Arnold Schwarzenegger Wanted More Kills in Terminator 2 to Outdo Sylvester Stallone

Actor Arnold Schwarzenegger wanted more kills in Terminator 2: Judgment Day because he wanted to beat Sylvester Stallone.

Throughout the ’80s and ’90s, Schwarzenegger and Stallone had an infamous rivalry as the two most popular action heroes in Hollywood. Schwarzenegger would have hits like The Terminator, Commando, and Predator, while Stallone would turn out Rambo movies, Rocky movies, and other films like Cobra and Over the Top.

At the height of their hubris, Schwarzenegger reunited with director James Cameron to appear in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, widely considered to be one of the greatest sequels of all time. This film took Schwarzenegger’s villainous character from the original 1984 film and turned him into a hero. This was a bold move that Schwarzenegger was initially unsure about.

“The reason why it became a big hit was number one, Jim Cameron,” Schwarzenegger said at a panel discussion at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. “Jim Cameron is a genius writer. He came up with this brilliant idea, even though, at the beginning, I was suspicious. He said, ‘I want to make you a good Terminator.’”

“I said, ‘What do you mean a good Terminator?’ I was killing 68 people in the first one,” he said. “In the second one, I have to kill 150. We go up! Cut their throats and shoot them with a cannon and run them over with a car.’ I had to outdo Stallone. I said that my whole mission was being number one at killing amounts of people on screen.”

Cameron was unperturbed by Schwarzenegger’s pleas, saying “Hasta la vista baby” to his requests. “He said, ‘Arnold, stop it. You’re a very sick guy. I am gonna make sure that in Terminator 2, you’re not gonna kill one single person,’” Schwarzenegger said. “I said that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. How can this be Terminator 2 without me killing anyone? At least throw a few token bodies in there.”

How long is Terminator 2?

Terminator 2: Judgment Day is 2 hours and 17 minutes.