10 Facts About Terminator 2 That Deserve A Thumbs-Up
Terminator 2: Judgment Day took everything that was good about the first Terminator film and made it bigger and better, and also added in some truly cutting-edge special effects.
While the newer Terminator films have consistently disappointed, T2 and Aliens made James Cameron the king of the action sequel, a reputation so firmly established that it even survived his street-cred ruining shift into epic romance with Titanic. Let’s take a look back at this classic action film with some facts about Terminator 2 that you may not have known…
10. The production team used Shredded Wheat for the nuclear apocalypse
Terminator 2 is full to the brim with memorable moments, but none are as nightmarish as Sarah Connor’s vision of the apocalypse that gives rise to the machines’ new order. However, the scene with the nuclear explosion occurred on a far smaller scale than you might realise.
A miniature Los Angeles was created especially for the sequence, with crackers and Shredded Wheat standing in for the devastated urban landscape. The end of the world has never been so fibrous!
9. Edward Furlong visibly ages during the film – backwards
Edward Furlong is perfectly cast as a young John Connor, bringing a dramatic depth to what could easily have been another whiny kid role. However, due to the protracted shoot, the pubescent Furlong goes through some visible changes over the course of the movie. More awkwardly, since the sequences were shot out of order, Furlong ages and de-ages throughout.
Furlong’s changing voice had to be pitch-corrected in post-production to account for his varying tone.
8. It’s the only Terminator movie to have won Oscars
Sequels tend not to fare well with the Academy (except for, most famously, The Godfather Part II and The Return of the King). Terminator 2, however, was nominated for six Oscars and won four!
This is especially impressive given that the original Terminator, nonetheless a classic, received no nominations at all.
7. Robert Patrick went through intensive training so he wouldn’t break a sweat
Robert Patrick put in intensive running training so that he could look like he was running hard on-screen without showing that he was struggling or getting tired.
In particular, he focused on exerting himself while subtly breathing through his nose – after all, machines don’t need oxygen!
6. Linda Hamilton suffered permanent hearing loss
While filming the elevator shootout, Linda Hamilton forgot to replace her earplugs between takes and suffered permanent hearing loss in one ear as a result.
5. Hamilton learned to pick locks for real
Terminator 2 is unquestionably Linda Hamilton’s magnum opus. Transformed from her experiences in the first movie, Sarah Connor stands up for what she believes in even when locked up in a psychiatric ward. Taking things into her own hands, she breaks out.
Linda Hamilton spent time learning the skill of lock-picking so she could do it for real on camera, though the success of T2 meant she would never have to put her new skill to more nefarious ends.
4. Schwarzenegger was paid $21,429 per word
Silently imposing, Arnie’s T-800 speaks just seven hundred words in the film, meaning he effectively was paid $21,429 per word.
Running the numbers, this meant that “Hasta la vista, baby” cost a whopping $85,716!
3. A line of children’s toys was produced
Terminator 2 was rated 15 in the UK and R in the United States, so you might think that a line of kids’ toys might be out of the question.
That didn’t deter the merchandisers, however, who produced an extensive line of toys based on the fairly gruesome movie. These action figures became a huge success, which might suggest that a lot of children managed to sneak into cinemas to watch Cameron’s action classic.
2. Michael Biehn could have returned
At one point, the film makers were considering bringing back Michael Biehn, but this time in the role of the evil T-1000 as an ironic role reversal from the original movie.
In the end, this idea was dropped as it was thought to be far too confusing for audiences.
1. The frozen T-1000 scene was filmed with an amputee
For all that Terminator 2 showcased incredible leaps in CGI, director James Cameron still used his fair share of practical effects. For example, in the scene in which the T-1000 is frozen and breaks apart, an amputee actor took Robert Patrick’s place.
The actor’s prosthetics were then removed, with Robert Patrick in place beneath the set to rise up and continue the T-1000’s pursuit. In the finished film, the effect is breathtaking!