In an interview in November 2022 GQ, in which he breaks down his most iconic films, James Cameron talks about the process of signing on to write and direct Aliens. Cameron explained that many people advised him not to, but he was too interested to miss the chance. For him, the only factor that could change his mind was whether Sigourney Weaver signed the contract or not.
Cameron said: “They assured me that [Weaver] under the continue option. And so I went and wrote this thing, [like]“Okay, I’m going to work with Sigourney. It’ll be cool “. After spending six months writing the script, Cameron returned to find that it was not, in fact, true. In fact, Weaver wasn’t even offered to return for a sequel. Cameron continued: “So now it’s up to me to put Sigourney in, talk her into doing this movie. I can’t tell her from a stranger on the street. So I call her and send the script and she agrees to meet with me.”
The director then admitted that he was a bit nervous about meeting Weaver because he wasn’t sure what she would think of all the prep work he had done for the sequel. But in the end, Weaver really liked the story and wanted to make a movie. But after problems with Weaver’s salary negotiations, it seemed that he would not be able to hire Weaver after all. So Cameron threatened to rewrite the script without Weaver’s character, and the bluff eventually led to a deal. Cameron concluded, “So it worked, Sigourney got her million dollars and everyone was happy.”
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