Although it's well over a year since the deal for further Terminator films was announced, it's taken this long for the contract between Annapurna Productions and Pacificorp to be signed and sealed. With all the necessary bits dotted and crossed however, Terminator 5, in whatever form it takes, can finally move forward. And the first step on the road is new producer David Ellison.
The Terminator franchise is in some ways an odd acquistion for Annapurna, which has leaned towards indie and arthouse to date, backing the likes of The Master, Lawless and Zero Dark Thirty. In that light, Ellison's arrival makes a great deal of sense. The brother of Annapurna's founder Megan Ellison, he brings major mainstream chops via his own company Skydance, which shepherded Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, Jack Reacher, Jack Ryan and Star Trek Into Darkness into production.
Those projects, you'll notice, all have a home at Paramount, although there's nothing to suggest that the studio is on board for any Terminator action at this point.
Various Terminators have been mooted in the period of development hell since McG's Salvation, but all, including the most recent version that Justin Lin was involved with, seem now to have been scrapped. Annapurna and Skydance will be starting from scratch, and the immediate next job is to find a screenwriter.
Three Terminator films were originally mooted under the new deal, but Deadline believes this has now been scaled back to two. New copyright laws seem to suggest the Terminator rights will revert back to James Cameron in 2019. The clock's ticking.