Terminator: Dark Fate Is Rated R And Continues John Connor's Story, James Cameron Confirms

Linda Hamilton as Sarah Conner in Terminator: Dark Fate
(Image credit: (Paramount))

Wait.. there’s another Terminator movie? The franchise really does take the famous “I’ll be back” line seriously, doesn’t it! After over 15 years of missteps from the movie series, Tim Miller’s Terminator: Dark Fate is going back to what made it great. Check out what James Cameron recently said about the project:

I think the best way to think about Terminator: Dark Fate is to think about it as a direct sequel to Terminator 2, the third film in a series, if you will. We'll be continuing with Sarah's story, John's story, and the T-800 returns -- a different T-800 with a very different role to play than what we've seen before.

So if you haven’t already wiped Rise of the Machines, Salvation and Genisys from your memory, the upcoming action flick will do it for you as it will ignore them all. The film also marks the first time James Cameron will return to the franchise as a writer and producer. He also brought Linda Hamilton’s iconic Sarah Connor back to the story, though it did take some convincing.

In his interview with Flicks and the City, he said he wrote a long email expressing to Linda Hamilton how much fans love her and want to see her return to the role. He also was interested in the idea of bringing a strong woman to the big screen who is over 60 in a world where young empowering heroes such as Captain Marvel and Wonder Woman have gained traction.

Dark Fate will also bring back Arnold Schwarzenegger as T-800 but, as Cameron teases, he will have a completely different role in this film then he has before.

Another interesting tidbit is that the movie will also address John Connor’s future. John was not shown in the first trailer, and so far there has not been an actor announced to play Sarah’s son in Dark Fate. He'd presumably be in his 40s by now ... if he's still alive. Rumors, via Bloody Disgusting, suggest we may be getting a flashback to a T2-era John Connor, using a young actor as a CGI stand-in. It doesn't look like T2 actor Edward Furlong will be returning, in any case.

James Cameron continued by explaining how Dark Fate will feel more related to the series' first two entries:

I think, tonally, what makes this a direct sequel to T1 and T2 is as much about the tone as it is about the narrative: It’s R rated, it’s grim, it’s gritty, it’s fast, it’s intense, it’s very linear. The whole story takes place in 36 hours. It’s not this kind of grandiose, complex story. It’s just very focused on the characters, it’s very now, it’s very present and it’s just a fast white-knuckle ride.

Yes!! What made the first two Terminator movies great were how intense they were as Sarah Connor had to escape and fight against the lethal Terminators trying to kill her and then her son. In Dark Fate, MacKenzie Davis’ Grace and Sarah Conner will be protecting Natalia Reyes’ Dani from being hunted down by Gabriel Luna’s new Terminator.

James Cameron went more in-depth about the movie’s story with these words:

The principle of our movie is that there's an inevitable conflict between humans and the intelligent machines that they make. And all [Sarah Connor has] done is kick the can down the road from her future back in the '80s to our future now in 2019. Judgment Day is right around the corner, yet again. It's an inevitability. So she's kicked the can, she's going to have to try to kick it again and again. The war never ends. So Sarah has become a Terminator hunter. She’s not waiting to be hunted by a Terminator, she hunts them. She’s figured out a way to be there when they pop through time and she just blows their shit away.

A trailer was recently released for the film and showed MacKenzie Davis’ character Grace may be a machine who is so vastly intelligent that she could be deemed human. Sarah Connor will be teaming up with her to fight the war, but her existence could certainly become a conflict in the film.

It will be especially exciting to witness Sarah Connor’s return, now as an even more badass “Terminator hunter." James Cameron said the writers have mapped out a three-story arc that will be set in motion with this film, so if it does well, we could be in for a new trilogy. Terminator: Dark Fate hits theaters on November 1.

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

YA genre tribute. Horror May Queen. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.