‘Terminator Zero’ Showrunner Says Anime Series Will Channel “Serial Killer” Vibe Of Original Movie

Although the Terminator franchise is diving into uncharted territory after 40 years, an upcoming anime series also marks a return to form.

Terminator Zero showrunner Mattson Tomlin revealed that his upcoming eight-part Netflix series will channel the “serial killer” vibes of the original 1984 movie as he appeared Friday at the 2024 Anime Expo in Los Angeles.

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The show serves as somewhat of a soft reboot of the franchise, taking place directly after Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), ignoring the films and television show that came after, according to CNET.

Tomlin explained that this version of the Terminator is more of a relentless killing machine like he was when Arnold Schwarzenegger first originated the role, pulling the genre back into its horror origins and away from the action-heavy sequels.

“Can I do one spoiler?” moderator Jacki Jing asked during the interview. “OK: robot cat.”

Terminator: Zero
Terminator Zero premieres August 29 on Netflix.

Premiering August 29 on Netflix, Terminator Zero takes place across two timelines, “2022: A future war has raged for decades between the few human survivors and an endless army of machines. 1997: The AI known as Skynet gained self-awareness and began its war against humanity.”

“Caught between the future and this past is a soldier (voiced by Sonoya Mizuno) sent back in time to change the fate of humanity. She arrives in 1997 to protect a scientist named Malcolm Lee (André Holland) who works to launch a new AI system (Rosario Dawson) designed to compete with Skynet’s impending attack on humanity. As Malcolm navigates the moral complexities of his creation, he is hunted by an unrelenting assassin from the future which forever alters the fate of his three children,” reads Netflix’s synopsis.

After Netflix greenlit the series from Skydance and Production IG (Ghost in the Shell) back in 2021, the streamer revealed last month that Timothy Olyphant was cast as the voice of the Terminator. Ann Dowd has also joined the cast as The Prophet, the philosophical guide for the resistance.

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