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Topic: Question to John #2: Days of Future Past & the Terminator (Topic Closed Topic Closed) Post ReplyPost New Topic
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Jerome Bonnet
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Joined: 11 February 2007
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Posted: 11 February 2007 at 12:01pm | IP Logged | 1  

A lot have been written about the sources of inspiration behind James Cameron's picture "The Terminator", including in this forum. Am I the only one to have noticed a possible link with these two sources: "The Skull" (a Philip K. Dick's 1952 short story about a time traveling assassin), and John Byrne's 1981 "Days of Future Past" X-Men story?

When I first watched the Terminator, I was shocked of the similitude between Cameron's post-apocalyptic world and the X-Men's future: the landscape, the giant killing machines, the concentration camps...

John, do you know if James Cameron was reading your stories while he was preparing the Terminator?

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John Byrne
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Posted: 11 February 2007 at 1:37pm | IP Logged | 2  

That I do not know -- but I have noted before that I was surprised by the degree to which "Days of Future Past" resembles the DOCTOR WHO serial "Day of the Daleks". Surprised, that is, when I saw the story for the second time, about a decade after I'd seen it the first time. "Days of Future Past" was plotted somewhere in the middle part of that decade.

From this, I learned the ever-so-important lesson to be wary of storylines that seem to spring from nowhere, almost fully formed.

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John Mietus
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Posted: 11 February 2007 at 1:40pm | IP Logged | 3  

Plagiarist.

(Do I really need a smiley face there to show that my tongue is trying to
poke a hole through my cheek?)
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John Byrne
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Posted: 11 February 2007 at 1:45pm | IP Logged | 4  

No -- but gosh darn it, I sure wish I'd realized my source at the time! Then I could have had one of the Sentinels say "We got the idea from an old 'Doctor Who' episode," and my reputation as a writer of unsurpassed brilliance would have been assured!
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Jerome Bonnet
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Posted: 11 February 2007 at 2:46pm | IP Logged | 5  

Or you could have had the sentinel turn toward Wolverine and say "Exterminate! We will exterminate!"  :-D

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Brian O'Neill
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Posted: 11 February 2007 at 2:52pm | IP Logged | 6  

JB, just blame it on the 'Blinovitch Limitation Effect'.
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Philippe Pinoli
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Posted: 12 February 2007 at 4:58am | IP Logged | 7  

Cameron usually says he was more than inspired, for the terminator character, with Yul Brynner role of a dressed in black killing robot role in 1976' Mondwest (a must-see), that Crichton partially plagiarized too, as fun park gone crazy, for Jurassik Park.      
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Michael Cross
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Posted: 12 February 2007 at 5:11am | IP Logged | 8  

Didn't Michael Crichton also write Westworld?  I wouldn't call it plagiarizing per se as he's ripping himself off.
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Philippe Pinoli
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Posted: 12 February 2007 at 5:14am | IP Logged | 9  

oups memory fades wth age.

Btw did U knowq Crichton was 2m06 !!!

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Jerome Bonnet
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Posted: 12 February 2007 at 5:50am | IP Logged | 10  

 Philippe Pinoli wrote:
Yul Brynner role of a dressed in black killing robot

If I remember correctly, it was a robotic cowboy.

I've never thought of a link between that robot and the Terminator. On the other hand, it looks like a clear source of inspiration for Arcade's cowboy robot, doesn't it?

 

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Brian Crispkey
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Posted: 12 February 2007 at 8:15am | IP Logged | 11  

The scary thing about Westworld was that the Brynner robot never ran
anywhere. It just walked at its own pace, like it knew it was only a matter of
time before it caught and killed the guy it was after. Creepy.
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Peter Hicks
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Posted: 12 February 2007 at 8:24am | IP Logged | 12  

James Cameron's Terminator was much more inspired (ripped off?) from two stories Harlan Ellison wrote for the original Outer Limits, namely "Soldier" and "Demon With a Glass Hand".  In both stories, soldiers from future wars are transported back in time to our present, where hostilities continue.  Demon With a Glass Hand is amazing.  Soldier...not so much.

James Cameron was interviewed by Starlog while making Terminator, and when asked where the idea had come from, he jokingly said, "Oh I ripped off some old Harlan Ellison Outer Limits scripts!".  He later phoned Starlog to request they NOT print that.  They agreed, but one of their staffers was a good friend of Ellisons, and told him so.  Ellison made some legal threats at the studio, and they agreed to add a credit that the story was inspired by Harlan Ellsion's concepts somewhere in the fine print of the end titles for any subsequent prints of the movie.  Supposedly, Harlan just wanted the recognition; no money ever changed hands.

 

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