When Arnold Schwarzenegger first played the titular cyborg in Terminator when he was 37, and then returned to play the role again in 1991 at the age of 41. He last played the Terminator in 2003 for Terminator: Rise of the Machines, and at that time he was 56. Rise of the Machines explained the older-looking Schwarzenegger by saying that he was an older model, the T-850 instead of the T-800. Now Schwarzenegger is 66, and he’s still happy to be playing a killer robot, and never has a catchphrase been used so literally. The series is undergoing a reboot of sorts with Terminator: Genesis, and yet he’ll still be around, so how is he going to be back this time?
Speaking to MTV about how a clearly aging Schwarzenegger is going to keep playing a robot, he says:
“The way that the character is written, it’s a machine underneath,” Schwarzenegger continued. “It’s this metal skeleton. But above that is human flesh. And the Terminator’s flesh ages, just like any other human being’s flesh. Maybe not as fast. But it definitely ages.”
This raises the question of why Skynet has chosen to put old flesh on anything when it keeps making new models such as ones made out of liquid metal. However, there is the time travel aspect to consider, although I’m sure that will be confusing in its own right since the John Connor (Jason Clarke) in this movie is older than Sarah Connor (Emilia Clarke).
As if this wasn’t confusing enough, Schwarzenegger added:
“Terminator deals a lot with time travel, so there will be a younger T-800,” Schwarzenegger added, blowing our minds, “and then what that model does later on when it gets reprogrammed, and who gets a hold of him. So it will be all kinds of interesting twists in the movie, but I feel so good.”
So if it’s a young T-800, is it a model that still looks like Schwarzenegger or is it the same line of robots but with different “flesh” on top?
At least one thing Schwarzenegger said is clear:
“It will be challenging because it will be a new director, and it will be a really action packed movie,” Schwarzengger said of the movie, which starts shooting in April. “And sometimes it does get more difficult when you’re 66 years old and doing this kind of action, versus when you’re in your 30s or in your 40s.”
The film also stars Emilia Clarke, Jason Clarke, and Jai Courtney. Terminator: Genesis opens July 1, 2015.