Extended future war - Time-displacement complex
T2 omitted scene
Another omitted part from the future war is the interior of SKYNET's time-displacement complex and the time-displacement equipment. Originally, Reese was send back in the T2 opening.
The three rotating rings, one on each axis, were the power focus of the entire chamber and were to be created full-scale for pre-activation shots and be replaced by possible computer graphics when in motion. One of the difficulties inherent in the scene was hiding the nakedness of Reese as he was suspended and tumbling within the whirling rings. The T2 ring design ended up appearing in 1997's Contact.
Van Ling (Creative Supervisor), in T2, the Book of the Film, An Illustrated Screenplay:
The original 5/10/90 draft contained an extended future war scene that not only addressed the defeat of Skynet and the backstory of how Reese and the Terminator went back through time as mentioned in the first film, but also the backstory of the second film on how the second Terminator was sent through. Cut from the script after the first draft, the scene -- although rich in action and resonance to the first film and its concepts -- was a narrative tangent to the main story of the film and would have cost an inordinate amount of time, money, and effort to produce. This future scene also had the adult John Connor as its narrator.
The final Future War sequence was substantially reduced in both narrative and scope from the version in the original 5/10/90 draftt --which included Skynet's defeat by the human Resistance and the time-displacement scene with Reese-- for a variety of reasons, not only due to the enormous cost of designing, building, and shooting the battle sequences, but also because the original longer version delayed the process of getting into the main plot, which begins with the arrival of the two Terminators. Through the course of production, the sequence was scaled down and simplified into a short documentary-style prologue, which actually enhanced its narrative value, for although it was not strictly necessary to the plot to show the war, its inclusion of the film serves as both a visceral illustration of what the characters in the film are fighting to prevent, and a narrative reminder to the audience of the world postulated by the first film.
Terminator 2 script (5/10/90):
EXT. CITY STREET - DAY Downtown L.A. Noon on a hot summer day. On an EXTREME LONG LENS the lunchtime crowd stacks up into a wall of humanity. In SLOW MOTION they move in herds among the glittering rows of cars jammed bumper to bumper. Heat ripples distort the torrent of faces. The image is surreal dreamy... and like a dream it begins very slowly to... DISSOLVE TO: EXT. CITY RUINS - DAY Same spot as the last shot, but now it is a frozen landscape in Hell. The cars are stopped in rusted rows, still bumper to bumper. The skyline of buildings beyond has been shattered by some unimaginable force like a row of kicked-down sandcastles. The sky glows, dark as iron. A freezing wind blows through the desolation, keening with the sound of ten million dead souls. It scurries the snow into drifts, stark white against the charred rubble. Fire and ice. The image is without color... lifeless as the moon. A TITLE CARD FADES IN: LOS ANGELES, AUGUST 11, 2029 ANGLE ON a heap of fire-blackened bones. Skulls identify them as human. WE BEGIN TO TRACK, revealing beyond the mound a vast tundra of bones and shattered concrete. Skulls like eyeless sentinels. The rush hour crowds burned down in their tracks. We hear a MAN"S VOICE, gentle, though rich in authority, and tempered by the pain of watching a world die. MAN (V.O.) It all came down on a Tuesday in September of '99. Pretty normal day, except for the end of the world part. Somehow, I don't remember how, we started calling it Judgment Day. I was in Argentina that particular Tuesday. A good place to be, considering everything alive north of the equator stopped being alive... WE DISSOLVE TO a playground... where intense heat has half-melted the jungle gym, the blast has warped the swing set, the merry-go-round has sagged in the firestorm. Small skulls look accusingly from the snow-drifts. WE HEAR the distant echo of children's voices... playing and laughing in the sun. A silly, sing-songy rhyme as WE TRACK SLOWLY over seared asphalt where the faint hieroglyphs of