Linda Hamilton Says She Will Never Return to ‘Terminator’


The Big Picture

  • Mixed feelings surrounded Linda Hamilton’s return for
    Terminator: Dark Fate
    in 2019, despite it being an upgrade from previous films.
  • Hamilton shared strong feelings about her final run as Sarah Connor.
  • She enjoyed working on
    Dark Fate
    but won’t revisit Sarah Connor, emphasizing her iconic role’s conclusion.

When it comes to brand recognition in Hollywood as a dominant action franchise, there are few names that ring home more powerfully than The Terminator. Linda Hamilton, who has starred in three Terminator films to date, sat down with THR to talk about her time with the franchise, most recently with 2019’s Terminator: Dark Fate, why she’s never returning as Sarah Connor, and how long it’s been since she watched Terminator 2: Judgment Day.

It’s safe to say there were plenty of mixed feelings about bringing back Hamilton for one more Terminator film in 2019, given the response to several of the films preceding it, such as Terminator Salvation and Terminator Genisys. The latter brought in new faces such as Jason Clarke and Emilia Clarke, who played John and Sarah Connor, respectively. The consensus upon the release of Terminator: Dark Fate was that while it lacked the thrilling charisma that made the original Terminator movies such a hit, it was still a sizable upgrade over the previous films of the 2000s. It currently sits at a 70% critics score and a commendable 82% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.

Why Is Linda Hamilton Done As Sarah Connor in the ‘Terminator’ Franchise?

Image via TriStar Productions

Artificial Intelligence has become a hot-button topic in Hollywood in the last several years, most recently acting as one of the driving catalysts behind the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. AI has been around in the Terminator franchise since the beginning with Skynet, an innovative and terrifying AI system which was constructed by Cyberdyne Systems. When asked if it was more likely for AI to write the script of the next Terminator movie, or her to return as Sarah Connor, Hamilton had this to say:

“AI writing the next Terminator movie. And they kill me off before we start. That’s the best scenario.”

These are strong words coming from someone who is synonymous with the rise of the Terminator name in the 80s and 90s. Arnold Schwarzenegger may have been the face of the Terminator, but the franchise wouldn’t be what it is today without Hamilton’s work as Sarah Connor. On a follow-up, Hamilton was asked to confirm if Dark Fate was her final run with the franchise, to which she replied, “Shoot me. Shoot me! I’m very glad I did it, but…”

Hamilton went on to mention that while she won’t be revisiting the character of Sarah Connor, she doesn’t feel regret about returning in Terminator: Dark Fate. She highlights that the grueling task of shooting the film at 63 years old was made enjoyable by how much she enjoyed working with director Tim Miller and her fellow costars Mackenzie Davis and Natalia Reyes. Lastly, when asked if she rewatches Terminator 2: Judgment Day or any of her other previous work, Hamilton said:

“No, I don’t. I’m a reader, I don’t turn on the telly a lot. Certainly, I can watch something once, but I’m not watching something over and over again… the glory days? No. None of that.”

Linda Hamilton’s Sarah Connor is one of the most iconic characters in movie history, but at a certain point, it comes time to say goodbye. While not without its flaws, there are far worse sendoffs than Terminator: Dark Fate. Hamilton is currently attached to a recurring role in the fifth and final season of Stranger Things, which is set to premiere on Netflix sometime in 2025.

Terminator Dark Fate Poster

Terminator: Dark Fate

An augmented human and Sarah Connor must stop an advanced liquid Terminator from hunting down a young girl, whose fate is critical to the human race.

Release Date
November 1, 2019

128 minutes

Main Genre

Stream on Disney+


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