O.J. Simpson Was Definitely Not Cast As ‘The Terminator,’ Insists James Cameron About Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Claims

It’s always a trip to hear about bad pitches from the 1980s and ’90s. Ralph Macchio, for example, told us about a Karate Kid/Rocky pitch that he endured, and of course, Arnold Schwarzenegger had a little fun discussing a franchise from the same era. It’s a story that makes it seem like Kyle Reese’s “come with me if you want to live” line could have been seen in a different light once the mid 1990s hit. (Surely, I’m not the only one who would have felt that way.)

This discussion isn’t something that James Cameron appears to relish, however. Back in 2019, Arnold (the former Stallone frenemy) went and told The Independent that “it was actually O.J. Simpson who was the first-cast Terminator.” He continued while declaring that Cameron “felt that he was not as believable for a killing machine,” and that’s when Arnold got the gig. He added, “That’s really what happened.”

Fast forward to Cameron’s continuing Avatar: The Way Of Water tour, and Variety follows up with excerpts from HBO Max’s Who’s Talking To Chris Wallace, and Cameron admits that the pitch came his way, but it was an early one, and he shot it down.

“Very early on, a highly placed person at one of the two studios that funded that film had a brilliant idea and called me up and said, ‘Are you sitting down?’ I said, ‘Well, no, I’m not.’ He said, ‘Are you sitting? O.J. Simpson for the Terminator!’ I said, ‘I actually think that’s a bad idea.’ It didn’t go anywhere.”

So, is that the final word? Let’s hope, although Simpson has been known to weigh in on what he hears, so he may very well do some talking.

(Via Variety)