Torino, his face has taken on a weathered character, and he knows his range enough not to push beyond it. One of the effects of being a star as long as Schwarzenegger and Eastwood have is that later roles can pay off on earlier ones, like spending from a reserve of interest that’s accumulated in their cultural accounts. Schwarzenegger is now at a point where he can put his legacy to work for him, and get audiences thinking about how the roles he takes today relate to the ones that made him a star yesterday. Now if he can only figure out how to make money doing it, he stands to burnish his legend, too.


  8. 10 Actors Who Are About To Make A Huge Comeback:

    Arnold Schwarzenegger – Terminator: Genysis

    Arnie has been trying to make a comeback for a few years now, given the end of his political career, but his efforts haven’t gotten him very far: The Last Stand should have been a modern action classic, but was actually rather forgettable, Escape Plan was wholly disappointing schlock, whilst Sabotage was pretty much a misfire of the highest order.

    So it’s Terminator: Genysis that will mark Schwarzenegger’s true return to the motion picture business; one that will see the actor reprising what is perhaps his most famous role as the time traveling T-800 of the movie’s title.

    Schwarzenegger’s future as a Hollywood star of the aged kind presumably lies with the success of this movie reboot. Still, for a 67-year-old, you couldn’t argue for a better comeback vehicle than that of a $170 million blockbuster. It rarely happens.


  9. Nostalgia Critic Real Thoughts On: Jingle All the Way

    Put dat cookie down NAH-OW!


  10. WatchMojo’s Top 10 Arnold Schwarzenegger Movie Quotes


  11. Visualizing Terminator Genisys’ Poor Performance:

    Those parentheses are very important. It is entirely possible that Terminator Genisys will end up freefalling in America only to more-than-make up the slack overseas. After all, Pacific Rim barely crossed $100 million domestic but ended up with a $411m cume on a $191m budget and ended up with a sequel and an animated series. Even the prior Paramount/Viacom VIAB +0.00% Inc. would-be franchise starter G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra earned $300m worldwide off a $175m budget and ended up with a cheaper, 3D-converted, and more overseas-friendly sequel. If anything, there will be an inevitable temptation to greenlight a sequel to Terminator Genisys if the numbers even remotely come close to justifying it if only to deflect the notion that it was a failure. But regardless of how it does overseas (and that’s an important discussion for a later day), the fact remains that it pretty much tanked in America. The $155m Skydance Productions film opened with $27.5m over the Fri-Sun weekend and $44.1m over the Wed-Sun weekend, basically making about in five days what Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and Terminator Salvation made in their Fri-Sun portions of their five-day weekends. So without further ado, and with the disclaimer that this is exclusively about the film’s domestic performance, let’s dive in!

    The marketing was terrible.

    Paramount has a really strong history of successfully opening tent poles over the last decade, but (with the obvious caveat that the film wasn’t very good) this was one of the worst and/or least successful attempts to market a tent pole picture in America that I can remember. The PR campaign started with laughably-terrible Entertainment Weekly cast photos, which had everyone but Arnold Schwarzenegger posing in generic backgrounds and looking as comically angry as possible. The first trailer was fine, establishing the “it’s the same, but different” premise, reassuring fans that Schwarzenegger would be a key character this time around, and offering a few money shots. But the second trailer blatantly gave away the film’s core plot twist.

    It spoiled a major (and fan unfriendly) reveal to no real benefit of the trailer itself and for the sole purpose of getting the online movie community talking about it even if it was in the negative. Getting James Cameron to plug the film at the last minute was a smart touch, but allowing director Alan Taylor to talk too much about how displeased he was with Thor: The Dark World took the focus off of the film he was promoting. And finally the reveal of a cell phone game that could be played in the theater for select IMAX showings (which was initially and erroneously reported as a game to be played during the movie) solidified the bad taste that the film was building in the online community with little interest increased among general moviegoers. Of course, a bad marketing campaign can be salvaged if the movie is good and/or the public is excited anyway. But…

    The reviews were terrible.

    Thanks to an early overseas opening, the embargo for Terminator: Genisys was up a week prior to the film’s domestic debut, so the proverbial cat was out of the bag. In short, the film earned a 27% positive score on Rotten Tomatoes and more importantly an average rating of 4.7/10 on the site. While my review was among the more negative, there wasn’t exactly a small contingent of super-satisfied critics that fought the alleged good fight ala Speed Racer or The Lone Ranger. At best, some critics were okay with the film. But word got out that the picture was a narrative mess, was a general bore, did little with its time-hopping scenario, and was a mere arbitrary franchise reboot with no major story twists beyond the big one that the trailers revealed.

    Again, bad reviews won’t doom a movie that is already anticipated, but Terminator Genisys was never a hotly anticipated summer property. It was based on the notion that there was a large community of fans who would race out to the theater to see a new Terminator movie and/or would race out to the theater to see a new Arnold Schwarzenegger movie. Neither of these things was in evidence, and thus the movie itself had to deliver beyond rehashed variations on what we’ve seen before. It didn’t, and even if the reviews didn’t kill the film outright; they were a nail in the coffin of domestic moviegoer disinterest.

    It wasn’t the main event.

    This is where I feel a touch of sympathy for those involved. Imagine if you will a slightly different timeline, one where Jurassic World and Inside Out play primarily how conventional wisdom suggested they would play. In Earth 2, Jurassic World opened to $115 million four weekends ago, earning so-so reviews and satisfied-but-not superlative word-of-mouth. It made $55m on its second weekend, $30m on its third weekend, and just $20m over the Fri-Sun portion of the holiday weekend. Meanwhile, Walt Disney's DIS +0.86% Inside Out played like a typical Pixar summer original. It opened to $65m on its debut weekend while earning $35m in weekend two, and now only $20m over the Fri-Sun portion of its holiday weekend.

    Under this alternate timeline, Terminator Genisys arrives on the scene with audiences more primed with a new blockbuster release. But Skynet was up to no good, and thus in our timeline Jurassic World and Inside Out performed far better than anyone would have expected a year ago when these dates were set. Terminator Genisys is not the first would-be big movie to run headfirst into a phenomenon, but it had the extra misfortune to crash into two family-friendly phenomena. Both films amounted to perfect “consensus choice” movie picks for large groups of multi-aged family members making the choice to head out to the theaters over the long weekend. If you’ve got mom, dad, your eight-year-old son and fifteen-year-old daughter, plus a few cousins, aunts, and uncles and grandparents in tow, are you more likely to see Terminator Genisys or Jurassic World? Speaking of which…

    That PG-13 didn’t help.

    For the record, Terminator Genisys thoroughly deserved its PG-13 rating. It has very little on-screen killing, no gore, not much profanity, and no sexual content whatsoever. But once again a major studio has taken an R-rated franchise and watered it down to a PG-13 for the sake of younger audiences who already have plenty of kid-friendly options available to them. Moreover, while Jurassic World and something like Marvel’s Ant-Man are PG-13 films that are/will be considered kid-safe, the Terminator franchise has a strong reputation as a grim, violent, and adult-skewing franchise. All the PG-13 did was annoy the very hardcore fans who wanted to get excited about the film in the first place. The whole “turn an R-rated franchise into a PG-13 franchise” has worked exactly once, with Live Free or Die Hard. And even they eventually went back to the R-rated sandbox.

    The film played 65% over 25 years old, which means again that there were very few would-be young Terminator fans who were thrilled at an age-appropriate Terminator movie. I may go into this later this month, but Hollywood really needs to stop making PG-13 the default rating. A genuinely R-rated Terminator Genisys would have at least helped the film stand out amid the current and future flood of PG-13 action-ers. As it is, the film had a PG-13 rating and yet still came off as kid-unfriendly, while the older moviegoers who might have been interested were turned off by the rating and otherwise not convinced to actually splurge for a babysitter in order to indulge their nostalgia. When playing around with cultural nostalgia, make sure the property is the kind that older moviegoers can drag their kids to. Otherwise, the former fans will just wait until VOD/DVD.

    Arnold Schwarzenegger is not a box office draw anymore.

    I really liked The Last Stand, I enjoyed Maggie, and I appreciated his work in the deeply flawed Sabotage, but Arnold Schwarzenegger is not a major box office draw in America anymore. And frankly he hasn’t been in nearly twenty years since Eraser way back in 1996. His post-Batman & Robin vehicles (End of Days, The Sixth Day, and Collateral Damage) underwhelmed to varying degrees, while only Terminator 3 was a big hit since the franchise was still popular with moviegoers (star+concept). His post-gubernatorial output may be artistically interesting (Matt Singer’s “Arnold Schwarzenegger is an auteur” is a must-read), but only Escape Plan (with Sylvester Stallone) and his glorified cameos in the Expendables films topped $25m in America.

