Sony Picks Up Terminator

Warner Bros.’ next Terminator has been snatched up for foreign distribution by Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions Group, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Warner will handle the film in the U.S. and Canada, while Sony covers all other territories, with the exception of Korea and certain areas of the Middle East. Currently baring the loquacious title Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins, the fourth entry in the saga will go into production in New Mexico this spring with Batman Begins star Christian Bale signed to play a grown-up John Connor.

Franchise star Arnold Schwarzenegger is not expected to appear in the upcoming film, which is being directed by McG (We Are Marshal, Charlie’s Angels). McG has said in interviews that he is looking for a James Brolin type to play the flesh-covered killer cyborg in the futuristic thriller. The script was written by John Brancato and Michael Ferris, who wrote the successful but not exactly blockbuster Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines.

Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins is slated to hit theaters on May 22, 2009. Meanwhile, the saga is being kept alive on television with FOX airing Warner Bros. Television’s Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, which takes place between the events in the second and third films. The series debuted to strong ratings on Jan. 14 and has managed to hold an audience as the now-ended writers’ strike left viewers with a dearth of other new offerings in scripted television. Time will tell if the show can survive a future inhabited by returning favorites.