The "T-1000", played by Robert Patrick.
|First appearance||Terminator 2: Judgment Day|
|Created by||James Cameron & William Wisher Jr.|
|Portrayed by||Robert Patrick, Rebecca Shoichet, Dee Bradley Baker, Frank Welker, Brian Drummond, other cast members, ILM special effects team|
The T-1000 is a fictional robotic assassin and the primary antagonist in Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Created by the series main antagonist Skynet, the T-1000 is a shapeshifter whose body is composed of a mimetic poly-alloy (liquid metal) that allows it to assume the form of other objects or people of equal mass.
The T-1000 is portrayed primarily by Robert Patrick; however, being a shapeshifter, the T-1000 is played by other actors in some scenes of the film. In Terminator 2, the T-1000 is presented as a technological leap over the "800 Series" Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger). Described by Allmovie as "one of the most memorable roles in one of the most memorable films of the decade", Patrick's portrayal of the T-1000 earned him nominations for Best Villain and Best Supporting Actor at the 1992 MTV and Saturn Awards and was ranked #39 in the Online Film Critics Society's "Top 100 Villains of All Time" in 2002, and #29 on Wizard magazine's "Top 100 Greatest Villains Ever" list.
In the Terminator 2 storyline, the T-1000 is made of "liquid metal". Schwarzenegger's character explains that the T-1000 is a more advanced Terminator, composed entirely of a mimetic metal alloy, rendering it capable of rapid shapeshifting, near-perfect mimicry and rapid recovery from damage. Furthermore, it can use its ability to quickly liquify and assume forms in innovative and surprising ways, including fitting through narrow openings, morphing its arms into solid metal tools or bladed weapons, walking through prison bars, and flattening itself on the ground to hide or ambush targets. The T-1000 also had the ability to extrude small, simple items from itself. For example, it created a motorcycle helmet and a pair of sunglasses when these items were necessary for its disguise (the motorcycle cop disguise is used for the T-1000 action figure). The T-1000 can also change its color and texture to simulate flesh, clothing, and other nonmetallic materials. It is capable of accurately mimicking voices as well, including the ability to extrapolate a relatively small voice sample to generate any words or inflections it requires. However, its morphing abilities were limited by complexity or mass. For this reason the T-1000 could not transform into complex machines like guns or bombs, and was forced to hollow itself out when impersonating large men.
Like all Terminators, the T-1000 possesses superhuman strength. While relatively equal in strength to the T-800, thanks to its morphing abilities, is shown to be capable of overpowering the T-800 in hand to hand combat, despite its more slender frame and lack of mass compared to its predecessor. It could also run fast enough to catch up to a speeding police car, although at times it would drive vehicles if it required further speed.
The T-1000 is effectively impervious to mechanical damage, such as being dismembered, shot with bullets, or attacked with explosive devices. Wounds close almost immediately, and any detached parts simply flow back into the T-1000's body. In T:2, this Terminator was even frozen using liquid nitrogen and shattered, but the pieces simply flowed back together after thawing. Temperature-based attacks are effective, but temporary. Low temperatures can cause the liquid metal to freeze, which inhibits its ability to move or shapeshift. High temperatures degrade its ability to maintain a disguise; after emerging from a burning truck, the T-1000 appeared in its default liquid-metal state and was only able to reestablish its policeman disguise after cooling for several seconds. Only extremely high temperatures, such as molten steel used in the finale of T:2, are capable of disassociating its molecular structure and permanently destroying it.
The Special Edition DVD release contains additional scenes in the steel foundry showing that the effects of being frozen and shattered caused the T-1000 to glitch, causing its extremities to morph and match into its surroundings against the T-1000's will (such as its hand latching on and taking on the metallic texture and caution striping of a guardrail). In the Special Edition, this glitch is what enabled John Connor to see through its ruse when it impersonated his mother. The DVD also contains a Deleted Scene where the T-1000 uses its hands to "scan" John Connor's bedroom for genetic and psychological information, including DNA, an ability it may have in common with the T-X.
