“We should’ve had Arnold in the movie”: Iconic $741M Franchise Doomed itself by Kicking Out Arnold Schwarzenegger Over a Paltry $250,000

Arnold Schwarzenegger walked away from the 'Predator' franchise over salary issues and went on to bash the sequels.

"We should've had Arnold in the movie": Iconic $741M Franchise Doomed itself by Kicking Out Arnold Schwarzenegger Over a Paltry $250,000


  • Arnold Schwarzenegger starred in the classic action, sci-fi film 'Predator' in 1987, but didn't return for its sequels.
  • Producer John Davis revealed that Schwarzenegger was supposed to return to the sequels, but negotiations broke down over a mere sum of $250,000.
  • While the franchise has gained a newfound respect with its latest film, 'Prey', losing Schwarzenegger was a big blow to the franchise.
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Arnold Schwarzenegger joined Predator as Major Alan “Dutch” Schaefer only after making changes to parts of the script that bothered him. However, when it came to the second film, the money bothered him more than the creative, so much so that he turned down the role. Producer John Davis later revealed that the negotiation with The Terminator actor fell apart over a mere amount of $250,000.

Carl Weathers and Arnold Schwarzenegger in a still from Predator
Carl Weathers and Arnold Schwarzenegger in a still from Predator

Schwarzenegger later criticized the Predator movies that followed the original 1987 film. None of the movies seemed to interest the FUBAR actor up until Predators in 2010. However, his opinion about the highly acclaimed 2022 film, Prey, remains unknown.

Predator 2 Lost Arnold Schwarzenegger Over A Mere $250,000

Arnold Schwarzenegger in Predator
Arnold Schwarzenegger as Major Alan “Dutch” Schaefer in Predator

Predator starring Arnold Schwarzenegger has become one of the classic films in the action and sci-fi genres. The film, made on a $15 million budget, went on to gross $98.3 million and further solidified Schwarzenegger’s status as an A-list action star in Hollywood. However, Predator 2 was a disappointment for many, as a new cast including Danny Glover, Gary Busey, and Ruben Blades replaced Schwarzenegger in the film.


While the film has a cult following now, the Escape Plan actor’s absence was definitely felt as the box office earnings dropped to $57.1 million. In 2011, the producer of the films, John Davis, shared what happened with the Austrian Oak during the pre-production of the second film. In an interview with Collider, Davis explained that the decision to reboot the franchise in Predator 2 was due to Schwarzenegger walking out.

Davis shared that The Running Man actor was supposed to be in the movie, but couldn’t agree to the role as the salary offered to him was short of $250,000 from what he expected. It is safe to say that the broken deal affected the franchise more than it affected Schwarzenegger’s career. Davis shared with Collider:

“The sequel to the first one rebooted it. We should’ve had Arnold in the movie. The deal broke down over $250,000, which is a shame.”

Predator 2 was followed by the crossover films, Alien vs. Predator and Aliens vs. Predator: Requiem. A third film in the Predator franchise was released in 2010, Predators, starring Adrien Brody and Topher Grace. The fourth film, The Predator, was set between the events of Predator 2 and Predators and was released in 2018. Prey received a streaming release on Hulu in 2022 and was considered one of the best movies in the franchise after the original Predator film.


Arnold Schwarzenegger Was Not Impressed By The Predator Sequels

Arnold Schwarzenegger hated the Predator sequels, including Predator 2
Arnold Schwarzenegger hated the Predator sequels, including Predator 2

During a 2015 Q&A session after the preview screening of Terminator Genisys, Arnold Schwarzenegger ironically bashed the Predator franchise for coming up with subpar sequels. The Twins actor blamed the higher-ups at the studios for ruining the sequels and he went on to criticize the studio for their greed. Schwarzenegger shared at the Q&A session (via The Hollywood Reporter):

“The sad story is that sometimes studios do a great job with creating sequels, and sometimes they really screw it up bad, and it all has to do with greed. You know, they sometimes want to do it really cheap and make as much money as possible, so they don’t hire the right cast or not the right director. … It’s stupid moves to make.”

He added that the Predator sequels, Predator 2 and Predators, were not satisfactory to the audiences. Schwarzenegger shared, “So far, no ‘Predator,’ no matter which one they did after the first one has come out, has been satisfactory to the audience.” The irony of the matter is that both critics and audiences were not at all impressed by Terminator Genisys. While it was a commercially successful film, it is largely a forgettable venture considering all the hype surrounding it.

Predator and Predator 2 are now available for streaming on Hulu and Disney+. Predators is available for streaming on Max and The Predator is available for streaming on FX Now. Terminator Genisys is now available for streaming on Prime Video.


Written by Hashim Asraff

Articles Published: 1237

Hashim, Entertainment Writer. With over 1000 published articles on FandomWire, he covers a wide range of topics from celebrity life to comic book movies. He holds a Masters degree in Sociology and his expertise proves invaluable in handling sensitive news. His passion for crime investigation thrillers has turned him into a detective, exploring the darkest corners of the internet during his research.