hopscotch lines are still visible. MAN (V.O.) Afterward it got cold. Real cold. Nuclear winter they called it. The few that survived, starved... CAMERA comes to a rest on a burnt and rusted tricycle... next to the tiny skull of its owner. A metal foot crushes the skull like china. MAN (V.O.) The few that survived that saw the Machines rise up... machines of many types but with one purpose... to hunt us down and kill us all like a bunch of cockroaches... TILT UP, revealing a humanoid machine holding a massive battle rifle. It looks like a hydraulically-actuated CHROME SKELETON. A high-tech death figure. It is a combat chassis, the underlying component, or endoskeleton, of a Series 800 Terminator. An antipersonnel weapon controlled by Skynet, a computer which is threatening the human survivors of the war with final extinction. The endoskeleton's glowing red eyes compassionlessly sweep the dead terrain, hunting. Then suddenly snap toward CAMERA. ENDOSKELETON POV (DIGITIZED) as it racks a RUNNING FIGURE across the desolate landscape. Through these eyes we see the world as a computer-generated image. Symbols and graphics rapidly appear on the center display as the machine acquires its target. THE FIGURE, a young boy in rags, is centerpunched by the deadly round. He sprawls to a smoking heap on the blackened sludge. ANOTHER FIGURE, a guerrilla soldier hefting a battered RPG rocket launcher. THE ENDOSKELETON turns, too late. The rocket vaporizes the top half of it. Its bottom half takes a few uncertain steps, then topples to the earth. MAN (V.O.) Our stubbornness makes no sense to their machine minds. We fight when logic tells us we are beaten. But we have a saying... it's not over 'till its over. It keeps us going. The war against the Machines is in its thirty-first year... The figure quickly takes cover at the approaching SOUND of ROARING TURBINES. A shadow blackens the sky as a formation of flying HK (Hunter-Killer) patrol machines passes overhead. PAN WITH THEM toward the jagged horizon, beyond which we see flashes, and hear the distant thunder of a pitched battle in progress. CUT TO: EXT. BATTLEFIELD - DAY THE BATTLE. Human troops in desperate combat with the Machines for possession of the dead Earth. The humans are a ragtag guerrilla army, made up mostly of troops from Southern Hemisphere countries... Africans, South Americans, Australians. The survivors of the nuclear war between the Northern Hemisphere super-powers. This is the reality of the post-Apocalyptic world. North of the equator we all die. We hear radio chatter in Spanish, interspersed with Swahili and other African languages. The occasional Aussie unit can be heard. The humans use RPG launchers, plasma-pulse battle rifles, and home-built armored personnel carriers. Skynet's weapons consist of the massive ground HKs (tank- like robot weapon-platforms) flying HKs, medium weight four-legged gun-pods called Centurions, the humanoid Terminators in various forms (600, 700, and 800 series), and small, fast-crawling kamikaze units called Silverfish that look like 5' long chrome centipedes. The Silverfish snake into gun emplacements and explode. SEQUENCE OF RAPID CUTS Explosions! Beam-weapons firing like searing strobe-lights. Energy bolts crisscrossing frame. Hand-launched Stinger missiles blowing an aerial HK out of the sky. A Sapper team tries to disable a ground HK. They get riddled by its rapidly tracking gun turret. A TEAM OF GUERRILLAS is being overrun by terminator endoskeletons in the ruins of a building. One by one, the soldiers fall in desperate hand-to-hand combat. One of the terminators looms over a wounded soldier, its battle rifle's barrel swinging down toward the guerrilla's head. The man stares defiantly into his death. Then... Suddenly, amazingly, the terminator stops, freezing in place... Aerial HKs tilt slowly, out of control, and crash to the ground. All the terminators stand frozen, unmoving, like a bunch of toy soldiers. The sudden silence takes the humans by surprise. They slowly emerge from their rat-warren emplacements and approach the frozen machines. We hear a voice speaking over a radio headset. It is filled with awed emotion. HEADSET VOICE (O.S.) ... The Colorado Division confirms that Skynet has been destroyed... The war is over... I repeat, Skynet has been destroyed. CAMERA TRACKS along the soldiers, bleeding, frostbitten, wrapped