The Future Of The 'Terminator' Franchise Is Uncertain

Paramount Pictures and Skydance were really hoping that Terminator: Genisys would be a hit to reinvigorate the popular but struggling sci-fi franchise originally launched by James Cameron in 1984. But despite endorsement by the Avatar filmmaker, the flick hasn't really impressed fans or critics, and with just $278 million at the worldwide box office so far (only just over $81 million of that from the US), it's not nearly as successful as the studio hoped.

Way before the film even hit theaters, Paramount had set dates for two Terminator sequels to arrive on May 19th, 2017, and June 29th, 2018, with the assumption that they would be shot back-to-back. But now the future of the Terminator franchise is uncertain.

Find out more about the potential Terminator sequels after the jump! (Spoilers ahead for Genisys.)

THR has the report on the future of the Terminator franchise, with one Paramount source saying, "We will definitely need to see the holds globally to confirm that people like the film." For a franchise that always has Arnold Schwarzenegger tout, "I'll be back," it sounds like it's no longer a foregone conclusion.

The dating of future sequels is never a sure thing. Release dates not only get switched all the time, but more often than not, news of sequels are announced and dated in order to give the audience more confidence and reason to see the forthcoming film. If they know that this is the beginning of a longer story with more chapters, then they might be more inclined to check it out.

In the case of Terminator: Genisys, the sequels seem wholly necessary in determining just what the hell was going on in the convoluted, unnecessarily complex time travel of the story. If you haven't seen Terminator: Genisys and you don't want to hear any spoilers, then stop reading right now.

In Genisys, we learn that Matt Smith's character is Skynet, now taking on a tangible form. But this is not the same Skynet we know. Writer Laeta Kalogridis explained:

"He's not from this timeline. He's from an alternate universe, in the multiverse, another of the many universes that exist. That Skynet is not from that timeline. This Skynet has been to this universe, and this universe, and this universe. That's why he says, "I came a very long way to stop you." He's not from here. So he's watched it. He's watched it happen a bunch of different times, and each time he's seen it there is a different result but the same result."

This change in the mythology of Terminator seems to be meant to set up a future that would likely involve much more time travel and messing with other timelines. There's even a credits scene that shows Matt Smith's Skynet is still alive, and would likely be back to cause trouble in sequels that would help explain how he came to be like this, and maybe even what he's done in other Terminator timelines. But honestly, Terminator: Genisys did nothing to get me excited for anymore sequels, so I don't have an investment in seeing what happens.

But now that future remains uncertain even with actors like J.K. Simmons (easily the best part of Terminator: Genisys) signed on for sequels already. We'll just have to wait and see what happens. For more on the future of the Terminator franchise and the rest of Skydance Productions lucrative properties, check out our interview with executives David Ellison and Dana Goldberg right here.

Do you want to see more Terminator movies? Did you like Terminator: Genisys?