Linda Hamilton Keeps It Real: ‘Terminator’ Sequels After ‘Judgment Day’ Were ‘Very Forgettable’

The actress attended CinemaCon and earned rave reactions over footage from "Terminator: Dark Fate."
"Terminator: Dark Fate"
"Terminator: Dark Fate"

Sarah Connor is back and she’s taking no prisoners, including the polarizing “Terminator” sequels. Speaking to Variety on the CinemaCon red carpet, Linda Hamilton got brutally honest when asked about the three “Terminator” sequels that followed her last appearance in the franchise, “Terminator 2: Judgment Day.”

“They’re very forgettable, aren’t they?” Hamilton said. “You start something and you’re invested in the franchise, but somehow the characters that you care about weren’t there. Too many people, too many story points. So I think we’ve done a good job of narrowing down the focus again so it will echo the first two films.”

Hamilton originated the iconic role of Sarah Connor in James Cameron’s “The Terminator” and its “Judgment Day” sequel. Those two films were the only entries directed by Cameron, as the franchise was handed to Jonathan Mostowfor the 2003 sequel “Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines,” McG for the Christian Bale-starring “Terminator Salvation,” and Alan Taylor for 2015’s “Terminator Genisys,” which starred “Game of Thrones” favorite Emilia Clarke as Sarah Connor. “Genisys” was a critical dud and a box office disappointment.

With three “forgettable” sequels under its belt, the “Terminator” franchise hopes to change course with the upcoming “Terminator Dark Fate.” The latest film reunites the franchise’s original stars Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger, while Cameron serves as a producer and was heavily involved in crafting the story. “Deadpool” director Tim Miller is behind the camera.

Hamilton told Variety she initially rejected the offer to return to the franchise before spending some time weighing the pros and cons of what stepping back into Sarah Connor’s shoes would mean.

“I gave it probably six weeks of intense thinking and consideration before deciding to do it,” Hamilton said. “I wasn’t sure if I wanted to. I didn’t want it to look like a shameless money grab. I am living this quiet, lovely life that doesn’t involve being a celebrity, and you really have to think, do I really want to trade that in again for another 15 minutes?”

Hamilton ultimately agreed, and it appears that was a smart decision. Paramount showed off the first footage from “Terminator: Dark Fate” to rave reactions at CinemaCon. The studio is releasing the film in theaters nationwide November 1.

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