The Terminator franchise has done pretty much everything at this point. We’ve seen it turn out several motion pictures, a TV series, and countless other tie-ins that have woven in and out of continuity. But now, after Terminator: Dark Fate lived up to its name at the box office, the series is heading back to TV once again. Now, though, it’s got The Batman’s Mattson Tomlin to help reinvent the time travel saga.
News broke through THR that Netflix and Skydance Productions, the current company involved in the production of the Terminator franchise, are looking to reinvent the story of humans versus machines in a pretty fitting format. If you’ve ever wondered what Sarah Connor or a T-800 would look like in the style of an Anime series, then this is your lucky day, as that’s exactly what’s happening. But past that point, we don’t really know what this ontological paradox holds for the future of this landmark blockbuster. Though Mattson Tomlin did say the following, when laying out his approach to the Terminator legacy:
Anyone who knows my writing knows I believe in taking big swings and going for the heart. I'm honored that Netflix and Skydance have given me the opportunity to approach Terminator in a way that breaks conventions, subverts expectations and has real guts.
It’s also the first time since Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles went off the air in 2009 that an episodic treatment of Skynet’s big beef with meat bags has been in the works. While it only lasted two seasons, the Lena Headey / Summer Glau starring show had such a cult following that its cancellation before a third season still has some fans sore about it to this very day.
Mattson Tomlin and Netflix’s approach to The Terminator movies is similar to the strategy that the streaming network is taking with another sci-fi favorite. As Pacific Rim: The Black is about to tell a story in a pre-existing cinematic universe, but with a new set of circumstances and characters, there’s a pattern afoot. Just as Pacific Rim: Uprising underperformed at the box office, there’s a chance that Netflix could resurrect these brands with their television prowess. If either of these animes perform well, especially on a platform like Netflix that’s banked heavily on the medium, then there might be a chance that new movies could exist to tie into these clever new spins.
While we don’t know when Terminator’s anime will be available for viewing, we do know that Mattson Tomlin and his studio backers are ready to do something that’s never been done in James Cameron’s sci-fi universe. But, while we’re waiting, we can see how Pacific Rim: The Black bodes for Netflix’s resurrection game, as the series is set to debut next week, on March 4.