Read Me Now and Understand Me Later: The 9 Most Interesting Answers From Arnold Schwarzenegger's AMA
The Governator’s trip to reddit isn’t to promote a movie. It’s to raise money, through donations and Schwarzenegger’s matching contributions, and awareness for After-School All-Stars. Anyone who donates money can enter to win a trip to LA to hang out with Schwarzenegger and ride in a tank.
1. I remember hearing that James Cameron did not originally want you for the role of the terminator. But then you guys went for lunch and he changed his mind. If this is true what did you say or do to convince him you were right for the role? Huge fan by the way!
Ahnald: Actually, the story is a little different. I wanted the role of Kyle Reese when we went to lunch. I did not want to be the Terminator. I didn’t think I had established myself yet enough as a hero to be a villain. When I started in Hollywood, all they offered was villains. So I wanted to really establish myself first.
But I told Jim some of my ideas about how the Terminator should train (not looking while loading weapons, not blinking, no emotions. I said the guy had to train blindfolded.) The Terminator, by the way, at that time, was O.J. Simpson.
Jim told me I had to do it. He was right.
2. What is nearest you have ever been to death?
Ahnald: I have two from movies.
On The 6th Day, there was a scene where I hide underwater behind embryos. I did a rehearsal with goggles and everything went fine. But when we actually shot, I couldn’t see because the water was milky. So I ran out of air and went to the top and realized I didn’t know where to get out. I was trapped. Then a hand grabbed me and pulled me out. It was my stunt double, Billy Lucas. He’d been watching from below with a tank and goggles and realized I was in big, big trouble.
On True Lies, you probably remember the horse scene. There was a shot where the horse had to stop at the edge of a building. They built a little ramp to give the horse longer to stop. But when they were measuring the new distance from the ramp to the camera, they dropped the arm of the camera on the horse’s nose, and it went crazy, spinning and rearing. There was no rail, and the ramp was only 4 feet wide. I realized it was a bad situation and I slid off the horse right away and a stunt man grabbed me. That one was really scary. If the horse stepped a foot the wrong way, we would have fallen 90 feet to a cement floor.
These stories are why I will always love stunt people.
3. Of all the things you are famous for, which are you most proud of? Which are you least proud of?
Ahnald: I’m most proud that I was smart enough to immigrate to the greatest country in the world where I could accomplish all of my dreams.
I’m least proud of the mistakes I made that caused my family pain and split us up.
4. You’re Conan the barbarian, Mr. Olympia, the fucking Terminator. But I want to know: what is the most feminine part of you?
Ahnald: Besides Junior? I like to paint. I paint all of my Christmas cards.
I also drew a cat for my Reddit secret santa, but I can’t find the link quickly. (A redditor found the picture.)
5. Please… please record yourself saying “Come with me if you want to lift” I swear I will spend my last Dogecoins on donating to your cause
6. Did the Predator ever make you shit yourself? It did for me when I was younger
Ahnald: Not because of the predator. But during the shooting of the movie, I got really sick in Puerto Vallerta.
I will spare you the details, but while I was on a run, the runs hit. I ran to the side of the road and some cars driving by got quite the show.
7. I know this will probably be buried… My grandmother is a HUGE fan of you. She lives in Venezuela and due to the situation with the government there, doesn’t get a chance to come visit often. But when she does all she wants to do is stay at home watching your movies. She doesn’t speak English, so whenever I ask her what she’s watching, she just looks at me and says “Arnold”. When I ask her what’s going on in the movie she simply responds with “Arnold is kicking some guys ass”. She absolutely loves you and her birthday is coming up soon. I wanted to ask you if you could just simply write on a piece of paper “Feliz Cumpleaños Anriett Merjech” and take a picture. It would mean the absolute world to me and to my grandmother! She’s getting old and I really know she would appreciate it. You have no idea what this would mean for her!! I hope you get to see this, if not, then I just wanted to thank you for all the laughs, gasps, and hilarious cursing I have been able to share with her through your movies.
Ahnald: Here you go. Tell her thanks for being a fan!
8. Did Andre the Giant really pick you up and carry you back to a table when you tried to pick up the cheque?
Ahnald: Yes, he picked me up. But he set me on a car outside.
9. So, you’re a big guy and an action movie star, but when was the last time you were in an actual physical confrontation? Not that you would promote violence or anything, but shit happens, right? Did you win the fight?
Ahnald: A few months ago, I got rear-ended by this guy. He took off, and I chased him. I will admit I drove at a slightly excessive speed. I cut him off, and two guys jumped out of the car looking tough. But when they saw me, they just said, “Oh shit! The terminator!” They were nice, and gave me their information.