in rags... Valley Forge with better weapons. The wounded soldier in the ruins of the building cautiously approaches the chrome skeleton before him. He pushes against its chest with one finger. It topples with a crash and lies still. The soldier turns to his comrades with an idiot grin. Tears are streaming down his face. A mighty cheer goes up from the men and woman of the Last Army. INT. TIME DISPLACEMENT COMPLEX - L.A. - LATER A STAINLESS STEEL ELEVATOR SHAFT, going deep into the bowels of the earth. Tiny figures stand on an open platform which descends rapidly, becoming a speck. ON THE PLATFORM. An imposing man, surrounded by a team of guerrilla officers stands on the platform as it descends. He is JOHN CONNOR. Forty-five years old. Chiseled. Stern. The left side of his face is heavily scarred. An impressive man, and clearly one forged in the furnace of a lifetime of war. The voice we heard continues now. CONNOR (V.O.) My name is Connor. It's my job to lead these people. My mother, Sarah, gave me the job... and she's not exactly someone you say "no" to. I wish to God I had. I've sent thousands to their deaths. But let me tell you about death in this world. We piss on the bones of a billion people. Death's not what it used to be. If there is a God, his love and 45 cents will buy you coffee... The platform reached its destination. Connor and the officers step off. Begin moving down a long corridor. INT. CORRIDOR This place was designed by machines for machines. The architecture is alien, without aesthetics, without even such human basics as doorknobs and lights. Connor leads the team past more frozen terminator endoskeletons, deactivated like the ones on the surface. CONNOR (V.O.) All these machines were controlled by a kind of God, a low-rent self- appointed God called Skynet. Skynet was a supercomputer built for strategic defense back in the Nineties. Today we destroyed it in its fortress in the Colorado Rockies, and all its toys stopped... As they continue on, they pass other teams of guerrilla soldiers. CONNOR (V.O.) This place is one of Skynet's toys. A machine built by machines.It is like nothing which has ever existed before... the first tactical time weapon. Before today, no human had seen this place, but I've been here in my dreams many times. All my life I've tried to imagine what it would look like. Now I'm actually here... INT. TIME DISPLACEMENT CHAMBER Vault-like doors open. Connor strides through with authority and purpose. He is saluted smartly by everyone he encounters, though he wears no insignia of rank. There is a bustle of hurried activity here. The chamber is the size of a high-school gym and consist totally of machine surfaces. Nothing in the design makes any sense. We can't tell what anything does. It is a technology we cannot imagine. CONNOR (V.O.) Skynet, being almost infinitely smart, was also infinitely tricky. It knew it was losing, so it thought of a way to rig the game... Technicians have pulled up floor panels and tapped directly into cabling of the machine, using portable terminals that they have wheeled in. Many of the soldiers in this war against machines are technical specialists... you have to fight fire with fire. CONNOR (V.O.) And now, though we've won the war, there is still one battle left to fight. The most important one. It will be fought in the past, almost four decades ago... before all this began... See, the only problem with time travel is... it ain't over even when it's over. At the far end of the room, a young soldier stands surrounded by a team of technicians. KYLE REESE. Sarah Connor's defender, teacher, and lover in the first film. A simple soldier who is about to walk point-blank into the gaping maw of history. At the moment, he is the center of activity. As he finishes stripping off his battle uniform, the techs begin smearing his body with a conductive so the time-field will follow his outline. Reese looks around at all the activity. Battle and the prospect of death have never scared him. But the importance of what he is about to do terrifies him. The techs move aside and suddenly John Connor is standing beside him. Connor... their grim messiah. Their leader. He fixes Reese with an intense gaze. There is so much he wants to say, but cannot bring himself to. Finally Reese speaks. REESE Did you know I'd be the one who volunteered? Connor