back to article Christian Bale signs for Terminator trilogy

Christian Bale, who's already strutting his stuff before the cameras for Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins, will play John Connor in a further two cinematic outings for the Skynet versus humanity saga. The fourth Terminator film - the first of planned trilogy which will "reinvent" the franchise - is currently shooting at …


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  1. Iain
    IT Angle

    Original idea?

    Where is the original idea angle?

  2. Ash
    Thumb Up

    Christian Bale

    Good choice. Very dedicated.

    Compare him in American Psycho and The Machinist.

  3. DirkGently


    Arnie won't be back!

  4. Giles Jones Gold badge


    We've had 3 films in the past/present. Look forward to 3 films set in the future battle against the machines.

    Christian Bale is a good choice. But seems odd that three actors will have now played John Connor.

  5. The BigYin
    Thumb Down

    It won't die!

    Shoot it again! Shoot it again!

    (The movie franchise, not Bale)

  6. Mark Ireland-Spicer

    Is it just me....

    or is this a little bit sad. The first movie was a bit low budget but absolutely f**king brilliant!! Possibly one of my favourite movies of all time.

    The following ones were OK, if you ignored the primary inconsistency of the statement made that the humans destroyed the time machine after Reece passes through, so how did these increasing complex terminators and Arnie's now good terminator(s) come through?!!

    So instead of sitting back and saying 'well we did alright with all that' they are re-inventing the story lines to suit a whole new bunch of films. Added to which they are giving the helm to the guy who did Charlies Angels - which has to rate as one of my least favourite movies - I can't help thinking that they will end up with a kind of extended Duke Nuke 'Em style destructo-fest in place of a plot, characters or any relavence/relationship to the first film.

    I think I'll be voting with my feet on these new films and waiting until they come on to the free small screen!!

  7. Keith Williams
    Paris Hilton

    @Original Idea

    You expect Hoorywood to have an original idea?

    Paris, because she's short on original ideas too

  8. eddiewrenn

    It was going so well untill..

    I read McG. He's butchered a couple of films. But Christian Bale is a big +.

  9. Paul Talbot


    Should be good in the long run but the lineup worries me... Bale? Fine, great actor and usually doesn't take up bad scripts. McG. Mc f***ing G? Either the end product will be surprisingly good, else we'll all be praying for Ratner.

  10. StopthePropaganda

    Hollywood ran out of original ideas long ago

    now it's just remakes and anti-American propaganda films disguised as social commentary. Plus a few vanity pieces to glorify criminals, gangsters or political allies.

    Say all you want about McCarthy, but a good housecleaning of Hollywood might be whats needed to allow fresh blood and fresh ideas into the stagnant moral cesspool of southern California entertainment.

  11. Rog69
    IT Angle

    Lunch boxes and toys.

    I was looking forward to this new trilogy but I've lost interest since I read on the Variety website that the producers are aiming for a PG13 rating so that they can sell the related merchandise to a wider market.

    I half expect it to be one big toy advert now.

  12. Pooper Scooper
    Thumb Down



  13. Wonderkid
    Black Helicopters

    The way Britain is headed...

    ...the premise behind Terminator may become a reality, with the robots replaced by our surveilance state. Ironic that Britain had a network called Skynet before the franchise ever existed! Did Cameron know something we didn't back then? Sad thing is, in reality, unlike the movies, a tough handsome bullet proof hero never arrives. We're screwed unless someone takes a stand. Where's Superman when you need him?

  14. XML slave


    It's no wonder Batma--err, John Connor, is the guy who can reunite the people in a war against the machines. A caped crusa--I mean guerilla trained fighter would indeed be a formidable opponent. I wonder if they'll cast a good ornithologically corre--woops, military brat--sidekick as his accomplice.

    Yeah I know, get my coat and get the hell out.

  15. Nexox Enigma


    This should be pretty awesome, and I'm not just saying that because I have a giant man-crush on Christian Bale. Now to watch that newest Batman flick a couple times in a row...

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Could be good if they don't just rehash the Terminator scripts in a futuristic setting

    Great choice of actor and the fact that he chose to stay with the project for a further two films gives me confidence in the scripts.

    Despite people generally being sceptical about yet another Terminator film (or three) I think there is potential material and original ideas to justify it. The Terminator films so far have focused on events prior to 'judgement day' in a world before a nuclear holocaust and before most people knew of the 'enemy'. The scene for the new films is entirely different, all out war in an apocalyptic future with a cast of hundreds.

