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The Time Guardian (1987) Poster

Trivia

This film is considered an "Ozploitation" (Australian exploitation) picture.
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John Baxter and Brian Hannant's original script was called 'Time Wars'. Originally the city in a bubble was to be pursued by just one evil robot. However, producer John Daly of Hemdale Films insisted that there had to be hordes of robots to be featured in several battles. According to Hannant, these late revisions to the script combined with the lack of extra budget led to the failure of the picture.
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The Time Guardian (1987) was the flagship in a ten picture deal set up with the Hemdale Film Corporation by producer Antony I. Ginnane. But when Hemdale pulled out of the production, the other nine pictures ended up being suspended indefinitely and going into turnaround.
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Final film [to date, January 2015] of writer-director Brian Hannant.
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Second and final film directed by Brian Hannant and his third and final feature film as a screenwriter. Hannant's first film as director was Flashpoint (1972) in 1972. He was the screenwriter of Flashpoint (1972) and the co-screenwriter of Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) in 1981.
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Brian Hannant had been drawn to the rock formation at Wilpena Point in South Australia while making Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981). This inspired him to write a script with John Baxter in the early 1980s. According to Baxter, the script was originally called "Time Rider", about a geologist who, while investigating magnetic anomalies around Wilpena, South Australia, encourages a man from the future, who is a scout sent back in time to find a home for his people, pursued by the Jen-Diki tribe.
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The movie has been said to have been a knock-off of The Terminator (1984).
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The name of the tribe of part-human part-cyborg machine race was "The Jen-Diki".
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American actress Carrie Fisher was cast in the picture in the lead female role after her world-wide success in the three "Star Wars" movies to that time, Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977), Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) and Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983). The Time Guardian (1987) was made and released about four years after the latter. The word "Jedi" associated with the "Star Wars" series has a similarity in sound to the "Jen-Diki" of The Time Guardian (1987).
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The year that this science-fiction motion picture is set is 4039.
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According to Tony Ayres in the book 'Australian Film 1978-1994' edited by Scott Murray, the movie was "Australia's first attempt at high-technology science fiction".
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The name of the global nuclear destruction battles that occurred during the 24th Century was "The Neutron Wars".
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The film was originally entitled in the script "Time Wars". In the revival of the long-running BBC science fiction series "Doctor Who", the main protagonist The Doctor and his race The Time Lords fought the evil Dalek robots in a "Time War". This film is about humans battling evil robots, whilst living in a city that has the ability to travel across space and time.
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Australian actor Tom Burlinson landed the top-billed male lead role after his earlier successful 1980s star turns in such Aussie movies as Windrider (1986), Phar Lap (1983) and The Man from Snowy River (1982).
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Petra is played by Carrie Fisher. Fisher is most famous for playing Princess Leia in George Lucas' "Star Wars" saga with this picture also being a science-fiction film.
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The movie imported two American actors to appear in the picture, Carrie Fisher and Dean Stockwell. Fisher (Petra) previously starred in the "Star Wars" trilogy as Princess Leia and Stockwell (Boss) previously starred in Dune (1984) as Dr. Wellington Yueh. Later, Stockwell would go on to star as the hologram Al in the time-travel series Quantum Leap (1989).
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The other 1987 released theatrical feature film that "Star Wars" actress Carrie Fisher appeared in as well as The Time Guardian (1987) also had a science-fiction title with that being Amazon Women on the Moon (1987). Moreover, the original script title of The Time Guardian (1987) was "Time Wars" a title similar to "Star Wars".
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Tony Ayres in the book 'Australian Film 1978-1994', edited by Scott Murray, states that "the film was recut and partially reshot after Brian Hannant left the film. He disowns much of what is left"
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The film's opening prologue states: "By the year 4039 Earth was a scarred and desolate battlefield. Hoards of armored robots created by man in the previous century, were sweeping the planet, brutally destroying everything in their path and threatening mankind with extinctions. One city attempted to escape their onslaught by unraveling the secrets of time and traveling back in a desperate search for a safer age . . . . they succeeded and time was their friend until the arrival yet again of their relentless enemy".
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Scott Glenn was considered for the lead role of Ballard which in the end was cast with Tom Burlinson.
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Principal photography on this picture was cut down from a production shoot of thirteen weeks down to filming for a period of just nine weeks.
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The comic book Sargeant MacCarthy is seen reading is "The Phantom".
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When Annie asks Petra about Ballard, Petra mentions that before he became a soldier, Ballard had been a Feral kid raised by nomads. An obvious nod to "Mad Max 2" which Brian Hannant was co-writer. The main protagonist Mad, a drifter befriends a boy called The Feral Kids.
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The film the mechanic is watching on TV just before the mechanic and his dog are killed by the Jen-Diki is "The Terminator".
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6 years later, Carrie Fisher's "Star Wars" co-star Mark Hamill would star in another low-budget time travel film which was also an rip-off of "The Terminator". 1993's "Time Runner", which he stars a space fighter pilot who travels back through time to prevent an alien invasion, when the Earth is attacked by alien invaders and change the future.
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Ballard quotes Arnold Schwarzenegger's signature line "I'll be Back!" in the final battle sequence. Schwarzenegger first said "I'll be Back!" in "The Terminator", which he later used again in his other later films.
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