He passed on Highlander, but Fast & Furious director Justin Lin still has that other much-loved and latterly wayward franchise he's planning to resurrect. Speaking to Moviehole, Lin revealed that part of his wish-list for Terminator 5 is to bring back Sarah Connor.
Given her cursorily-dealt with death from Leukemia in Terminator 3, that's clearly going to involve more than tearing a page out of the phone book and searching house-to-house, but it does chime with some earlier rumours. Back in June there were some casting whispers that Lin quickly shot down, but there was also talk of the next Terminator being a Star Trek-style reboot, with a ruptured timeline setting up a narrative thread to veer off from the established franchise without necessarily contradicting what's gone before.
"I think the great thing about this franchise is that you can actually have different canons," confirms Lin, "because you have the element of time travel. So, there’s a way of kind of respecting all the works but also being able to create a new time line. Sarah Connor is such a big part of the franchise, and I’ve always been surprised how in part 3 it was like one line and she was gone. If you go back to the thematic drives of the first film especially, I think that’s a way to be able to reengage..."
It's certainly a way of writing off the horribly botched ending of Salvation, and playing to the strengths of the Chronicles TV series. But crucially, the project is still at its very early stages. Lin has had productive meetings with Arnold Schwarzenegger and new rights-holder Megan Ellison, but there's not even a screenplay yet. "A lot of what we've discussed has been really good," says the director, "but it's necessary to really find the right group of people to execute it, so we'll see how it fleshes out. I have my own criteria set, and [if they don't pan out], I won't make it..."
Hey, the last time that Lin did a fifth instalment in a franchise the result was the gloriously OTT Fast Five, so we can only hope this knocks it as far out of the park...