The T-1000 and T-1001 often attempt to accomplish their goals by subterfuge instead of brute force. For example, in Terminator 2, it disguises itself as a police officer to gain trust, access information, and provide a benign appearance. It also imitates family members of its human target to gain that person's confidence. In fact, the T-1000 is able to pass as human, possessing a larger repertoire of emotional expression and interpersonal skills than earlier Terminator models. In one scene in Terminator 2, disguised as a police officer, it holds a conversation with John Connor's foster parents in an attempt to learn Connor's location. It is also capable of exploiting the emotions of its targets, as in the steel foundry when it tortured Sarah Connor to call out for her son, anticipating that she would respond accordingly. In addition, it is able to express fear or pain, demonstrated when the T-1000 gives a brief look of shock after the T-800 shoots a grenade into its stomach, and when it writhes in agony after falling into a vat of molten metal. Occasionally it showed hints of sadism, such as when it killed John's foster father for interrupting its conversation, then killing John's dog because it was barking at him (although this can be attributed to the fact that dogs were more adept at identifying Terminators than humans, and this played a role in John and the T-800 realising the T-1000 was impersonating John's foster mother when the T-1000 could not identify the dog's name correctly).
In Terminator 2: Judgment Day, the T-1000 is sent by Skynet back in time to kill a young John Connor (Edward Furlong), the future leader of the Human Resistance against the machines. The T-1000 ambushes a Los Angeles Police Department police officer on arrival and takes on his identity, tracking down John Connor through the police cruiser's on-board computer and eventually confronting him in a shopping mall, where it meets a T-800 Model 101 like the one from the first Terminator film. The audience is misdirected up to this point. In the first film, two men appear from the future, a Terminator sent by Skynet, and a human protector sent by the Resistance. In the second film, two men appear from the future, a Terminator T-800 model like the one from the first film, and a second man. The audience is initially left to assume that the second man is the new human protector sent by the Resistance. But when the two men finally meet, there is a plot twist, and the second man is also a Terminator. Schwarzenegger's Terminator - the same model as the one which was the assassin in the first film - is the new protector sent by the Resistance, while Patrick's Terminator is the new Terminator sent by Skynet, a reversal of the roles from the first Terminator film.
The T-1000 confronts the protagonists at the psychiatric institution where Sarah Connor is being held, demonstrating impressive abilities, such as flattening itself into a thin 'carpet' of metal or oozing through prison-style bars while maintaining the shape of a walking man. It then predicts that the Connors will try to prevent Skynet from being invented, and confronts them at Cyberdyne Systems Corporation headquarters. It hijacks a helicopter and gives chase. While flying, it sprouts two more hands, two to fly the helicopter and two to reload and fire the MP5K submachine gun. The chase ends when it crashes a liquid nitrogen truck into a steel mill.
When it exits the wrecked truck, the T-1000 is frozen solid by liquid nitrogen spilling from the truck's ruptured tank. The T-800 shatters the T-1000 with a gunshot, but the high temperatures inside the mill soon melt the fragments and the T-1000 reforms itself. After a short hunt, it tracks down John, who is confronted by two seemingly identical versions of his mother – one of which is the T-1000 in disguise. Finally, The T-800 fires a grenade at the T-1000, causing enough damage to disrupt it significantly. Although it attempts to reform itself, it stumbles and falls backwards into a vat of molten steel, and the T-1000, unable to stand the 1800 degrees of extremely high temperature of the steel corrupting its alloy and design, screams before finally being dissolved away into the molten steel.
Despite failing to eliminate John Connor, it is later revealed in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines that the T-1000 "inadvertently interfered" with the development of his relationships with Kate Brewster (Claire Danes/Bryce Dallas Howard), whom he attended school with, and her father, Robert (David Andrews), who was the true creator of Skynet by using Cyberdyne Systems' research.