    The futuristic all-out war has been done once, in "Starship Troopers", maybe twice if you count "The War of the Worlds" (both versions). However it's not been done to death, I could watch another WW2 film and there are hundreds of those, it comes down to the story within that setting.

    If the story writers are wise they won't make the entire war boil down to the actions of a few, but rather make them participants in a much larger series of events. Think Saving Private Ryan instead of the Dirty Dozen or Rambo. If they just make it about John Connor and a rag-tag bunch of misfits fighting the machines alone, without a greater context, then it's going to be crap IMHO.

  17. Brad

    I have a problem with Bale...

    He'll always be Patrick Bateman to me.

  18. John

    Must have

    lots of fighting robot tanks and hunter killers in the mix. The teasers in T1 and T2 were awesome but left me wanting. I had hopes for Fox's Terminator, but it turned up lame and ploddy. GIVE ME BATTLING ROBOT ARMIES!!!!

    Mines the one with the kevlar lining...

  19. Jon Tocker

    Christian Bale again

    Yes, good choice of actor but other things I've heard bandied about re the movie gives me the screaming shits: PG rating?!?!?!

  20. Faceless Man

    Re: Original Idea

    I think the original idea is to rip off Philip K. Dick without crediting him.

    No, wait, that was Cameron's original idea.

  21. Jason


    Don't forget Equilibrium, one of his best movies IMO.

    IT Angle = Terminator => ROTM

  22. Graham Marsden

    They've already tried...

    ... to reinvent the story with the Sarah Connor Chronicles (broadcast recently on Virgin Channel).

    Apparently (although the first series only got 13 episodes) it's just been renewed for another 13.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not overly thrilled

    I think they should have just left it at 2. 3 really bugged me. Besides, I remember hearing they're going to cast John Cena (the WWE wrestler) as the main Terminator.

  24. Anonymous Coward

    Should have made films of the Infiltrator novels

    The T2:Infiltrator novels would have made great films, but they relied on having the original characters from T2 available.

    Some of the ideas leaked into the later film & tv scripts, but never in a satisfactory form.

    The novels managed to work alternative terminators, the various ongoing paradoxes, the changing futures, the closed loops and Judgement Day/the future war into one effective whole. Plus they managed to tie everything together neatly.

    But It's never going to happen. Especially without Arnie to take on the necessary part in the story.

    But in any case I can recommend the books, I found them by accident and they were surprisingly good.

  25. Anonymous Coward

    @ Mark Ireland-Spicer

    "the humans destroyed the time machine after Reece passes through, so how did these increasing complex terminators and Arnie's now good terminator(s) come through?"

    Parallel timelines etc. Think Back To The Future 2.

    Reese goes back, original/bad Arnie goes back -> original Arnie becomes Skynet (paradox admittedly, or just a different Skynet). Skynet in this timeline are aware that their 101 model will fail and also what will happen (retrieved from original/bad Arnie CPU). And the humans could have sent Reese through the time machine 20 years after original/bad Arnie went through, just to the same temporal destination.

    Oh dear, I've gone cross-eyed. Time travel - a wonderful tool to disrupt canon

  26. Anonymous Coward

    @ Mark Ireland-Spicer 2

    Oh, forgot. Think the point of T3 was that Skynet was inevitable regardless of how you try to rewrite the future.

    T1 - Skynet evolved naturally

    T2 - Skynet evolved from the left-overs of T1 (through Miles Dyson)

    T3 - Skynet evolved naturally

    T4/5 - Continuing one of the above timelines(?)

  27. Steve

    Stahl out?

    Bale is a great actor, but am I the only one that's going to miss Nick Stahl as John Connor? From his IMDB page, it looks like he would have been pretty easy to get...

  28. CTG

    @Giles Jones

    Erm, no. Christian Bale will be the fourth actor to portray John Connor.

    T2 Judgement Day -> Edward Furlong

    T3 Rise of the Crap -> Nick Stahl

    T:TSCC -> Thomas Dekker

    Oh god, I don't believe I just wrote that. How sad.

  29. cphi
    Black Helicopters

    neat logic

    Actually, some bits of T1 that were left on the cutting room floor show that the final battle scene was actually in a Cyberdyne factory and two employees are shown picking up *that* arm. John Connor (and Kyle Reese for that matter being born after the war) and his nemesis are all neatly folded up in a paradox.