    Now much of Schwarzenegger’s recent output has implicitly dealt with his cultural irrelevance, but, unfortunately, the box office performances of said pictures have turned subtext into text. He will still get work, because he remains an exciting performer and because I can’t imagine any filmmaker of a certain age turning down an opportunity to work with him, but his days as a top-level box office draw arguably started with the first Bush administration and ended during the first term of the Clinton administration. I’m excited about the artistic possibilities of a Schwarzenegger unburdened by box office dominance, but he shouldn’t be considered to be a major domestic box office draw anymore. No one stays on top forever, and we shouldn’t expect our former top-tier movie stars to maintain his or her popularity just because Hollywood has been so terrible at crafting new movie stars over the last fifteen years.

    America didn’t want or care about another Terminator movie.

    If I have been a bit hard on both the artistic failures and domestic box office failures of Terminator Genisys, it is because the film represents one of the ugliest trends in modern Hollywood today. To wit, just because a movie or a franchise was momentarily popular back in the 1980′s or the 1990′s doesn’t mean that moviegoers young and old want to see another variation in a theater. They also indirectly bashed Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and then delivered a painfully inferior product, but I digress. The difference between Terminator Genisys and Jurassic World is pretty straightforward: Jurassic World offered a film that was plenty exciting even if you had zero strong feelings about the Jurassic Park franchise or were too young for nostalgia. It also had a killer hook (The park is open!) and a present-tense movie star (Chris Pratt) to entice those on the fence, and the film just plain looked good and looked like spectacular big-screen entertainment.

    Terminator Genisys offered basically a tweaked variation of what you’ve already seen before, with the same would-be movie star who was a big deal in the 1990′s and the anti-Chris Pratt in Jai Courtney. It looked at best to be a passable Saturday matinee option, but the reviews squandered even that potential. The key appeal of Terminator Genisys was merely that it was another Terminator movie, with little to offer moviegoers who had no emotional attachment to such a thing. And the film’s big reveal was ironically something that was supposed to happen in Terminator Salvation but was altered after the script leaked and fans cried foul, which means that the very hardcore fans were already on the attack even before reviews confirmed the worst. Here’s a free (if simplistic) tip going forward: Before you embark on your franchise reboot, make sure that the pieces are in place to at least theoretically make a film that will appear exciting and fun even to audiences who have no interest in the franchise in question.


    Now if Terminator Genisys ends up playing more like Tammy (2.5x multiplier, $110m domestic) than The Last Airbender (2.1x multiplier, $95m domestic) and/or goes nuts overseas (it has earned $85m thus far with China, Japan, Germany, Spain, and Italy still to go) then a reevaluation may be in order. But for the record I don’t think Paramount greenlit a $155m Terminator movie to earn $110m domestic, so I don’t feel too bad calling the film a miss domestically. And if it ends up doing well outside of America, perhaps becoming the first film to end up under $100m domestic but still top $400m worldwide, then that will be an entirely different and wholly necessary conversation. But that conversation will have to wait. And just because the film earns just enough to justify a sequel doesn’t mean that said sequel will earn as much as the first film did. Unless you want to call Dwayne Johnson and get him to come aboard.


    • Is Terminator Genisys the worst blockbuster ever?

      July 6, 2015 by Anghus Houvouras 89 Comments

      Anghus Houvouras on whether Terminator Genisys is the worst blockbuster of all time…

      An insulting, paradox riddled mess. A senseless, poorly written, incompetently directed embarrassment. A master class in how to mismanage a franchise reboot. Terminator Genisys arrived in theaters this week with little fanfare other than a ringing endorsement from James Cameron. Something that probably would have meant more before having seen Avatar. It’s terrible, which is something a lot of people predicted based on a heinous marketing campaign that revealed every lazy twist. If you can’t make a movie look exciting or at least interesting based on a two-minute trailer, the prospects for the finished film are going to be bleak.

      ‘Bleak’ is a great way to describe Genisys, which is so bad that it deserves a hyperbolic post-mortem. This wretched, stillborn blockbuster needs an autopsy.

      Nonsense personified

      I’m not sure if this is specific enough. There’s so much nonsense in Genisys that halfway through the movie it became painstakingly difficult to keep up with the sheer amount of bullshit being heaped at us. We start with the opening that shows John Connor (Jason Clarke) on the precipice of victory over the machines. Thanks to the previous movies, he already knows how this scenario plays out. The machines will fall. In a last-ditch effort to survive they will send back a Terminator to kill his mother, Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke). Kyle Reese (Jai Courtney) will be sent back to save her thus launching a series of events that will lead to the birth of John Connor who will one day take down the machines.

      Within the first ten minutes they wipe that slate clean. Turns out John is sucker punched by another machine at the very moment Kyle Reese gets sent back. This is where things start to get weird. Instead of just killing John Connor right there, they transform him into a human/machine hybrid and then send him back in time to help create SkyNet (hiding in a killer app called Genisys).

      Reese shows up in 1984 to discover that a liquid metal T-1000 is waiting for him immediately erasing the storyline of the original Terminator. You see, it turns out the machines just keep sending robots back into the past. They sent one back to kill young Sarah Connor when she was 9, but it’s all right: another Arnold model T-800 was sent back to save her. Now they’re buddies. She calls him ‘Pops’. So this Terminator apparently knows everything that’s going to happen in the future. So instead of Kyle Reese saving Sarah, falling in love, and planting the seed that will one day be the leader of resistance, they don’t.

      This would be the first ‘What the F*ck’ moment of the movie.

      The second is when you learn that the next part of the plot involves Sarah and Kyle using a time machine to propel them from 1984 to 2017, because that is when SkyNet goes live and Judgement Day occurs. The time machine is a ramshackle, homemade version of the same device that sent Kyle and the Terminator back in the first place and is apparently easy enough to be assembled with parts picked up from a 1980’s Radio Shack.

      I couldn’t quite figure out why they needed to go forward to 2017. Instead of a 30+ year head start to put together a plan to stop SkyNet, they decide to thrust themselves into an uncertain future and give themselves 72 hours to save the world. I’m not sure which was more stupid: the plan or the hackneyed writers who thought this was a good idea.

      I knew John Connor, and you sir are no John Connor

      Probably the biggest sin of this movie is what they did to John Connor. For decades it’s always been established that John Connor would one day lead the resistance to win the war against the machines, though we’ve yet to really see that happen. We’re always dealing with the tension that John’s great victory over the machines might not happen because a robot is going to kill his mother, or his father, or sneak in and slip a condom on Kyle Reese right before penetration.

      Genisys finally gives us a John Connor who leads humanity to victory, only to see him turned into a human/machine hybrid hellbent on destroying the world. When I saw the trailers and first learned of this twist, I thought it had potential. We’re always told that John ends the war with the machines, but we never knew how. Wouldn’t it be crazy if John Connor ends the war by entering into a pact with the machines. Something akin to the scenario in The Matrix. John ends up winning the war by ceasing hostilities, but he ends up being more Neville Chamberlain than Winston Churchill.

      Sorry to say, the creative team behind Genisys doesn’t go there. Instead, John Connor dies a tragic death and a tepid plot device that turns him into a soulless villain. The entire idea of John Connor being some kind of great leader is eradicated. Genisys turns John Connor into a plot device and ruins the concept of his character for no other reason than needing some kind of M Night Shyamalan inspired twist.

      The Emotional Complexity of a Robot.

      There are so many confusing things about Genisys, but the most baffling is the poorly engineered characters. Sarah meets Kyle and they fall in love over 48 hours. Kyle Reese is John’s Father and best friend, and yet after they all kill him there’s barely a moment to mourn his passing. I realize in this new Genisys timeline Sarah and Kyle haven’t even had time to get sweaty and produce humanity’s only hope against the machine. However, I would think that learning your best friend is actually your son, then being forced to see him killed to save the world would carry more emotional weight than the ambivalence we’re shown.

      Maybe it’s the terrible casting. Jai Courtney is a one-dimensional hunk of meat. A poor man’s Channing Tatum. Clarke is a pint-sized dynamo, but she never really becomes Sarah Connor. She’s more like the spunky female lead in a community theater production of TERMINATOR! THE MUSICAL. Our protagonists are given so little to do. Other than looking shocked and firing weapons, they have so little to do.

      The fault lies mainly with a script that is so bereft of characters, conflict, and common sense that our actors spend many scenes slack-jawed at the events unfolding around them. At no point in Genisys do you get anything from the characters other than confusion or anger.

      Arnold’s sad last attempt at remaining relevant

      Watching Genisys is a sad experience. One that makes you pine for the good old days when Arnold had presence and charisma. Before being the Governor of California made him dead in the eyes. He’s so bad in Genisys. They try to make him likable and give him a few moments of levity, but they all land with the cast iron thud of a T-800 Exoskeleton.