McG, the director of Terminator Salvation, said that the T-1000 will be reintroduced in the fifth film: "I like the idea and the perspective for the next picture that you meet Robert Patrick the way he looks today, and he's a scientist that's working on, you know, improving cell replication so we can stay healthier and we can cure diabetes and do all these things that sound like good ideas, and to once again live as idealized expressions as ourselves." He also said the origin story they had in mind for the T-1000 would satirize the world's "obsession" with youth and aging. However, due to the bankruptcy of the Halcyon Company, and Pacificor's purchase of the Terminator rights and talks with Lionsgate and Sony for Terminator 5, it is unknown if this will be the story that is used.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
A T-1001 Terminator, a second liquid metal prototype, is introduced in the 2008 television series, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles at the start of the show's second season (though sometimes misidentified as a T-1000 by reviewers). It masquerades as Catherine Weaver (Shirley Manson), the co-founder and current CEO of ZeiraCorp. "Weaver" often has mixed results when socially interacting both with subordinates at ZeiraCorp and Weaver's daughter Savannah (portrayed by Mackenzie Smith), but was written with an improved ability to adapt to and sustain itself in changing situations more adeptly than prior Terminators. However, it has been unable to make convincing smiles or relate to people, despite being more advanced than the T-1000, which seemed to be better at social interaction. Although, she was able to successfully lead a company and use literary allegories.
The T-1001's mission remains unclear throughout the television series, but diverts from the single-minded attempts to assassinate the Connors, as seen in the prior films. Through most of the TV series, the T-1001, as well as Sarah Connor and her allies, did not appear to be aware of each other's existence. As the head of ZeiraCorp, the T-1001 diverts that company's resources into developing an artificial intelligence, titled 'Project Babylon' which appeared sufficient to combat Skynet's development. Catherine Weaver is first seen in the second season opener when she purchases the late Andy Goode's Turk computer system for $300,000 from an associate and then introduces this new computer system to her department heads to reveal her plans to create a new artificial intelligence computer system. Towards this end, Catherine Weaver recruits FBI Special Agent James Ellison to find and capture a Terminator in order to reverse engineer it using a variety of deceptions. Until the end of the series, Ellison is never aware of Weaver's true nature. Ellison delivers a T-888 Terminator's body to Weaver after it was critically damaged by Connor's Terminator bodyguard. The T-1001 advocates learning more about the 'robots' ironically in order to prevent Judgment Day. With Ellison's initial mission complete, it assigns him to act as tutor/mentor to the nascent AI now connected to the T-888's body, which Weaver nicknames "John Henry".
John Henry quickly identifies Weaver as a machine, albeit different from itself, but obeys Weaver's instruction not to share that information with anyone, assuring him that everything done at ZeiraCorp is for John Henry's benefit. At one point, Weaver reveals a clue to the nature of its mission when it tells Ellison that Savannah's future safety is dependent upon John Henry, but that the reverse is not the case. This appears to be in contradiction to assumption that Weaver was coordinating the efforts to develop Skynet to eradicate humanity.
In the TV series, the true nature of the T-1001's entire mission is never revealed, and much of what Weaver does in furtherance of it seems contradictory. In one of the episodes that shifts between the present day and post-Judgment Day, it is learned that leader of the resistance, John Connor, asked a liquid metal Terminator to join him, and the Terminator refused. In the series finale, by way of introduction, the T-1001 asks (using the same phrase) the same of Connor (and his bodyguard Cameron, who was privy to the aforementioned events in the future) through Ellison, sent as intermediary.
Also in the season/series finale, when Sarah Connor and John Connor finally meet Catherine Weaver face-to-face at her office, Ellison, Sarah, and John all discover Weaver's true nature when she uses her Terminator liquid metal abilities to form a shield to protect them from a flying Kaliba Corp drone which crash-dives into the ZeiraCorp building. When Sarah Connor discovers that ZeiraCorp possesses Andy Goode's Turk, she assumes that Weaver is constructing Skynet but Weaver corrects her by stating that she is "building something to fight it." Upon entering the basement, the four discover that John Henry has transported himself to the future with Cameron's chip, leaving Cameron's empty body. When Ellison and Sarah Connor decline to jump forward in time with Weaver and John Connor, Weaver instructs Ellison to pick up Savannah from gymnastics.
Weaver then transports itself and John Connor to a post-Judgment Day future in which John Connor is not known to the human resistance. Though Connor and the T-1001 arrived naked, the T-1001 forms "clothing" a moment later. After briefly talking to John, the Terminator slips away when the human resistance encounters John, thus leaving its whereabouts unknown.
