Now that his political career has ended, Arnold Schwarzenegger is looking to return to the silver screen. In a recent interview with the Austrian website Krone, the former governor said he wants to model his comeback career after Clint Eastwood, focusing on roles that stress acting over action. Schwarzenegger also said he’s been looking over several scripts, including one involving the true story of a Nazi soldier who saved a group of children he had been ordered to kill.
While I don’t blame a 63-year-old man for wanting to move away from action films, choosing a dramatic role right out of the gate might be a little risky. If anything, Schwarzenegger needs to ease back into the business by covering some familiar territory. Mind you, that doesn’t mean he has to go out and film another Terminator film, or re-team with Sinbad for Jingle All the Way 2, but it wouldn’t hurt him to get a hit or two under his belt before he goes after an Oscar.
Conan the Barbarian (Remake)
The remake of Conan the Barbarian is well underway, and Schwarzenegger was reportedly approached for a cameo in the film. Producer Avi Lerner supposedly offered the then governor a million dollars for one day’s work, and went as far as agreeing to shoot in Sacramento. While Schwarzenegger did not accept the role, he also didn’t turn it down, leaving Lerner to believe the door is still open.
I know that Arnold doesn’t need the money, but $1 million for a day’s work is hard to pass up. And what better way to launch a comeback than by appearing in a remake of his first major film? Even if it bombs, no one will hold Schwarzenegger responsible. It’s win-win.
Avatar 2 and 3
If there’s a director who is responsible for making Schwarzenegger a household name, it’s James Cameron. By casting the Austrian bodybuilder in his Terminator films, Cameron catapulted Arnold to the top of the Hollywood food chain, making him, arguably, the biggest movie star in history. As it just so happens, Cameron is still making movies, and he’s currently working on small, indie production known as the Avatar franchise. Perhaps you’ve heard of it?
At any rate, I know Arnie wants to move away from his action-oriented past, but a role in one of the Avatar sequels would be too good to pass up. And unlike many action films, Avatar actually has a story. It’s a simplistic, ham-fisted cliche of a story, but a story none the less. And while a man in his 60’s might look out of place kicking ass, these films are built around special effects. Seeing Arnold piloting a robot exoskeleton wouldn’t be all that far fetched in the context of the film. Or maybe he’d end up getting a bright-blu Avatar of his own. Actually, I hope it’s not the latter. I’d like nothing more than to see Schwarzenegger take out a whole boat load of those primitive blue bastards. We’re supposed to cheer for the humans, right?
If James Cameron is responsible for making Arnold Schwarzenegger’s career, Ivan Reitman is responsible for reinventing it. With films like Twins and Kindergarten Cop, the director gave Schwarzenegger the chance to break away from action roles and showcase his comedic potential. So if the actor is serious about staying away from action, why not re-team with Reitman for Ghostbusters 3?
Yeah, I know. This film is far from a sure thing, and unless Bill Murray decides to stop being Bill Murray, it’s never going to happen. But if it does go forward, it might prove the perfect comeback vehicle for Schwarzenegger. There’s going to be an unbelievable amount of hype surrounding the film, which means expectations will be massive, but on the plus side, Schwarzenegger as a villain couldn’t be any worse than Vigo the Carpathian.
The Dark Knight Rises
Everyone associated with the film Batman and Robin has a lot to answer for. Arnold Schwarzenegger is no exception. While he was far from the worst aspect of the movie, his portrayal of Mr. Freeze certainly won’t be remembered as a career highpoint. That being said, perhaps his performance would have been adequate if a different director had been at the helm.
I know this is a long shot, but what better way to make up for ruining the last batch of Batman films than by giving a stellar performance in the third installment of the Nolan franchise? Professor Hugo Strange is rumored to be the villain, and I don’t know if Schwarzenegger has the chops to pull off that role, but I can’t help but think there’s a part he could play, especially if he’s serious about moving away from one-dimensional characters. It’s doubtful Nolan would intentionally establish a link between his Batman films and those of Joel Schumacher, but if Schwarzenegger ever has the chance, I’d like to see him take it.