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James Cameron Reveals His True Inspiration Behind Terminator 2: Ecstasy and Sting

Mediaite logo Mediaite 7/1/2021 Leia Idliby
James Cameron standing in front of a cake: 2018 Winter TCA Tour - Day 10 © Provided by Mediaite 2018 Winter TCA Tour - Day 10

Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

Ever watch a James Cameron movie and wonder, “What was this guy on?”

Well, turns out that Cameron was high on ecstasy, listening to Sting, when inspiration for Terminator 2: Judgment Day hit.

Talking to The Ringer as part of their Oral History feature, in which the site details the making of hit films and other content, Cameron revealed how he made one of Hollywood’s best sequels.

“I remember sitting there once, high on E, writing notes for Terminator, and I was struck by Sting’s song, that ‘I hope the Russians love their children too,’” Cameron said. “And I thought, ‘You know what? The idea of a nuclear war is just so antithetical to life itself.’ That’s where the kid came from.”

So, John Connor was born from a sweet, sweet combination of ecstasy and Sting — which honestly checks out.

Cameron’s big reveal may also explain why there are some discrepancies with John Connor’s age throughout the franchise.

“In T2, John’s year of birth is clearly stated to be 1985, and that movie takes place in 1985. In the next sequel, though, John states he was 13 years old during the events of T2. This was a major plot hole,” explained Screen Rant’s Jessica Beebe. “There were also discrepancies with Sarah Connor’s ages – she was technically supposed to be only 19 years old in the first movie, but clearly appears to be in her mid-to-late 20s. However, because of the time travel elements of the movie – which include parallel timelines – the filmmakers were able to write off most of these errors to best serve the story.”

Or, perhaps the timeline issues were simply due to a rushed script:

“I wound up writing [T2] right up until the very last second where I had to get in a limo and squirt to the airport and jump on a big charter jet that Carolco [Pictures] was using to fly in all of its stars and filmmakers to Cannes in early May of 1990. And I’m scrambling down to the wire to get this script done and printed out and my printer fucked up,” Cameron told The Ringer.

“I’m printing this thing out and I’m supposed to have left already 20 minutes ago. I literally pull it out of the laser printer hot, put a clip on it, and shove it in a gym bag and haul ass to the airport. And I walk on the plane and all of the big agents and movie stars and filmmakers in Hollywood are all sitting there, all in their seats, and you could hear a pin drop. And I have to walk all the way down the aisle past all these accusing eyes. It’s like, ‘Oh, yeah, you think you’re special, don’t you? There’s always one.’ I’m like, ‘I know, guys, I know. Sorry.’ Anyway, as I’m going by, I hand the script to Arnold.”

I read it on the plane on the way over there,” confirmed Arnold Schwarzenegger, also interviewed by The Ringer. “I remember that very well.”

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