      I give James Cameron a hard time, but Genisys shows how important a director with clout and vision is to a project. One who can restrain their iconic action star and help him deliver a solid performance. Arnold was never a great actor, but he used to be a great presence. Cameron knows exactly how to use Arnold. Watch T2 or True Lies and you’ll see Arnold firing on all cylinders. Alan Taylor lacks the gravitas to keep someone like Arnold in check. What you end up with is an awkward performance that rivals his turn as Mr. Freeze in Batman & Robin.

      Like Stallone, Arnold has stumbled into his 60’s still trying to be the action icon that made him into a household name 30+ years ago. Arnold, we’ll always love you. However, most of us have little interest in seeing you try to rekindle the magic that you haven’t been able to generate since the end of the 20th Century.

      How much did they pay for James Cameron’s seal of approval?

      The most confusing thing about Genisys is the ringing endorsement from James Cameron. I hope the check was big. Big enough to fund another one of those undersea expeditions he’s always embarking upon.

      How could this much go wrong?

      What’s most disappointing about Genisys is how bad it is given the source material. As Rise of the Machines and Salvation proved, you can still deliver something marginally entertaining even if your end product is underwhelming. Genisys delivers nothing. It’s so fundamentally terrible on every level. Alan Taylor makes Michael Bay look like Christopher Nolan.

      Terminator Genisys’ most mind-boggling trick is how a movie that cost 200 million dollars could look this bad. Nothing feels real. The whole movie looks like it was shot on a sound stage. There’s a helicopter chase sequence that feels like a cut scene from a PlayStation 2 game. There’s no excuse for a major summer blockbuster to look this cheap. I’ve seen more inspired cinematography in home-made pornography.

      When a movie is this terrible, you start to wonder how a system of checks and balances didn’t somehow prevent this from happening. Surely someone, somewhere had to see that the pieces weren’t fitting together. That the cast was awkward. The direction uninspired. The writing practically non-existent. I know a lot of blockbusters start production without a finished script, but I could easily be made to believe there was no script for Genisys and they made it up as they went along. Alan Taylor just shows up on set and says “Why don’t you guys do a scene where the Terminator makes a stupid face… and Kyle Reese will be like ‘Huh? What’s he doing?’ ROLL CAMERAS”

      Terminator Genisys is the worst blockbuster ever made. A joyless waste of a movie that will hopefully fail badly enough to let studios know this kind of franchise malfeasance will not be tolerated by the ticket buying public.


    • I would love to see Arnold VS. the Rock in T6 (if it ever happens)


  12. Since Terminator Genysis has released (along with the non-starter film Maggie earlier this year) the time may be approaching for an update to the Arnold article. Since Arnold’s return to film he has made a number of films; the high-profile Expendables films did respectable business with the first film earning just over $100M and part 2 earning about $80M. Good, respectable showings that helped give his comeback a good initial boost. But then again, the third Expendables flopped only earning about $40M (I really think the PG-13 rating hurt its chances among action fans moreso than the leak did). The Last Stand, his first real return movie as a lead, flopped domesetically. So did Escape Plan (although at least it did much better overseas). Then Sabatoge flopped. Recently, the dramatic zombie-flick Maggie flopped, only earning a paltry almost-nonexistent $150,000 domestically in a small number of theatres this past May. His comeback so far started off somewhat promising but has turned out to be underwhelming. It’s been pretty clear since he began his comeback that if he were to have one more runaway hit left in him, it would probably be his signature role, The Terminator.

    Terminator Genesys opened with a $27M opening over the July 4th weekend – an underwhelming beginning, and it appears the film will cross the $100M barrier domestically, but just barely. Worldwide box office will have to determine if it makes it to profit. But it’s not going to be a blockbuster for him, sadly. There’s talk of sequels, but since the film is not making much of an impression will the studio even want to roll the dice again? That also puts another Conan film, which Arnold says he plans to do next, in doubt as well, doesn’t it? And a sequel to Twins – which Arnold insists is still in the pipeline – seems to have “automatic flop” written all over it. I think this is the last time we will ever see a Schwarzenegger film break the $100M domestic barrier, even if more Terminator or Conan films come to pass.

    What are your thoughts, Lebeau? These recent developments with his biggest franchise role deserve an update in his article, but I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts in the comments section too.


    • Two things.

      1. Maggie was also released On Demand. I don’t think the grosses include the money made from VOD. I have no idea whether or not that makes Maggie profitable, but I know Snowpiercer followed a similar strategy last summer and was very successful. So Maggie may not be the flop that its box office grosses suggest. It certainly didn’t perform well at the box office though.
      2. T:G is also underperforming domestically. But, it’s making up for that overseas. It’s doing twice as much worldwide as it is in the US. It may even be enough to get another Terminator movie made.

      After the disappointing domestic performance of the latest Terminator, there’s no doubt that Arnold’s days as an A-list movie star in the US are done. But I’m still not counting him out. He’s still a draw elsewhere and that may be enough. With Maggie, he showed he can act. So I wouldn’t be surprised to see him take on more supporting and dramatic roles as time goes on.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I haven’t done a complete rewrite like some of the older articles, but this entry has been brought up to date to include Maggie and T5.


      • “I’ll Be Back”? The ‘Terminator’ Dilemma: When to Admit a Franchise Is Dead:

        Soft returns for the movie and release dates set for two sequels confound Paramount and Skydance as “bubble” movies — not flops, not quite megahits — require tough decisions: “Sometimes you are left scratching your head.”

        But now Genisys, which cost $155 million to produce and tens of millions more to mar­ket, is underperforming at the box office — it had earned only $80.6 million domestically and nearly $200 million overseas as of July 19 — underscoring the tough decisions franchise-mad studios face with what might be called “bubble” movies, decent performers whose returns don’t trigger an automatic sequel but whose backers aren’t quite ready to give up. Terminator could join Pacific Rim, Godzilla, Snow White and the Huntsman and Jack Reacher as recent bubble movies that scored sequels. On the other hand, franchise plays Prometheus, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader did fine but have not scored a follow-up green light.

        “Sometimes you are left scratching your head,” says Rentrak box-office analyst Paul Dergarabedian. “If a movie doesn’t kill at the box office, why move ahead? Studios will build franchises sometimes without the blessing of the audience.”

        Terminator: Genisys presents a tricky conundrum. Ellison has been especially enthusiastic about Terminator (Skydance paid $20 million for rights) and made the trilogy a priority. But opening over the July 4 holiday, the fifth film in the franchise failed to lure its target demo of younger males. Worse, critics attacked director Alan Taylor’s convoluted storyline and the upending of previous Terminator mythology. “There is no question that the market was affected by reviews, which nicked early word of mouth,” Paramount vice chair Rob Moore said after its opening weekend. The film has yet to open in China, where it launches Aug. 23, but without a muscular performance there, Genisys might top out at $375 million to $400 million worldwide — not an outright flop but not enough to quell nerves at Paramount.

        The studio and Skydance declined to comment on the status of the Terminator sequels or a television spinoff that was announced. But one Paramount source admits the planned follow-ups aren’t a given: “We will definitely need to see the holds globally to confirm that people like the film.” Complicating matters, Skydance didn’t cast any well-known movie stars in Genisys other than Arnold Schwarzenegger, 67, so the sequel probably would need to add a proven draw or rely again on Emilia Clarke, Jason Clarke and Jai Courtney.

        “If they are going to make another one, something has to change,” says MKM Partners analyst Eric Handler. “You either have to make a better film or make it cheaper. They tried to bring in elements of the first film, but it didn’t work. It’s going to be very difficult. They are going to have to cater to the international market.”

        Those foreign grosses, which now account for two-thirds of studio tentpole returns, increasingly are cited as key in determining whether a bubble movie is sequel-worthy. For instance, 2013’s Pacific Rim, made for $190 million, was considered a disappointment in the U.S. with $101 million but grossed three times as much overseas and is getting a sequel. Still, reliance on international performance is somewhat problematic because studios see a smaller cut of the box office than they do from U.S. theaters. Perhaps for that reason, insiders say that Legendary Entertainment, which is fully financing Pacific Rim 2, will spend less on the sequel, due Aug. 14, 2017, via Universal.

        The danger, of course, is that a studio abandons a franchise too soon, leaving millions on the table. Universal’s Fast & Furious movies faced extinction after the fourth installment failed to grow, but the decision to make a fifth film led to a revitalized property and, eventually, this summer’s $1.5 billion-grossing Furious 7 (at least two more Fast movies are planned).

        Ellison and Skydance have their own experience with a rebooted franchise in Tom Cruise’s Mission: Impossible, whose fourth film, 2011’s Ghost Protocol, re-energized the series with $694 million globally. They will test the strength of the Mission franchise when Rogue Nation hits theaters July 31. Fox faces a similar test with its Aug. 7 reboot of Fantastic Four, whose sequel already has been dated for 2017.

