While promoting the upcoming theatrical re-release of Terminator 2: Judgement Day, director James Cameron revealed that, given the opportunity to make any updates to the film he felt necessary, there was only one correction he made to the original cut. When speaking with Entertainment Tonight, the filmmaker pointed out that one specific continuity error always bugged him, even if audiences never even noticed.
"There's a shot that always bugged me," Cameron revealed. "When the tow truck smashes down into the drainage canal and chases the kid on the bike. The windshields fall out when it jumps into the drainage canal and then they're back in for the whole rest of the sequence. We put them back in."
He added, "That's not really an editing change, we're just punching it up. It just bugged me and I thought, 'Are people not gonna notice this?' The editors say, 'Nah, nah, it goes by so fast, you'll never notice it,' but I always see it. My justification is that if I had the digital technology to fix it then, I would have."
One of the most successful re-releases of films came in the late '90s when George Lucas debuted the Special Editions of the original Star Wars trilogy. The filmmaker didn't just update visual effects or correct continuity errors, but went so far as to shoot new footage, incorporate deleted scenes, and, of course, made Greedo shoot first.
Cameron, on the other hand, knew he had to power to make those changes but opted to avoid them.
"George Lucas, I think he constantly had new ideas and wanted to punch up those films," Cameron confessed. "I felt like, I've changed as an artist, why would I want to second guess myself on what I was thinking in '91? I actually think the movie stands. I didn't feel a compelling need to change anything editing wise. Other than to just get it to the highest possible standard of color and picture and everything else."
With recent announcements coming from Cameron about helping develop a new installment in the Terminator franchise, the filmmaker clearly has a strong connection to the source material, which fans share with him.
"As a filmmaker, it's a really fun reward to know that an entire generation later, people who only know the film from video can now see it the way it was meant to be seen," Cameron gushed. "I was very proud of the 70mm movies in 1991, even though 70mm was already in decline, to me, that was the gold standard of the cinema experience. Now we've gone so far beyond that, with 4K digital conversions of the movie, 3D conversion, it looks better than it's ever looked, plus it's in 3D."
The 3D re-release of Terminator 2 will hit theaters August 25.