In the Terminator 2: Judgment Day – Nuclear Twilight comic published by Malibu Comics in 1996, an injured Tech-Com soldier named "Griff" is abducted by a troop of T-800 Terminators and brought back to Skynet. He is drugged and, while in a delirious state (believing he has died and gone to Heaven), questioned by Skynet about Tech-Com's acquisition of a T-800 unit. After he has supplied all the information he is aware of, two T-1000 Terminators enter the room, both assuming his appearance before killing him. One of these T-1000 units is then sent to infiltrate the human resistance, the other sent through time to kill John Connor as outlined in the Terminator 2 movie. In the simultaneously published Terminator 2: Judgment Day – Cybernetic Dawn, set just after the film, a female T-1000 and two T-800s come to the present to make sure the creation of Skynet happens as planned.
Teaser trailers for Terminator 2 deliberately withheld the notion that the T-1000 character was the villain. A tagline for the film was "This time there are two. Terminator 2."
Writer/director James Cameron stated that his original intention for the sequel was that both Terminators sent to the past would be T-800s like the one played by Arnold Schwarzenegger, with one being stripped down to a metal endoskeleton like the one from the original film. Once Cameron actually started working on the script, in 1990, he figured a better way was to turn the evil Terminator into a more advanced model.
Cameron's original pick to play the T-1000 was rock musician Billy Idol, and storyboards had the robot resembling him, but a serious motorcycle accident prevented Idol from accepting the role. Then, he thought of casting actor Michael Biehn, who played Kyle Reese in The Terminator, in the role with the explanation that Skynet managed to clone Reese's body and use it for a new Terminator. Cameron ultimately dropped this idea after deciding the audience would find it too confusing.
Eventually casting came down to Robert Patrick, as a deliberate contrast to the original Terminator: "I wanted to find someone who would be a good contrast to Arnold. If the 800 series is a kind of human Panzer tank, then the 1000 series had to be a Porsche." For a more machine-like performance, Patrick had to learn how to both fire a gun without flinching and run effortlessly.
The development of computer-generated imagery (CGI) by Industrial Light & Magic to manipulate, re-create, and "morph" the image of an actor was used in the creation of the T-1000 character in the film. The computer graphics composed 6 of the 15 minutes that the T-1000 displays its morphing and healing abilities. The other 9 were achieved in camera with the use of advanced puppets and prosthetic effects created by Stan Winston and his team, who were also responsible for the metal skeleton effects of the T-800. The visual effects used in Terminator 2 to create the T-1000 won the Academy Award for Visual Effects.
Entity FX, Inc. is responsible for the visual effects of the T-1001 on Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, along with the digital animation of endoskeletons, Hunter-Killers, and the future war sequences on the second season of the show. The company also contributed the digital imagery of feature films James Cameron's True Lies and Titanic.
- Trailer of Terminator 2 has the Schwarzenegger character identified as 800 Series Model 101"
- Robert Patrick, All Movie Guide biography at The New York Times
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- Terminator 2: Judgment Day by Randall Frakes, James Cameron and William Wisher (Jun 1, 1991)
- In Terminator 2, examples of the T-1000's emotional expression include the following; it spares a brief moment of bemusement after seeing a clothing store mannequin that resembles its liquid metal form, it looks shocked when its arm breaks off due to being frozen with liquid nitrogen, displays frustration and anger towards the Model 101 when it thwarts its attempt to force Sarah to call John out of hiding, wags its finger in a "tsk-tsk" gesture at Sarah after she fails to destroy it in the steel mill, exhibits a shocked expression after being significantly disrupted by a grenade, and shows genuine agony when it is freezing and when it is dropped into the molten steel.
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- The Winston Effect: The Art & History of Stan Winston Studio
- "Academy Awards Database". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 2007-07-14.
- Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles End Credits
- Entity Fx
- T-1000 at the Internet Movie Database
- Catherine Weaver at the Internet Movie Database
- Robert Patrick at the Internet Movie Database