        “Any movie that can be sequelized is money in the bank,” notes Dergarabedian. The tough part, of course, is knowing when to hit the terminate button.


        • 10 Upcoming Movies That Have Already Ignored Massive Mistakes

          Casting Actors Who Are Past It – Terminator 6

          The Lesson: A View to a Kill

          The rights to Terminator revert back to James Cameron in 2019, which might be the best thing to happen to the franchise since the early ’90s. Or at least it would be if he hadn’t confirmed plans to recast Arnold Schwarzenegger in the next instalment.

          As iconic as Arnie was as the T-800 in the original films, he isn’t just long in the tooth these days, he’s got fangs like Baraka from Mortal Kombat.

          How can somebody play a believable killing machine post 70? Even if Schwarzenegger is a human template for the Terminators in T6, as is rumoured, it still begs the question of why they’re based on a man in his twilight years.

          Casting an actor way past his prime for sentimental reasons rarely does a franchise any favours. Take A View to a Kill, one of the more divisive Bond films, for example.

          Roger Moore had aged visibly in the two years since his previous 007 outing in Octopussy, and was actually older than his female co-star’s mother.

          Nobody bought him in the action sequences and even fewer could stomach him in the romantic scenes.

          Moore himself has even admitted “I was only about four hundred years too old for the part”, which is usually what a studio gets when they cast with their heart rather than their head.


  13. You be you, and I’ll be Bach! Wait, I’m not Bach at all (too far behind); maybe I’m the piano man.


  14. Now, this here is true spam.


    • You wouldn’t believe the amount of spam comments that the built-in filter catches. There are hundreds of them every day. And for every 100 the filter catches, one of them still gets through. Daffy and I try to clean them up as soon as we spot them.

      The opposite side is that sometimes the filter will identify a real comment as spam. If you have 2 or more links in your comment, it will almost certainly flag your comment for approval. It’s crazy. But let me tell you, the comments section would be a mess if not for the filter and manual scrubbing from Daffy and me.


      • Yeah, I guess a few comments sneaking through can’t be helped. At the same time, just like in many instances in life, someone completely innocent gets flagged/screened. There isn’t a website I’ve seen that doesn’t have some sort of spam (For example, ESPN always has those “Work at home, I make 6000$/week” in their comments section).


  15. As a Terminator die hard (as well as general mark for Schwarzenegger) I don’t quite see why critics were so hard on Terminator Genisys. The movie isn’t perfect, but considering the total disappointment of Salvation (which doesn’t really feely like a Terminator movie until the last 30 minutes or so) it was far from the worst of the series. You can argue that Rise of the Machines was a better movie, but Genisys was definitely a bit more fun. the two main things that hinder the movie is 1) the big twist gets spoiled in the trailer, it’s like if the sixth sense had told you Bruce Willis was a ghost in the first TV spot. It really takes away the shock that the movie was to hinge on. 2) the thing that work in the film don’t get quite enough screen time.
    The T-1000 was done very well, and 20 + years after its debut it can still be a intriguing villain, and what can be said about Schwarzenegger’s performance? The man really seems to be tailor made for the character, he know how far he can go with the comedy, and then bring it right back to the serious tone the film needs for the action sequences.

    Also who doesn’t love J.K. Simmons when he’s doing his thing.

    Yes the performances of Jai Courtney, and Jason Clarke range have moments that range from stiff to passable, but why is there a problem with Emilia Clarke? I found her believable as a 19-20ish Sarah Connor.

    Here’s hoping that the foreign markets make it possible for at least one more go with Arnold’s t-800


    • I agree with some points, disagree with others. I’ll run through them all point by point:

      • I agree with your overall ranking. Although for me, there are the first two movies which are good and all the others which just aren’t worth watching. Being the most fun of the bad movies isn’t all that impressive in my book. I give them all “thumbs down”. T3 is probably still the best non-Cameron Terminator movie. And the TV show is arguably better than any of them.

      • Man spoiling the big twist is just mind boggling, isn’t it. Once that is “revealed” in the movie, there’s just not much left. If it had been a surprise, it might have carried the movie through to the conclusion. But the trailer just sucks the wind out of the sails of T:G’s third act.

      • I would have preferred no T-1000. Felt shoe-horned in. Then it was easily dispatched to make room for the movie’s real villain. Maybe would have been better if the trailer had made us think the T-1000 was the main villain. But without that, it just felt like T:G aping the first two movies – which is something it did WAAAY too much. Which is my biggest gripe with the movie and why I think critics are being so hard on it. Almost every scene is an inferior copy of a scene from T1 or T2. It felt less like a movie than a coverband cycling through a greatest hits collection.

      • Scharzenegger was great. In Maggie, he showed he had some dramatic range. And in T:G, he showed just how good he is at comedy. I would have liked to have seen him be even goofier.

      • J.K. Simmons was fun, but I have no idea what that character was doing in the movie. He didn’t bring anything to the table other than being J.K. Simmons. I get that he was kind of a reverse clone of the skeptical psychologist from the first tow movies. But I could have done without him.

      • The problem with the Clarke version of Sarah Connor has more to do with the script than the actress. As written, she is insufferable. A better actress maybe could have redeemed her. But Clarke couldn’t do anything but scowl.

      • I would bet on at least one more go round for Arnold as the Terminator. Probably with a greatly reduced budget, which might not be a bad thing. Hopefully with a tighter and more inventive script.


    • I’m a Terminator die hard too, and I genuinely liked the movie when I walked out of the theater. But the more I thought about it (on my own and in internet reviews) I started seeing more and more problems with it. They seemed like they had to shoehorn in callbacks to the earlier movies CONSTANTLY. What was original about the movie? By that I mean, what ideas in the film aren’t just reworkings of something in one of the first two movies? Other than John Connor being the bad guy I can’t think of much, and since that was spoiled beyond belief in the trailers it loses its impact. But even there it boils down to yet again an even more powerful Terminator to fight which is the story of the first three movies. It really feels like a big budget fan film.

      A new thing that was recently pointed out to me, and it just adds to the problems is the jump forward in time. Besides it contradicting everything the Terminator universe time travel is based on, it was idiotic how they did it. Why jump forward to right before Genisys is released and without a real plan to stop it? Maybe take those 20 years to work with Arnold to prepare. Or even if you don’t want to wait that long, how about a sometime earlier in the development of Genisys long before it is self aware and can rush itself to within seconds of coming online?

      I don’t have a major problem with Emilia Clarke, but she is no Linda Hamilton. I watched T2 shortly after seeing Genisys and the difference was striking. Watch Hamilton’s performance, particularly in scenes such as when they are in the desert or when she attacks Miles Dyson’s house. She is really intense. You can feel the anger and fear in that character. Emilia Clarke doesn’t come close in the scenes calling for similar emotions. It wasn’t bad, just not great.

      JK Simmons had the most entertaining character in the movie, but he literally does nothing to affect the plot or move the story forward. He exists solely as comic relief. Remove his character entirely from the movie and you don’t have to change anything. That is bad storywriting.


      • far enough, to each his own preference. I’d also like to give some food for though ( or maybe just something to give my argument for the movie some weight)

        Firstly Fun is a key element of a movie for me, especially when it comes to summer blockbusters. The Fast and (occasionally) Furious movies in recent years have proven that a movie could have a plot that resembles Swiss cheese , and still be a lot of fun, as well as bring in a big audience. As this relates to the Terminator series I’ll say this. After having seen T:G I was willing to see it again in the theater, something I did not feel like doing in regard to 3 and Salvation.

        Second, about rehashing the formula I have to bring up Rocky 5 and Rocky Balboa. Rocky 5 broke from the model of the other three sequels and was a flop at the box office as well as critics. after a decade Stallone goes back to the formula, and liberally uses lots of nostalgia, and callbacks to the other films in the series, and Rocky Balboa is something of a surprise hit (considering where both the franchise and it’s star had been prior to the movie’s release)

        SIDE NOTE: This might note be totally accurate but I’m willing to bet that Rocky Balboa is one of the prime reasons so many nostalgia reboots/sequels have been made. If the Rocky series (which was all but dead after 5) can be a hit, why can’t (insert once popular franchise here)


      • oh forgot to say in T:G Sarah is ten years younger, and hasn’t spent those years hanging around gun runners and the like. Also if you take deleted scenes in to consideration she hasn’t spent an undefined amount of time in a mental hospital being abused by the guards.


    • The Terminator might not be back following #TerminatorGenisys


      • Sadly, Terminator Genisys failed even to break the $100M barrier domestically, finishing out at $89.7 Million. And with Genisys’ poor reception a sequel would probably do even worse stateside, so it’s probably best to leave it alone at this point.


