Arnold Schwarzenegger Won't Do 'Expendables 4' Without Sylvester Stallone

The Expendables franchise is in even more trouble following Sylvester Stallone's disappointing departure from the action film series last week.

Much of the passion for this throwback action franchise comes from star and producer Sylvester Stallone, who rounded up a combination of his old action movie friends and some of the newer meatheads on the block for an assembly of mercenaries who shoot big guns, create big explosions and always take down the bad guy. Now that he's gone, some of the franchise's key players don't have much of interest in returning, like Arnold Schwarzenegger.

News of Arnold Schwarzenegger leaving The Expendables franchise comes from Entertainment Weekly, which spoke with the actor as he promotes his upcoming movie Aftermath (watch the trailer here). Schwarzenegger didn't mix any bones about not returning for The Expendables 4 now that Stallone is out of the picture:

"There is no Expendables without Sly. I would never do the movie without him, no."

That's a decision the actor is willing to make without even knowing much of anything about the movie. The actor confirms, "I have not seen the script; I don't even know if there is a script, even though they want to shoot in August again like they usually do." Schwarzenegger is just loyal to his longtime friend, fellow action star, and Planet Hollywood investor.

Having said that, Schwarzenegger did take the time to throw some shade at The Expendables 3, which he thought gave him a poorly written role. The actor elaborated:

"I think the first and second one were terrific. But, the third one, I thought my part was not written well. It was also not playing well in the movie, as far as I was concerned. Maybe other people believed differently. But I didn't believe that I had any value in the movie. I love the franchise, by the way. I think it's a spectacular franchise, The Expendables. I think that Sly has good ideas, what he wants to do with it, and I think if they write a really good script [in] which my part is very well-developed, I would do it. If not, then I won't do it."

I'm not sure I'd call the first two films in the franchise terrific, but they accomplished what they set out to do, even if the first one took itself a little too seriously. The second one had much more fun, but by the time the third one came around, I think fans had gotten everything they wanted from seeing a huge ensemble of action stars have a big shootout.

If The Expendables 4 falls apart and loses all the stars from the previous installments, that might not be such a bad thing. It would give the franchise a chance to move forward and become something else. Maybe they can even turn this into the once developing Expendabelles spin-off that was supposed to happen but never got off the ground.