  30. heystoopid
    Thumb Down

    Oh no !

    Oh no , we are locked in a vicious time loop as each succeeding film in the series became progressively worse , until it degenerated into an even worse utter crap TV show !

    So this time around , it will be so low in the sewer , that even floating pond scum at the stage one plant would smell like a rose in comparison !

    Where are all the mental homes with padded cells , to incarcerate the idiots writing this script when you need them ?

    Come to think of it it was the only credible scene in the second film , as everything else was so far off scale , it became a borderline dog of a comedy show , and the third one defies description of the word absolute crass in the form of audio and visual CGI pollution !

    As for the TV show it jumped the shark at episode 1 !

    Run for the hills even bigger visual crap is coming to the big screen near you , the Skynet is falling !

  31. Dr Patrick J R Harkin

    @Mark Irelan-Spicer

    "if you ignored the primary inconsistency of the statement made that the humans destroyed the time machine after Reece passes through, so how did these increasing complex terminators and Arnie's now good terminator(s) come through?!!"

    They used the time machine to go back in time to stop themselves destroying the time machine that they'd just used to go back in time to stop themselves destroying the time machine they'd just used to go back in time to stop themselves destroying the time machine they'd just used to go back in time to stop themselves destroying the time machine they'd just used to go back in time to stop themselves destroying the time machine...

  32. Darren Lovell

    @ CTG

    Christian Bale will only be the fifth actor to portray John Connor in a speaking role.

    Michael Edwards portrayed an older John Connor in a non-speaking part in T2.

  33. TrishaD
    Thumb Down

    Just Two Things

    I'm aftraid that in order to work, any Terminator movie requires two things...

    Cameron directing

    Arnie as the Terminator

    Afraid anything else is doomed to mediocrity .....

  34. MrM
    Thumb Down

    T2 still No1

    T2:Judgement Day is still my all time favourite film! I remember watching it as a kid and wishing i had my own terminator... infact i still do!

    I was really dissapointed with the 3rd installment though, went to the cinema to see it and people were actually laughing out loud at some points! Comedy? in a Terminator movie? i know T2 has some amusing lines but T3 just took the pittle.

    Regardless of where the story goes or who they cast, it just wont be the same for me without Arnie!

  35. Slaine
    Thumb Up

    Edward Furlong will always be THE John Connor

    T1 was filmed on a low budget without the benefit of CGI, produced and directed with inspiration and inventive skill rather than just chucking millions of dollars at it... a "classic" "B" movie...

    T2 was a fantastic sequel and well justified. The work done in producing T1 more than justified the extra budget and a lot was achieved with that additional funding. Good story line... consistent... true to form.

    T3 should have worked... but it lacked something. It lacked a lot of things (a sturdy plot for starters) but the one overriding point was that it closed the loop. Why oh why oh why... did HorrorWood have to stick it's overpolished nose back into the mix? Oh yeh - the T-series is an innovative and financial success... something HorrorWood have precious little experience of producing without infringing on one copyright or another.

    Come back Mr Furlong... Skynet lives and breathes within the backlots of LA... your people need you.

  36. Spleen
    Thumb Down


    These aren't going to be even worth thinking about. Forget the pedigree and forget the actors, think about the central point of the films, imagine you're the film producer hearing the elevator pitch.

    Terminator 1 was good because it was about humans in our own time battling something incomprehensible and superior from the future, but beating it despite their inferiority. A classic triumph-of-the-underdog story mixed in with sci-fi paranoia and "why won't it die" horror. In Terminator 2 the present had some future technology on its side, but as it was outdated compared to the baddie the essential does-old-mean-inferior struggle was still there. And it was still set in the present. Terminator 3 we won't mention.

    Now they're going to use the brand name to give us another stupid sci-fantasy laser fest, coming to the DVD counter of a Spar near you in two months' time. Oh look! Coloured lights! Explosions! Men and token women who despite fighting a desperate battle for the future of humanity always have time to do their hair! Mummy I want that toy! Zzzzz.

  37. Chris Walker
    Paris Hilton

    Nothing wrong with looking good

    "Men and token women who despite fighting a desperate battle for the future of humanity always have time to do their hair!"

    Tomorrow's (Yesterday's?) modern metrosexual warrior takes care and pride over his appearance, and I for one applaud them. Likewise, his token female compatriot also endeavours to mesh her needs for combat performance with delicate femininity; its why female troops wear high heels.