        • The Terminator: Where next for the franchise?

          As plans for more Terminator films are shelved, we look at where the franchise should head next…

          If the return of Arnold Schwarzenegger was supposed to revive the Terminator franchise’s fortunes, then it’s fair to say that this year’s Terminator Genisys fell short of expectations. While the fifth film in the series fared well in the Far East, Genisys’ sour reviews (not least our own) and lacklustre US box-office clearly took their toll. Late last week, we heard that the once-planned trilogy of Terminator films – and a related TV series – were “on hold indefinitely.”

          Appropriately for a franchise about time travel, it’s a case of history repeating itself. Only six years ago, Terminator: Salvation’s middling critical and financial reception left The Halcyon Company’s plans for its own Terminator trilogy in limbo. The Terminator rights were put up for sale, Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures won the bidding war (reported hammer price: $20 million), and the process of rebooting began once again.

          The producers behind Terminator: Genisys had clearly taken a long hard look at Salvation and then promptly drew all the wrong conclusions. The reason Salvation had failed, they reasoned, was because Schwarzenegger hadn’t been a part of it. What fans wanted was a bit of the old Terminator magic: Arnold back in his shades and leather jacket, lots of stunts and chases through benighted LA streets. In short, a return to the form James Cameron had established in 1984 and 1991 – a form which neither Jonathan Mostow or McG had managed to replicate.

          Producers David Ellison and Dana Goldberg admitted as much when we visited the set of Terminator Genisys last year. “…there are going to be great Easter eggs in there,” Ellison said. “There’s going to be a respect for canon. But also, if you haven’t seen a Terminator movie before, we view this as Terminator 1. You don’t have to have seen anything before you see this movie – it’s completely standalone.”

          The result is one of the weirdest would-be blockbusters in years. Terminator Genisys is a kind of greatest hits reel of Terminators past; a muddled check-list of things that might, on paper, have sounded like perfectly sound ideas. The start of the film takes place in 1984 with a recreation of the film that started it all – perfect for getting older fans on side. But then it throws in a variation on the mercury-like T-1000 to please those who preferred its 1991 sequel, Terminator 2: Judgment Day. And to capture a bit of that lucrative Asian market, the T-1000 is played by Byung-hun Lee.

          Then, just to keep the younger members of the audience interested, the action shifts to 2017, where the end of the world comes not with a bang, but with the friendly glow of an iPhone app. For extra geek points, former Doctor Who star Matt Smith is thrown into the mix as an evil AI phantom with plans for world domination.

          It shouldn’t work, and it doesn’t. The muddled plot, which jumps between time periods like a frog on a hotplate, essentially boils down to a string of “trailer moments” – stunts and sequences that look nice enough in isolation, but fail to add up to much of a whole. A young Arnold fighting an old Arnold. A school bus flipping over on the Golden Gate Bridge – a scene which looked like three memorable scenes from The Dark Knight, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, and, weirdly, Dirty Harry, all slammed awkwardly together.

          That flipping school bus sums up quite a bit about what’s wrong with Terminator Genisys. Why did Sarah Connor (now played by a wide-eyed Emilia Clarke) and her fleeing gang of friends steal the slowest vehicle in the parking lot? Why did it flip over like that, anyway? Just because. Don’t worry about it. There’ll be another stunt coming along fairly soon. Look, it has a helicopter in it.

          So now that we’ve established that Terminator Genisys didn’t really work, the question remains: what can be done about it?

          The likely answer is: not a lot, probably. At least for a few years. If production company Skydance really isn’t doing anything more with the franchise, it seems certain that its rights will revert to James Cameron in 2019. He may well have his own ideas for a further Terminator reboot, but with all those Avatar sequels he has planned, will he have the time to direct it himself? It seems more likely that he’ll serve as a producer and story consultant, but will ultimately hand over the task of making the thing to someone else.

          Should all this happen, it’s not hard to imagine Cameron, with his current taste in all things expensive and expansive, in rebooting The Terminator as a $200 million summer movie in the vein of T2. The nature of Skynet and its takeover of Earth will almost certainly change, as it did in Genisys, but the central concept of a time-travelling cyborg and its unwitting prey could – and should – remain intact.

          In fact, if we had a suggestion for a Terminator reboot, it’s this: strip the budget right back and reboot it from the ground up.

          Forget about the multi-million dollar budget, the four-quadrant check list, the absurd action set-pieces and PG-13 mayhem of Genisys. Learn from the essence of the 1984 original: bring the horror element back to The Terminator.

          It’s important to remember that the first film was inspired by a nightmare, and felt like a nightmare from start to finish; a relentless, benighted chase through a Los Angeles that seemed somehow diseased and decaying.

          Forget the time-hopping complexity of Genisys. The Terminator was only glancingly about time-travel, and wore its sci-fi coat relatively loosely. Make the reboot a simple chase thriller again. We don’t really need Arnold Schwarzenegger back – wonderful though he was in the first two films – or even Sarah Connor; what we do need is the hunter and the hunted, the former implacable and seemingly indestructible, the latter unprepared and vulnerable.

          Get in a director who’s young and promising – who can bring a youthful, angry energy and cinematic tension. Look again at this year’s horror hit It Follows and note just how Terminator-like its premise – about a group of teens pursued by staring ghouls – really is. Look again at how perfectly those filthy, infectious supernatural beings dovetailed with the bankrupted Detroit setting, as though the run-down landscape had spontaneously belched them up.

          Now imagine the director of It Follows, David Robert Mitchell, at the helm of a Terminator film – one made for a lean $20 or $30 million.

          A great Terminator film needn’t be expensive or laden with stars – the first iteration was proof of that. The scene in The Terminator, where the T-800 smashes a fist through a car windscreen in an attempt to choke the life out of Sarah Connor, has more tension and impact than the sequence in Genisys where the bus flips over – a scene that likely cost more than The Terminator’s entire stunt budget.

          A shot of the T-800 staring with steely resolve through a gap in a door carried more unspoken menace than all the goofy iterations of Genisys cyborgs put together.

          Genisys made the usual Hollywood mistake that more is more: that what made T2 such a success was its special effects and huge explosions, so they heaped dozens of them on top of each other. But T2 was a great film because it was about characters reclaiming (or discovering) their humanity – the battle-hardened, traumatised Sarah Connor, Schwarzenegger’s reprogrammed T-800 – not just action and special effects. Without relatable characters and a solid, engrossing story, stunts are just that: stunts.

          Like the T-800 itself, the next Terminator film should be a combat chassis, an engine designed for one thing and one thing only – to stalk, to kill, to thrill and terrify.


        • TERMINATOR: GENISYS (2015)

          The continuing saga of humanity’s war with the machines who are led by Skynet the artificial intelligence that decided that humanity needs to be eradicated. John Connor, the one leading the human rebels against Skynet, has a plan to attack Skynet but decides not to take part in it and opts instead to prevent Skynet from implementing it’s contingency plan

          To send a terminator to kill the woman who would give birth to John, Sarah Connor. But he fails so he sends his right hand, Kyle Reese who is the one who will sire him, to protect Sarah. And as Reese is leaving he sees John attacked by someone there who is one of Skynet’s soldiers. When Reese arrives, he discovers a terminator which is not like the ones he’s encountered. He is saved by Sarah who knows who he is and why he is there. He also discovers she has a terminator with her. She tells him that the terminator he encountered was sent to kill her when she was nine and the terminator, with her, was sent to save her and has been her companion and guardian ever since. They intercepted the terminator he followed and plan to use it’s chip to activate a time machine they built to go to 1997 which is when Skynet was activated but Reese says they should not go to 1997 but to 2017. He says that there’s a voice or memory that tells him to remember the date because it’s when they can stop Skynet. So Sarah and Reese go, the terminator stays behind and says he’ll meet them when they arrive but they get arrested when they arrive and someone unexpected show up.

          The film feels like a bad romantic comedy surrounded by a tired Sci-Fi franchise that dido my need to be rebooted or sequalized that at this point feels like a cash grab and trying to grasp at past glories.

          What worked for the first two films is they they both seemed to excel and push he special effects at the time to jaw dropping limits. The first one on a limited budget. The sequel on a gender one. Ever since those two it has been diminishing returns as ever since the stories for more outrageous and seemed too much extra. Making storylines and timelines confusing, bloating up the story and effects mainly as it’s creator stepped away from the series of films.

          Each film has had a different brain trust director and writer. Who seems to try to reboot, remake it at least copy the past glory of each film.strangely try to make it their own. Their vision rarely matches. So they each sequel feels like it’s own spin off with the same characters. Yet keeps trying to attempt s continuity.

