Arnold Schwarzenegger revealed Wednesday in his Netflix docuseries “Arnold” that he almost didn’t say his iconic line in 1984’s “The Terminator.”
“Sometime in the middle of the shoot, we’re doing this police station scene. The line is, ‘I’ll come back.’ It wasn’t meant to be like a big moment at all,” Cameron explained in the docuseries. “It was literally meant to be, on its face, ‘No problem, I’ll come back.’ For some reason, Arnold didn’t say, ‘I’ll come back.’ I said, ‘Well, just say “I’ll be back.” Keep it simple.'”
Cameron co-wrote “The Terminator” with Gale Anne Hurd, and clearly didn’t want Arnie’s input on anything to do with the script. “And he says, ‘Are you the writer?'” Schwarzenegger said of Cameron during filming. “And I said, ‘No,’ and he said, ‘Well, don’t tell me how to fucking write.'”
Schwarzenegger said that the line “I’ll be back” sounded too funny to him, and he felt that a cyborg wouldn’t really use that kind of phrasing. (RELATED: Arnold Schwarzenegger Says He Wants To Work With ‘Yellowstone’ Co-Creator Taylor Sheridan)
Cameron, of course, was absolutely on the money when it came to the line. “I’ll be back” is arguably one of the most iconic and well known sentences in film history. “It became the most quoted movie line, I think, in the history of motion pictures. So this just shows to you who was right and who was wrong,” Schwarzenegger conceded.
You can watch the full trailer for the documentary here: