Terminator franchise may survive

California-based Pacificor LLC, a hedge fund, has made a final bid for the rights to the “Terminator” film (and television?) franchise in the bankruptcy case of Halcyon Holding Group, according to Reuters and other news sources.

At SF-Fandom we have speculated on what the Terminator auction might mean in the long-term. The offer by Pacificor may actually be good for science fiction fandom, since it implies that Pacificor may want to see more theatrical releases.

Moving a franchise from the cinematic circuit to Direct-to-DvD is considered by many people to be the kiss of death. Even a transition from television to the DvD market seems fraught with peril, although there have been too few examples for us to really assess the impact of such strategic moves.

When Stargate: SG-1 went off the air, the studio promised fans three Direct-to-DvD movies. Only two of those movies have been released, but recently Michael Shanks was cited as suggesting that the third Stargate SG-1 movie is on indefinite hold.

Terminator fans should therefore take hope that Pacificor’s offer to pay $5 million for each new movie at least encourages more production. On the other hand, $5 million isn’t very much money. Pacificor’s offer may only be positioning the franchise for a Direct-to-DvD channel.

We’ll just to wait and see what other partners in the franchise (Sony Pictures and Lionsgate Films) have to say.

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