          Jai Courtney still manages to have no charisma he still has the look of an action star or at least a villains right hand man. Here he does well enough in the action scenes. But here they try to show a vulnerability that just doesn’t work. As well as showing him at first to be a screw up next to the terminator, as he film goes along his action skills get more impressive.

          Emilia Clarke tries but she feels miscast. Try as she might. Then again she doesn’t have much to do and the toughness of her character seems like an act more than something natural. The appeal of the character in the original two films. That Linda Hamilton played the role in was that In the first film she might have depended on a man, but in the end dispatches the terminator becoming her own hero. In the sequel hour she gets help time to time she is also capable of taking people at and fighting for herself. In this film it seems like the character goes in reverse and she is dependent again on two men. Though she is tough. she is barely shown to do anything. Margot Robie and Brie Larson both screen tested for the role of Sarah Connor. Emily Blunt was the first choice for the role

          J.K. Simmons feels here more only as another noticeable face and name in the cast as his role seems here only to be an ally to what he doesn’t entirely understand and save the characters when it looks like a dead end.

          Arnold Schwarzenegger seems to have fun reprising his role. While allowing the unstoppable characters to be noticeably aged and broken down. Though at other times seems to be used also for humor. He worked out for six months, about three hours a day, before shooting started, by which time he had the exact same body weight and muscle measurements as he had 12 years previously while shooting Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. Jason Clarke is the sixth actor to play John Connor in the many portrayals of the character. This has lead to people referring to him as the “Rusty Griswold” of the Terminator series as five different actors have portrayed that role in the many films.

          This film seems only made to do away with previous timelines to create one they can keep making up as they go along.

          One of James Cameron ‘s original ideas for THE TERMINATOR was to have Skynet send two Terminators back to 1984: one being a cyborg, and the other a liquid, shape-shifting android. However, due to the limitations in special effects, the idea for the shape-shifter was not used until TERMINATOR 2 : JUDGEMENT DAY. Interestingly, in this film, Cameron’s original suggestion seems to have been followed: in the altered version of the very first Terminator movie, both a cyborg (the T-800) and a liquid android (T-1000) are sent back to 1984.

          It is obvious this film was made at great expense as the effects and action sequences are huge. The special effects are noteworthy in few scenes, but it still leaves you feeling kind of bland. They are obviously trying to impress the audience, but instead except for a scene to two leaves you feeling like And then.. Especially as these scenes are nice but feel more like Filler then actually necessary. Like it is trying to show off.

          Watching the film. You feel no nostalgia. Not like this is a continuation. We won’t even go near plausibility it any real emotion.

          Even in the beginning of the film. It feels less like a war between humans and cyborg, but more liens laser battle that you would see in classic G.I. JOE cartoons when they battle cobra with red and blue lasers only here they actually cause casualties and damage instead of just stunning characters.

          Ang Lee was in negotiations to direct the film but a deal could not be reached. Other directors considered to helm the film included Rian Johnson and Denis Villeneuve.

          Screenwriters Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier also worked on SCREAM 3. Laeta did uncredited rewrites and Patrick edited the movie. The title “Genisys” refers to “SYS”, a computer term referring to the “System” or critical files that the system depends on to function properly, as well as “genesis”, a beginning or start (in context, the core of the story hinges on time-travel to where the war begins).

          GRADE: C-


  16. After viewing the trailer for “Fear City” (sounds like a sports teams’ fan slogan) I was reminded of Rae Dawn Chong, and not just because I think it’s a fun name to say. I read that there was a sex scene written for her character and Schwarzenegger’s John Matrix character, but Schwarzenegger had it excised since he thought it would be in poor taste for his character to be taking time off from saving his daughter to get a little love’n. I have to say I think that was a wise decision, and reading that elevates the film for me.


    • I was looking ahead at my calendar and Commando has an anniversary coming up. Just sayin’.


      • More awesome facts coming then?


        • I should’ve mentioned “Commando” in my comment, but for some reason I forgot. That “Fear City” trailer though, that’s the raciest trailer for a mainstream film I’ve ever seen!


        • I knew what you were getting at. And yeah, that Fear City trailer is great. The movie is worth a look if you like gritty crime dramas. It’s exactly the movie the trailer is selling.


        • Yep.

          I’m working on three things. More WTHH obviously. And Facts You Need to Know which are shorter and therefore quicker to write. And then galleries which are just a matter of formatting pictures that are already collected in the articles. That balance lets me put out content a bit more frequently than if I just do WTHH.

          I have been using the calendar as a guideline. Generally, I try to post a gallery on each WTHH subject’s birthday. When I prepare the gallery, I go through the old article and scrub it up a bit. I fix any videos that stopped working, add captions to pictures, etc. If I find the article lacking, I may do an update for a full rewrite. August has been a busy month in that respect because of the number of birthdays.

          That’s put me a bit behind on the new WTHH article I’m working on. That’s another balancing act. Trying to deliver new content while also bringing the old articles up to the current standards. Overall, I think the improvements have been worth delaying the new article. The end result will be to have the entire series read consistently. And a lot of these rewrite are practically new articles in and of themselves. But I’m definitely looking forward to posting the next 100% new article.

          So that’s what I have planned for the foreseeable future. There may be a few odds and ends mixed in. At some point between now and the end of the year, I intend to do an article comparing Disney World and Universal. But before I do anything like that, I want to put some space between it and the massive trip report I just wrote. I know Daffy and RB have some things they are working on as well.


        • That sounds like a good gameplan, and a full schedule. As for “Fear City”, I think I viewed a few minutes of it on cable a few years ago, but it was pretty far into the story, then I didn’t see it listed again afterwards. I plan on viewing it in its entirety someday.


  17. 1980s/1990s Arnold Schwarzenegger Appreciation Thread:

    2 hours ago StarSpangled Clash With A Plan said:
    Honestly, I think Arnold’s a slightly better actor than people give him credit for. He’s never had Meryl Streep level range and he’s not gonna win awards, but he always has a strong presence and charm that can help him salvage crap like Batman and Robin.

    He’s very capable. I sometimes think most of the flak people give him for being a bad actor comes from the fact that that’s what they’re supposed to do. A bad actor is somebody who can’t make you feel or believe anything that they do. I usually have a very easy time believing Schwarzenegger.

    I also think his “comeback” over the past several years is severely underrated. In particular, I think Terminator Genysis was tons better than it had any right to be partly due to his presence in the film.

    I do think he would benefit from taking a few more risks, particularly at this stage of his career.


    • Post the exact moment an actor’s career peaked.

      Arnold in T2 was his peak. Even though True Lies was a big hit, he was the King of the Summer movies by 1991 when T2 came out. I honestly don’t think he was ever the same again, as either the Millennials didn’t embrace him the way Gen-X did, or eventually his age would catch up with him (like Stallone) and he couldn’t do believable action movies forever.


      • I actually liked later Arnie films such as “Eraser” and “End of Days”, but those films didn’t seem to capture the public’s imagination.


  18. I’m not so sure that DIE Hard Was ment as a follow up,Cause die hard is based on book,a relatively unknown one,.
    Could be ofc,but sounds like something someone has spun a tale on later,After the movie was a hit


    • The story goes that although Die Hard is based on the book Nothing Lasts Forever, it was at one point pitched as a Commando sequel. According to this story, the names of the characters were changed to match the characters from Commando. I can’t definitely prove this story one way or another. But I did find more than one interview in which screenwriter Steven E. de Souza, who worked on both Die Hard and Commando, debunked this story. That’s good enough for me. I’m going to update this article accordingly. Thanks for asking the question that got me to fact check.

      Once again, Wikipedia proves unreliable. I should start keeping a list.


  19. Arnold Schwarzenegger Replacing Donald Trump As ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ Host:

    By Lisa de Moraes 12 mins ago

    NBC is is replacing Donald Trump with a politician on Celebrity Apprentice. Arnold Schwarzenegger, aka The Governator, is taking over for Trump as chief mentor/executioner on NBC’s reality competition series. “I have always been a huge fan of The Celebrity Apprentice and the way it showcases the challenges and triumphs of business and teamwork,” Schwarzenegger said in today’s news, adding, “I am thrilled to bring my experience to the boardroom and to continue to raise…


  20. @Schwarzenegger on career-changing nudity that happened in ‘The Terminator’ (exclusive)


  21. The CineFiles Podcast: Episode 27

    It’s episode 27 of The CineFiles Podcast and…. it’s Halloween month! Which means — boo! Did we get ya’? Are you scared? This whole introduction will be rife with jump scares so be wary all who enter here. This week, we discuss the films we’ve most recently seen: the Cannon Films documentary ELECTRIC BOOGALOO, the short film PUMPKIN PIE, the oldie-but-a-goodie THE INVISIBLE RAY, FORT TILDEN, POLTERGEIST, THE TURBO KID, THE VISIT, THE FINAL GIRLS, THE GIFT, MOCKINGBIRD, SABOTAGE, CRIMSON PEAK and Eric’s take on THE NIGHTMARE. Plus so much more. We then give our thoughts on the latest news coming out of the Hollywood buzz mill. And, finally — boo! Did we get you that time? Yes? No? I warned you: jump scares, people!

