‘The Terminator’ At 30: Cameron And Hurd Speak Out Against ‘Fear-Based Hollywood’

The Terminator is 30 years old.

It’s hard to believe it’s been 30 years since James Cameron put his stamp on the cinematic world with a futuristic sci-fi tale starring an Austrian bodybuilder named Arnold Schwarzenegger, who returned to our time as the devastatingly scary Terminator. The film was made for a mere $5.6 million, and after it was released in 1984, it changed the lives of James Cameron and producer Gale Anne Hurd forever.

In the last 30 years, both The Terminator’s director and its producer have gone on to do some great things. James Cameron, of course, continued his stellar career getting involved with the Alien franchise, making Titanic, and is now working on the second of three planned Avatar films. Hurd hit a home-run with AMC’s renowned series, The Walking Dead.

The concept of The Terminator is moving on as well. The Terminator: Genisys films will begin arriving in theaters in 2015, and though James Cameron isn’t involved in them, he did have a bit of input, according to Deadline.

“I wasn’t interested in producing it or working on it actively, but I did want to put in a good word for Arnold. I pointed out that the outer covering (of the Terminator) was actually not synthetic, that it was organic and therefore could age. You could theoretically have a Terminator that was sent back in time, missed his target, and ended up just kind of living on in society. Because he is a learning computer and has a brain as a central processor he could actually become more human as he went along without getting discovered.”

Cameron went on to talk about how original ideas, like The Terminator, are a dying breed in Hollywood.

“Original ideas are rare in mainstream filmmaking. There has to be some underlying IP in order to gather enough momentum for studio executives to make decisions the way they make decisions, which is fear-based. They have to fear making the movie less than not making it. The moment they’re afraid the guy across the street will make the movie and they’ll look stupid – that’s when they’ll make the film. There’s no sense of ‘I want to make this movie, I believe in this movie.'”

Gale Anne Hurd said that The Terminator was difficult to get made 30 years ago, and would probably be impossible to get made today.

“Ninety-nine people rejected ‘The Terminator.’ All you need is the 100th to say ‘yes.’ What great films share is that they’re character-driven. The plot revolves around choices the characters make, and the characters propel us into the story. Audiences respond to that. Studios, unfortunately, are not taking the same kinds of risks. If something doesn’t already exist as a successful book or comic book or game, it’s very hard to get original films made.”

Thirty-one years after the original Terminator hit theaters, the latest reincarnation,Terminator: Genisys, will be released on July 1, 2015, according to IMDb.

[Image via neogaf]