nods. CONNOR I've always known. Sarah told me. Reese nods. Suddenly understanding everything. REESE That's why you moved me to your unit? Kept me so close. Connor shrugs enigmatically. One of the techs interrupts them TECH We're ready, Sergeant. THREE ENORMOUS CHROME RINGS, one inside the other, are suspended in a circular hole in the center of the room's floor. John and Reese approach them. Reese steps onto the first ring. It bobs under his weight. We see that the rings are freely floating in a magnetic field. Reese steps to the inner ring and looks into the hole. A vast echoing darkness below. He looks back at John. The messiah is waiting for him to step into the bottomless pit. CONNOR Sometimes you have to put your faith in the machine. Reese takes a breath, then steps into open space and is buoyed up by an unseen field of force. He floats in the middle of the rings. The techs start the time displacement sequence. THE RINGS BEGIN TO MOVE, slowly rotating around each other on different axis like some complex gyroscope. THE FLOOR BEGINS TO SPLIT OPEN, like wedges in a pie which begin to pull back from the center. The rings are spinning faster now, suspended in space in the middle of the receding floor wedges. The rings begin to descend. JOHN AND REESE LOCK EYES as they move apart. Reese is dropping into an unbelievably vast circular space... the time-field generator. John watches him go, until Reese is a tiny figure. The rings are spinning so rapidly now they almost disappear, becoming a sphere of whirling steel. Technicians pull John back from the edge. LIGHTNING BEGINS TO ARC across the vast room below. A huge charge of energy is building up. Everyone takes cover behind blast walls they have set up. They put on goggles like they used to do at A-bomb tests. This is going to be big. The chamber below has become a Hell of energy with Reese at its center. The drone and crackle of the machines builds to thunder, there is a BLINDING FLASH OF LIGHT! When the glare fades the floating rings are empty. They slow to a stop, seared and smoking. Reese is gone. FUENTES, one of the officers, turns to Connor. FUENTES Now what happens to Reese? I mean, what did happen? Connor's gaze seems far away from this time and place. CONNOR He accomplishes his mission and in doing so, he dies. FUENTES He is a good soldier. Connor solemnly nods. CONNOR Yes... He's also my father. FUENTES Mother of God! Fuentes stares at Connor in amazement. He has just been given a glimpse into his leader's private Hell. Connor turns from the smoking chamber. He seems suddenly ten years old as his features drain of strength, shoulders sagging. Fuentes shouts an order to a waiting Sapper team. FUENTES Sapper team. Set your charges. Let's blow this place back to Hell. Connor shakes his head no. Mustering his strength. CONNOR Not yet. There's one more thing we have to do. TIGHT ON MASSIVE DOORS OF STEEL, covered with a thin sheet of ice. Locking bolts slam back. Ice shatters like glass as the doors begin to open. We are in-- INT. COLD STORAGE FACILITY Connor walks into the darkness, followed by a few technicians. They are in a vault-like cold-storage room. Hanging in steel racks from ceiling tracks are hundreds of what appear to be men. They are in rows of ten. Within each row, each of the bodies are absolutely identical. Connor signals the techs to remain by the door and walks out among the dark bodies. They are UNACTIVATED TERMINATORS. He stops at a row in which they are identical to the terminator which was sent to kill Sarah (the Arnold model). He walks to the end of the row. There is one empty rack. He faces the terminator in the next rack. Its eyes are closed. John seems distant as he studies that face. Fuentes enters the chamber, pushing past the technicians. Calls for his leader in the darkness. FUENTES John?... John?... TIGHT ON CONNOR, his face pensive as Fuentes calls his name. Fuentes voice slowly dissolves to ANOTHER VOICE. A woman's. Echoing as though from a great distance... CUT TO: This audio transition takes us directly to the scene of young John Connor in the Voights' garage in the present- day. The use of a sound dissolve between the two voices calling John's name while holding a tight shot on his face works as a flashback-style transition to bridge the future and the present.
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