I’ll Be Back: Arnold Schwarzenegger Fought To Change Iconic Line

Arnold Schwarzenegger reveals plenty of dirty little secrets in his new book Total Recall. There’s his affair with Brigitte Nielsen, that whole love child thing, and the most important detail of all, he fought to change his famous “I’ll Be Back” line in The Terminator.

Schwarzenegger says that he had frequent fights with director James Cameron over the famous line. The actor apparently thought that “I’ll be back” was too feminine and wanted his character, a murderous robot, to say “I will be back.”

Arnie said:

“Our biggest disagreement was about ‘I’ll be back.’ I was arguing for ‘I will be back’. I felt that the line would sound more machine-like and menacing without the contraction. It’s feminine when you say the I’ll, I complained, repeating it for Jim so he could hear the problem. ‘I’ll I’ll I’ll. It doesn’t feel rugged to me.’ He looked at me like I’d lost my mind.

” ‘Let’s stick with I’ll,’ he said. But I wasn’t ready to let it go, and we went back and forth. Finally Jim yelled, ‘Look, just trust me okay? I don’t tell you how to act, and you don’t tell me how to write.’ “

According to IMDB, the line “I’ll be back” was voted by the American Film Institute as the 37th greatest movie quote. Premiere Magazine ranked it at #95 on its list of The 100 Greatest Movie Lines in 2007.

Arnie continues:

“We shot it as written in the script. The truth was that, even after all these years of speaking English, I still didn’t understand contractions.”

According to Gone Movies, Arnold Schwarzenegger only speaks a total of 74 words in The Terminator. Three of them helped solidify the actor as an action icon.

Do you think the Terminator should have said “I will be back?”

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