In November we will get a legacy-quel in the form of Terminator: Dark Fate. This is set to take place after the events of Terminator 2: Judgment Day and will ignore the rest of the sequels. One of the big draws of the film is the return of Linda Hamilton as Sarah Connor.
Hamilton chatted with Entertainment Weekly about returning to the franchise after all these years.
“There is a real gift in that so much time has passed, and that gives me so much more to explore with the character. Sarah Connor is the same person but I wanted to see how the difference in events have changed her and shaped her and send her forward. There was meat there. I didn’t want to just recycle the same idea. It’s a woman who has a different mission, a different story, so I wanted to see what we could do with that.”
There was some excitement surrounding it, as she thought she was done playing the role after T2 in 1991.
“It was many, many years of just being sure that it was done, that I was done. I kept saying, “Yeah, yeah, if I’m in one now it’s like the geriatrics era.” [Laughs] Which is actually kind of true. I never saw this coming, which made it that much more interesting.”
As for how she returned to the role, it was all thanks to director Tim Miller.
“He called me three times before I even called him back. The third time, he was like, “It’s about work,” and I’m like, “Oh, hey, what’s up?” But, even with that and his big sell, it took me weeks to decide that I really could go there and might have something new to say.”
Hamilton also explained her method of returning to the role, noting that she couldn’t just slip right back into it. It was very hard work.
“It’s not like riding a bike, I’ll tell you that. [Laughs] Of course, one assumes if you put in the same hard work, you get the same results, so I went straight back into training really hard and it’s like, “Oh my god, you need hormones to put muscle on!” So just starting with the basic cosmetics of the character and all of the things that I had to sort of include in my new reality as Sarah Connor. But, really, it’s about building her backstory and figuring out where she’s been and who she is today. You have a character but so many things have impacted her in the last 30 years that it was like starting over, and yet, there is an echo of the younger Sarah Connor in everything that I had to create. But no, I worked damn hard. I spent a year-plus training really hard and working on her walk and exploring her deep sorrows and just so many elements, and more so, because there is a path there. By the time we started, I felt ready, but a year-plus before that, I was pretty overwhelmed with a sense of obligation and duty and love for the character, just really trying to make sure that we honored the past and created something new for the future.”
It is always nice when an actor can revisit a role after many years and still find something fresh and exciting about it. Pair Hamilton’s return with Mackenzie Davis’s role, and Terminator: Dark Fate might be something special.