    The second half of episode 27 focuses on that enduring sub genre of Horror, the Zombie Movie. Whether you like your undead to be French, Italian, from the UK, funny or scary (or both), what is it about the living dead that compels us to go back again and again. Please give us your thoughts and tell us about some of your favorite zombie flicks in this installment of The CineFiles Podcast.


  22. Arnold Schwarzenegger chooses his new project – and it’s quite a low key one


  23. 10 Actors Whose Credibility Suffered The Most In 2015

    Arnold Schwarzenegger

    He’ll be back, they said. And so he was, and the results were… well, kind of poor, actually.

    Arnold Schwarzenegger’s highly-publicized return to Hollywood – after a long career doing politics in California, don’t you know? – was supposed to kick off with a bang. Unfortunately, said bang ended up sounding more like a thud, as zombie drama Maggie, which co-starred Abigail Breslin, failed to make back anywhere near the $8 million it cost to make (it grossed less than $1 million) and was savaged by the critics.


    Then there was Terminator: Genisys – the non-awaited fifth movie – which was met with negative reviews and didn’t end of grossing as much as the studio prophesied (though it flopped on its opening weekend, it did eventually gross $440 million, which is still pretty good). The minor financial turnaround wasn’t enough to win audiences and critics around to Arnie’s return, however, and – much to his chagrin – the intended sequel is now in limbo.


    • I think anything dealing with “The Terminator” should be terminated (with a Sarah Connor F-bomb inserted) for the time being. As Lebeau pointed out, there just isn’t really anymore story to tell; to quote Christian Slater’s Mark Hunter character from “Pump Up the Volume” (not “Pumping Iron”), “All the themes have been used up, turned into theme parks”. I don’t know, I’m sure Schwarzenegger will probably find a project down the road that strikes a nerve with audiences; I’m pretty sure he still has appeal.


  24. Podcast discussing each Arnold movie.

    Last Action Hero, The Running Man, and Twins have been posted to date.

    Batman & Robin is next.


  25. I have to say that the WTHH blogs that LeBeau wrote have inspired me to make a YT series with a friend. I mention this here since it’s Arnold and he was involved with Carolco. We made this movie detailing Carolco and of course, it drew heavily from WTHH. We got another one coming out soon centering around Orion, but for now, here’s the Carolco movie.


  26. Unlike his buddy Sly arnold can not act therefore since hes too old for action movies theres not much left to go. Sly oscar nom proved hes more then action star.


  27. I saw maggie he was decent in it not good. At best hes decent. He has never given a performance as powerful as Sly. Sly never started out as a action star arnold did. Sly was dubbed next Brando at one point. It showed he at least had some potential.. I know sly is not in Brandos level but I rank him little higher then those lame action stars. He is much better then Jason Statum ,wesly snipes ,arnold and jackie Chan


  28. Batman & Robin: 25 things we learned from its making-of book

    Arnie had his eye on the global market…
    As author Michael Singer notes, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s involvement as Mr Freeze in Batman & Robin “can only boost his already mighty reputation”. But Arnie also admits in the book that he’s got one eye on the international markets when he takes on a role. “When I read a script one of the first questions I ask myself is whether the movie is for the entire world. For some, perhaps Italy or Germany or Japan or Brazil may be nice places to take a vacation. For me, these are important markets with audiences seeking entertainment, just as Americans do”.
    … but he was always worried about heritage
    “I had to figure out how to separate my Mr Freeze from [Otto Preminger, Eli Wallach and George Sanders’, on the TV show], and how to make it memorable within the context of all the other terrific Batman villains. Because, you know, these movies are going to go on forever, and after people see Batman X, they’ll look back and talk about their favorite villains”, Schwarzenegger also said.


  29. Arnold Schwarzenegger signs up for new action comedy, Why We’re Killing Gunther


  30. Schwarzenegger rescuing a swimmer on WatchMojo’s Top 10 Celebrity Heroic Acts


  31. Retrospective / Review – Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)


  32. Blind Items Revealed #5

    April 18, 2016

    This foreign born permanent A list mostly movie actor who only does small parts in franchises now cheated on his girlfriend and used his son as cover. Nothing like telling the girlfriend you are going to spend some precious father/son time together, but use a VIP room to have sex with a couple of women instead.

    Arnold Schwarzenegger


  33. 1996 Was the Year the Macho ’80s Action Hero Died

    Jean-Claude Van Damme

    In 1996, we got a healthy dose of action movies, but many of them seemed to be more about recapturing earlier greatness than on doing something new and interesting.

    Jean-Claude Van Damme tried to recreate his earlier success in Bloodsport with 1996’s The Quest.For example, Jean-Claude Van Damme directed and starred in The Quest, which is basically a repeat of the classic 1988 beat-em-up Bloodsport. Van Damme even co-wrote the story with the man who inspired Bloodsport, Frank Dux. Because of this and a string of other box-office failures, Van Damme was soon sentenced to the world of straight-to-video movies for the next decade before staging a moderate comeback.

    Arnold Schwarzenegger

    Arnold Schwarzenegger flexes his muscles and fires big guns in Eraser.1996’s Eraser was the last time Arnold Schwarzenegger headlined a major Arnie event movie. Sure, End of Days earned a healthy profit in 1999, but Eraser was Arnie’s last true summer tentpole movie. Try to fathom that for a minute. Twenty years ago, summer tentpoles could be big shoot-em-ups with nothing more than a single actor’s name being enough to draw huge crowds. Eraser wasn’t based on a comic book or any other existing property or series. It was purely a Schwarzenegger vehicle, and it became one of the 10 highest-grossing movies of that year. Now that’s star power.

    Nothing was ever the same for Arnie. He can be in as many Terminator sequels as he wants; his old glory is never coming back.

    Sylvester Stallone

    Daylight was the start of Sylvester Stallone’s quick descent as an action star.Sylvester Stallone’s career arguably peaked in 1985 with the release of the wildly popular sequels Rambo: First Blood Part II and Rocky IV. But he managed to have a few successes in the ‘90s, such as Cliffhanger, Demolition Man, and The Specialist. But then he starred in 1996’s Daylight, which is basically an homage to the 1972 disaster movie The Poseidon Adventure. I watched Daylight years ago, and I remember it being tedious and rarely ever exciting. It underperformed in the U.S., but made quite a bit of money overseas.

    That was the last hit Stallone would be the main star in for the next decade. Cop Land, D-Tox, Get Carter, Driven, and Avenging Angelo all did progressively worse at the box office until Stallone was forced to return to his roots and star in perfectly decent sequels to Rocky and First Blood.

    Kurt Russell

    All of the above action stars saw a turning point in their careers in 1996, but one actor had a film that epitomized the shift in action blockbusters away from what they used to be. That man is Kurt Russell, and the film is Escape from L.A.

    Escape from L.A. is a carbon copy of 1981’s excellent Escape from New York. In the first film, Snake Plissken was tasked with sneaking into the Big Apple via airplane to retrieve the U.S. president and some valuable information he has with him. In the sequel, Plissken is forced to sneak into Los Angeles via submarine to retrieve some valuable information being held by the president’s daughter. The plots are interchangeable, with the only difference that the sequel is not executed very well at all compared to the original. That is, except for the final scene. I have to admit this movie has an incredible final scene that is even more interesting if you think about the lines as though they’re talking about ‘80s action heroes.

    Steven Seagal

    But the pièce de résistance has got to be Executive Decision. Up till 1996, action heroes had been mostly unkillable. Sure, the heroes in the first two Terminator films died to protect the people they love, and Ripley self-sacrificed at the end of Alien3, but at least those deaths had the dignity of coming at the climax. We had never really seen an ‘80s action hero get killed in a perfunctory manner.

    Steven Seagal looks like he’s ready to run the show in Executive Decision.Which is why it was so shocking when we saw what happened to Steven Seagal’s character at the 40-minute mark of the two-hour Executive Decision.

    Seagal had made a name for himself as sort of a hybrid between Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jean-Claude Van Damme. He was built like a tank while also being nimble enough to take down dozens of opponents with his martial-arts skills.

    In Executive Decision, while doing a daring midair transfer of elite marines onto a passenger jet that has been hijacked by terrorists, Seagal’s character runs into severe trouble. All of his comrades and a couple of nerdy technicians make it aboard the jet, but he gets stuck in a passageway that is seconds away from disintegrating, which will cause the jet to decompress and kill everyone on board. Seagal’s only option is to heroically close the hatch just before the passageway breaks apart, tossing him away like a ragdoll and killing him instantly.

