One of the most successful actor-director collaborations ever is the relationship between Arnold Schwarzenegger and James Cameron.
The pair first worked together on The Terminator and would subsequently collaborate on Terminator 2: Judgement Day and True Lies. A real friendship blossomed away from the screen, too.
But, that doesn't mean it has always been smooth sailing, as Arnie was initially critical of the T2 script as, in his opinion, his version of the T-800 should continue to be a killing machine like the first movie.
“We were pals at this point," Cameron recalled to The Ringer.
"Post-Terminator, we rode motorcycles together. And he said, ‘Jim, I have a big problem with the script.’ I said, ‘Well, what is it?’ And he said, ‘I don’t kill anybody.’ I said, ‘I know, right? They’ll never see that coming. Nobody will guess it.’ He said, ‘I know, but one thing is surprise. Another thing is I don’t kill anybody and I’m the Terminator.'"
After some convincing by Cameron, Schwarzenneger saw the challenge of switching personas from the villainous robot of the first movie to the heroic father figure in the sequel.
“How do you make people believe that this is the same guy we’ve seen in the first Terminator? Now all of a sudden, he’s protecting the human race and protecting this kid? How do I switch over to that," the actor recalled.
In the Netflix documentary, Arnold, the A-lister spoke of the conversation with Cameron with regards to the Terminator's murderous tendencies. Cameron promised Arnold that he would at least get to shoot numerous people in the leg in T2...
Schwarzenegger also discussed how he felt seeing Linda Hamilton's buff physique in T2, which you can read about here.
The Terminator - from villain to hero
As Schwarzenegger's T-800 remains one of the most iconic villains ever, it was asking a lot of the audience to now imagine him as the reprogrammed hero and protector of John Connor.
But, Cameron didn't want to convey that this was a major twist, and included in the trailers how this particular Terminator had been rehabilitated.
“All of us have had our battles with the Suits, but the case you mention was not a battle," he insisted.
"The Carolco guys, Mario Kassar and Andy Vajna , were good partners with me on T2, and I led the charge on marketing, including showing Arnold as the good guy. It wasn’t a Sixth Sense kind of twist that’s revealed only at the end of the film. He’s revealed as the Protector at the end of Act One. And I always feel you lead with your strongest story element in selling a movie.”