    Dirty wild eyed types in tatty apparel belong in Chatham, not on the battlefield.

  38. Mark
    Thumb Up

    Thank god George isnt involved

    Bale - Awesome

    McG - Oh Dear! Why Jeebus Why??

    A further 3 movies - Now they can't expect to top the first 3, but as long as there are no Jar Jar esque robots for the kids then it has potential to be pretty good!

    Lots of Killbots please.

    Give Bale his axe and Huey Lewis album and we're on to a winner!!

    Now I'm off....have to return some video tapes.

  39. michael

    re:@ Mark Ireland-Spicer

    rember there is nothing stating that the order the pepol arive in the past is the order they where sent


    skynet sends arni after sara

    skynet sends "hot chick" after john old

    skynet sends "metle man" after john yound

    humans capture time mecheen

    humans read time mecheen log files

    humand send 2 reporgrames termantors and 1 human back as gards

    humans blow up mecheen

    everyboady happy :)

  40. Alex

    @CTG & Darren

    **Ahem.. Geek alert!!**

    Actually, I think you'll find that Christian will be the 6th actor to play John Connor..

    You forgot Little John C in the playground played by Dalton Abbott (the scene where Linda H gets flambeyed!)

    *checks tie, nods to the commenters, and leaves quickly before getting his head kicked in!*

  41. Martin Glenn

    Re: By Michael

    Maybe they can send someone back to give you a spelling and grammar test too!

  42. Steven Gray


    You're a heuristic algorithm, right?

  43. Nick
    Thumb Down

    Terminator Requiem

    As much as I'm a fan of Mr. Bale's movies I can't help but think that if James Cameron's role ends up being anything short of director then this trilogy is already in serious jeopardy.

    T1 & T2 - Incredibly good fun to watch, two of my favourite films.

    T3 - Total sh*t.

    Aliens - One of my favourite films.

    Alien 3 - Why did they feature weird convict monks instead of Colonial Marines?

    Alien: Resurrection - Mental cloned Ripley with mad basketball skillz and space pirates. F*ck off.

    Titanic - Get to see Kate Winslet's norks, Leonardo DiCaprio's character dies, but film takes away three hours of your life so probably not worth it.

    The bottom line is if you want to see a decent crack at homicidal robots and nuclear armageddon you need Cameron directing, a psychotic looking Arnie, and if you can find room for Michael Biehn (Kyle Reese/ Corporal Hicks), you're definitely onto a winner.

  44. Robert Ramsay







  45. michael


    yes you caught me I am not a real person I am a bot progremed to leave coments on el reg and progremed (badley) to misspell every word

  46. Anonymous Coward

    To (misquote) Michael J Fox

    I want to *see* a movie without a Roman numeral in it's title.

  47. Lukin Brewer


    They *were* going to terminate the franchise with the second movie. They shot a happy ending scene, a duplicate of the Sarah Connor playpark armageddon nightmare scene, except that Sarah Connor was much older and the there was no nuke. Judgement Day had been averted. However, this was dropped in favour of the ambiguous "maybe we fixed it, maybe we didn't" narration that we're all familiar with, played against a close-up of moving tarmac.

    Hasta la vista, Terminator.

  48. Roger Brown
    Thumb Down

    if people are dumb enough to see this.....

    While there's money to be made from re-hashing the same old tired crap, the studios will provide it. Doesn't matter how little sense it makes or how many ideas are stolen from other pictures (almost everything after Revenge of the Jedi qualifies).....the mass audience doesn't seem to care.

    Pity that they don't put the same time and effort into something more complex and daring.....or, dare I say, original?

    I'm wondering if James Cameron is laughing at all the idiots milking a cybernetic cow, or shaking his head and walking away?

  49. Spleen

    One correction

    Christian Bale will actually be the *seventh* actor to play McConnor. In 2025 Skynet will send a robot into the past to produce a Saturday morning kids' TV show based on the Terminator franchise, in order to win an Internet argument in the future about how many actors played McConnor.

  50. Chris
    Thumb Down

    "Battle for the Planet of the Apes" anyone?

    This is what happens when a once proud franchise gets milked too much. Sort of like the goose that laid the golden egg. Each successive movie got worse and worse, and not-so coincidentally, had a smaller budget. By the time they got to the last one, they were reduced to shooting in a park, with an old school bus.

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