Actors often star in a role that fans will always remember them for, and they still relive these roles in a way, through cheesy revisions of their famous lines. At this point it is almost impossible to imagine someone else portraying the role.
IGN reports that Arnold Schwarzenegger almost did not star in Terminator. The actors new memoir is out now, titled Total Recall. The book features an interesting excerpt that discusses his time working with James Cameron on the film. Schwarzenegger describes how he almost didn't take the job. At the time, Schwarzenegger was trying to build his career around heroic roles and didn't want to reverse his image by playing a bad guy.
Here is an excerpt where Schwarzenegger talks about his ideas for who was going to play the killer cyborg:
"I told Cameron: 'One thing that concerns me is that whoever is playing the Terminator, if it's O.J. Simpson or whoever, it's very important that he gets trained the right way,'" Schwarzenegger says in the book. "Because if this guy is really a machine, he won't blink when he shoots.
"'When he loads a new magazine into his gun, he won't have to look because a machine will be doing it, a computer. When he kills, there will be absolutely no expression on the face, not joy, not victory, not anything.' No thinking, no blinking, no thought, just action."
Luckily, Cameron was able to convince Arnold to take the role. Schwarzenegger took the role very seriously. the book states:
"I worked with guns every day before we filmed, and for the first two weeks of filming I practiced stripping and reassembling them blindfolded until the motions were automatic. I spent endless hours at the shooting range, learning techniques for a whole arsenal of different weapons, getting used to their noise so that I wouldn't blink."
He goes on to talk about how one of his biggest disagreements with Cameron was over the line 'I'll be back,'" he continued.
"That... scene took a long time to shoot because I was arguing for 'I will be back.' I felt the line would sound more machine-like and menacing without the contraction.
"'Let's stick with I'll,' [Cameron] said. But I wasn't ready to let it go, and we went back and forth. Finally Jim yelled, 'Look, just trust me, OK? I don't tell you how to act, and you don't tell me how to write.' And we shot it as written in the script."
Interesting bits from this book. I may have to actually pick it up and give it a read. I personally can not imagine someone else playing the Terminator other than Schwarzenegger. If he was not in the role, who could you see playing the part?