There’s been a trend in big franchise film making that’s been developing the last few years. Instead of the traditional release of a film followed by a sequel driven by box office results, now producers and directors are filming multiple films in sequence. Often beginning the next film before post production has completed on the first movie. Some are no brainers, The Hunger Games second, third and fourth films never really had a break in production between filming. Certainly nothing like the three or five year breaks between sequels of the past. The latest to jump on this band wagon is the Terminator franchise with Paramount Pictures setting the premiere dates for the next two sequels.
Let’s look back at how and when the Terminator franchise sequels came out:
- The Terminator (1984)
- Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)
- Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)
- Terminator Salvation (2009)
- Terminator: Genisys (2015)
You can clearly see that there were huge gaps between sequels. After we get Terminator: Genisys in 2015 Paramount Pictures has drawn a line in the sand with two additional sequels that will hit the big screen in May 19, 2017, and June 29, 2018, pretty much back to back in the film industry.
It all makes a lot of sense production cost and schedule wise. Lock in the actors, equipment, sets, props and everything else that goes into making a movie without the break period in between where you have to gather all those together again. At the same time it is a bit of a gamble.
What if the first tanks at the box office and doesn’t recapture the initial investment? Some of you are thinking, “Wait, this is Terminator, there’s no way this tanks at the box office,” but let me just say in return, “Expendables 3 and Sin City.” Who would have thought that both of those would have such horrible box office results. I wasn’t expecting them to break box office records, but each should have at least recouped the production costs. We all know that isn’t going to happen with either of those pretty well-known, although arguably second tier franchises.
Will Terminator, beloved franchise that it is, be able to stand up against all the other blockbuster franchise movies from the likes of Star Wars, Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, and DC’s Justice League development movies?
Terminator: Genisys, stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Emilia Clarke, Jason Clarke, Jai Courtney, Dayo Okeniyi, Matt Smith, Byung-hun Lee and J. K. Simmons, hits theater screens July 1st, 2015.
Alan Taylor is directing the first. Will he be back for the next two as well?