A full 35 years after she first played the role of Sarah Connor, actor Linda Hamilton is still the textbook definition of what that character represents. Going from a typical female target of a robotic killing machine in The Terminator to a badassed hero in Terminator 2: Judgement Day, her performance is a lynchpin to what fans expect from the series. So the news that she was indeed returning in Terminator: Dark Fate to play the part she made famous was something that made fans actually happy to see yet another film taking place in this famous franchise; and we all have James Cameron to thank for that.
While James Cameron previously told the world the story about that fateful phone call he made to bring Linda Hamilton back to the fold for Terminator 6, she explained the scenario that drew her back in with the following details:
You know, it was basically a phone call from James Cameron. Well, he had to call me three times for me to call him back… But once he told me the idea and I actually sat and thought about it for six weeks... Did I want to go there again? But once I'm in, I'm in.
The exact idea that captured both Linda Hamilton and James Cameron’s imaginations isn’t totally revealed just yet, but knowing that Terminator: Dark Fate is supposed to wipe the slate clean back to the end of Terminator 2: Judgement Day, we can kind of see what brought her back into the fold. Most importantly, the fact that Sarah Connor’s alleged death after a battle of cancer, as noted in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, is now erased.
Last seen, or rather heard, in Terminator: Salvation, Linda Hamilton hasn’t appeared on camera as the key figure in humanity’s defeat of Skynet since the last time James Cameron actually directed a Terminator film. Though Deadpool director Tim Miller is the helmer behind Terminator: Dark Fate, Cameron is the most hands-on he’s been with the film as a producer and shaper of the story that marks the sixth film in the series. And as Hamilton confirmed with ET Online at CinemaCon, he was the person to really win her over on coming back.
Part of me is excited that Terminator: Dark Fate will see Sarah Connor suiting up again, but there’s a nagging feeling that part of James Cameron’s pitch involves delivering Sarah to the Grim Reaper himself, as the torch is apparently being passed to the younger generation of this series. That usually means those who built the foundations find themselves iced, so as to prove that the situation is truly serious.
Ultimately, whether Sarah Connor lives or dies, if Linda Hamilton thinks that Terminator: Dark Fate has such a good idea that she has to be a part of it, that should excite the fans awaiting her return. When a character as formidable as Sarah Connor gets a proper end, with full approval by the person who brought them to life in the first place, there’s no better fate than that very scenario.