Want To Buy The Terminator?

Rights to franchise being auctioned off

Pssst! Mister! Wanna buy an unstoppable killing machine from the future? Barely used, not a mark on 'im, got a certificate of authenticity somewhere in me van. 'Course, you don't get none of his screen outin's to date; it'd only be for future films, like. Ahem. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, The Terminator rights are up for auction, and it's anyone's guess who John Connor and his robot enemies will end up with.

Halcyon, the company that made Terminator Salvation, is putting the rights on the block this month, with every major studio having expressed an interest as well as smaller outfits like Summit, Platinum Equity and Media Rights Capital.

Sony Pictures, who distributed the latest film around the world (Warners had it in the US), are said to be leading contenders for the franchise, but if we've learned anything from daytime TV it's that auctions could go any which way.

A bigger question will be how much they go for. The last film didn't quite deliver the huge box-office that the makers undoubtedly hoped for, and the TV series The Sarah Connor Chronicles struggled for ratings and was cancelled after only two seasons (one of those abbreviated by the writer's strike). While there's undoubtedly affection for the franchise and loads of name recognition, it may be worth a little less now than it might have been a few years ago.