Arnold Schwarzenegger returning as Terminator

No, you did not misread that headline.  Arnold Schwarzenegger is attached to star in a Terminator sequel currently being shopped around town.  Presumably, it will take place 50 years after Terminator Salvation, when the machines send back a flabby, depressing shell of their previous Terminator to bankrupt the humans’ economy. (I love me some Arnold, and it hurt me to say that, but come on). Oh, and 5 Fast 5 Furious‘s Justin Lin is set to direct.  Oof. And we thought McG was bad.

Schwarzenegger is attached to star in a rights package that CAA is shopping today that will revive The Terminator. I’m told that already, Universal, Sony and Lionsgate, and CBS Films are looking hard at the package.

Some might even say that they’re staring, gaping, virtually salivating over the Schwarzenegger package, ogling it with imaginary goggles like a Brazilian stripper.

This is the first real activity on the Terminator project since February 2010, when the property emerged from a bankruptcy auction and into the possession of Pacificor, a Santa Barbara-based hedge fund, who posted a bid of $29.5 million, with the promise that additional multimillion-dollar payments for each film would go to Halcyon, the company that made Terminator Salvation. Halcyon wanted to make several films but ran out of money.

I wrote back in February that Universal quietly was trying to arrange for Justin Lin to be helmer of the project. At the time, some turned up their noses. Given the strong international grosses being racked up by Fast Five and the expectations for a strong domestic opening this Friday, Lin has a lot of heat. [Deadline]

The one thing I’ve ever seen Justin Lin do that wasn’t terrible (and don’t say Better Luck Tomorrow, that was basically a direct-to-DVD 50 Cent movie with Asians in it) was the Modern Warfare episode of Community (which, to be fair, was awesome). Terminator always demanded a bit of realism, whereas 5 Fast 5 Furious is more like pro wrestling with cars, where it’s constantly rubbing its complete lack of believability in your face to prove just how much you’ll put up with to see sweaty men yell at each other.