    Steven Seagal sacrifices himself early in Executive Decision, turning an ’80s action icon into a disposable character.Can you imagine that happening to John Matrix in Commando or Dutch in Predator or James Bond in any of his movies? This kind of death was unthinkable. Suddenly, the man who couldn’t be killed by a million bullets became all too human, showing that he can be killed just like anyone else. If you wanted to pinpoint the exact moment that the ‘80s action hero died, this is it!

    With Seagal dead, it’s now up to the nerdy technicians to improvise a new plan to stop the terrorists. They have to become the heroes that Seagal was already a natural at playing. The rest of the film never quite lives up to the first 40 minutes because there’s such a gaping hole left from Seagal’s absence. But this was the pattern that other films that year followed.

    Twister and Independence Day were huge blockbusters that heralded the resurgence of the disaster movie after its heyday in the ‘70s. Those two films had the novelty of turning computer nerds into action heroes, carrying the torch passed in Executive Decision to its logical conclusion.

    Exceptions to the Rule

    Star Trek: First Contact turned Patrick Stewart into an action star.There are always exceptions to the rule. 1996 also saw the release of a couple of films that turned dramatic actors into action stars: Star Trek: First Contact (Patrick Stewart) and The Rock (Nicolas Cage). Stewart went on to help start the comic-book era with his indelible role as Professor Charles Xavier in the X-Men films while Cage continued to build his reputation as an action hero for several more years with hits like Con Air, Face/Off, Gone in Sixty Seconds, and National Treasure.

    I should also mention that Tom Cruise is the one shining exception to the rule. He has managed to survive for three decades as an action star by giving people what they want while also somehow reinventing himself every few years. He established the surprisingly versatile Mission: Impossible film series in 1996, and it’s still going strong almost 20 years later.

    Hobbling on

    Of course, the ‘80s action movie didn’t completely die out after 1996. It hobbled along for a few more years with 1997’s Air Force One, Con Air, Face/Off, and The Fifth Element being particular standouts. But there were also a lot of mediocre or just plain bad movies: Conspiracy Theory, Kull the Conqueror, The Peacemaker, Starship Troopers, and Alien: Resurrection, the two final ones essentially being subpar imitations of Aliens.

    Things got worse in 1998 with the horrible Lethal Weapon 4, Small Soldiers, The Avengers (with Ralph Fiennes and Uma Thurman, not the Marvel one), and Soldier (with an extremely wooden performance by Kurt Russell). The only real standouts were The Mask of Zorro and Rush Hour.

    And in 1999, computer nerds completely took over in The Matrix, which changed the face of action movies for the next decade and beyond.

    Attempting a Resurrection

    There have been plenty of attempts to bring the macho ‘80s action hero back, with indulgent fare like the Expendables trilogy, a fourth Indiana Jones film, and a couple of PG-13 Die Hard sequels. While those had enough nostalgia to turn a profit, they didn’t succeed at rejuvenating this long dormant idea of a one-man army. Comic-book movies have sort of filled that void, but they mostly avoid the hard R rating that characterized the epic shoot-em-ups of the ‘80s and early ‘90s.

    I don’t know if we’ll ever see a resurgence of ultraviolent-yet-humorous blockbuster action films like we did more than two decades ago. Audience tastes change over time and those kinds of films probably just aren’t as palatable enough to generate the huge box-office numbers required to sustain ever-increasing movie budgets. So while I mourn their loss, at least they can rest in peace knowing that they refused to go down without a fight.


  34. It’s hard to see his comeback as anything but low key, which is probably the way he wanted it. I’m sure that he’s savvy enough to know that at his age, and with his glory days of the ’80s/early nineties long behind him, he’s not going to be headlining big action franchises or dominating the box office the way he used to. He’s in a good spot in that he could probably start working with some pretty interesting directors and taking smaller parts in more prestige movies.


  35. Arnold Schwarzenegger Fired Back After Trump Dissed His “Apprentice” Ratings


  36. Arnold Schwarzenegger considering run for Senate (report)


  37. Arnold Schwarzenegger explains why he won’t be in the Predator reboot

    Arnold Schwarzenegger isn’t a fan of Shane Black’s Predator reboot. In a recent interview with Yahoo! Movies, the action star said that he read the script for the reboot early on in the process and didn’t like it, which led to him turning down the chance to make an appearance in the film.

    The original Predator, released in 1987, starred Schwarzenegger as the leader of a team of commandos fighting against aliens in a Central American jungle. The reboot is set to feature Boyd Holbrook, Jacob Tremblay, Keegan-Michael Key, Sterling K. Brown, Thomas Jane, Alfie Allen, Yvonne Strahovski, Edward James Olmos, August Aguilera, and Olivia Munn.

    “They asked me,” Schwarzenegger said of his potential involvement in the upcoming film. “I read it, and I didn’t like it– whatever they offered. So I’m not going to do that. Except if there’s a chance they rewrite it, or make it a more significant role. But the way it is now, no, I won’t do that.”

    Black’s version of the story is already filming, so it’s unlikely that the script will get rewritten for a Schwarzenegger appearance in time. The director further explained Schwarzenegger’s absence on his Twitter, agreeing with a fan who said that they believed it was the role and not the script itself that made the star turn down the part. “I spoke with him,” he said. “I think it was that he didn’t have enough to do. Enough presence in the film.” Schwarzenegger has been planning a return to a few of his old projects recently, with a new Terminator movie reportedly in the works along with a sequel to Twins; however, some of the films have stagnated, included the planned The Legend of Conan movie, which the screenwriter recently said is finished.

    The Predator reboot will be released on Feb. 9, 2018. While we wait, head over to Grunge to see why we’re worried the film may not succeed.


  38. The Legend of Conan reportedly won’t happen

    Sounds like The Legend of Conan will remain just that: a legend.

    Although Arnold Schwarzenegger has been talking up a storm about his future projects, including a long-awaited return to the Conan the Barbarian franchise, screenwriter Chris Morgan (who was one of several different writers working on a sequel), told Entertainment Weekly that the project has stalled.

    “At the end of the day, the studio decided that they weren’t gonna make that,” Morgan said. “I gotta say, it’s honestly a heartbreak. I love that first movie so much, so much, it’s one of my favorite movies.”

    Morgan said writer Will Beall (Gangster Squad) penned a draft that would’ve picked up the Conan story much later in the Barbarian’s life. “[Beall] killed it. Our take was Conan, 30 years later, a story like the Clint Eastwood Unforgiven. It was so awesome.,” he said. “Ultimately, the budget was big, the studio was not really sure of the title, and the relevance in the marketplace. They ended up letting it go.”

    Although a feature film might not be in the works, that doesn’t mean it’s the very last we’ll hear from Conan. “I think they’re gonna look to do a TV show or something with it,” Morgan said. “But just to be associated with it, pitch it to Arnold, have him get so excited, there was a moment of magic for me, personally. You never know, down the road we may revisit.”

    Schwarzenegger recently said the Conan sequel is one of a few projects he’s got coming down the line, along with another Terminator movie and a sequel to the 1988 comedy Twins. But with so much on his presumably large plate, it’s possible he isn’t up to date with all the backstage dealings. He does, however, have an explanation for why he won’t be in the upcoming Predator reboot and why he won’t return for The Celebrity Apprentice.


  39. ‘Conan the Barbarian’ at 35: How Darth Vader Helped Arnold Schwarzenegger Beat the Muscle Man Stereotype


  40. Did the Last Action Hero ruin Arnold Schwarzenegger’s film career?

    According to this imdb quote “Arnold Schwarzenegger considered Last Action Hero (1993) his first real failure after an unbroken string of successes. He also considered it the beginning of the end of his film career.” The film was widely considered a failure when it was released as it failed to double its budget and it also received poor reviews. However even after TLAH, True Lies and Eraser both did over 100m domestic and 200m+ worldwide. I would have thought that films like Junior, Jingle all the Way, Batman and Robin and End of Days would have had far more negative impact on Arnold’s career even though he seemingly disagrees. What does reddit think?


  41. Arnold Schwarzenegger donates $100K to an anti-hate organization

    Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Sunday said he was donating $100,000 to help an anti-hate organization, the Simon Wisenthal Center, “named after the great Nazi hunter who I was lucky to call a friend.”

    On Facebook, the Republican politician/actor who is no friend of Donald Trump wrote to “so-called white nationalists,” that “you will not win. Our voices are louder and stronger. There is no white America – there is only the United States of America. You were not born with these hateful views – you can change, grow, and evolve, and I suggest you start immediately.”

    Schwarzenegger announced his donation to the Los Angeles-based center as his way to speak out against the racist and anti-Semitic protests that resulted in three deaths over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: