Terminator Salvation - A T-800 Terminator
Terminator Salvation - A T-800 Terminator © 2008 T Asset Acquisition

Set in 2018, Judgment Day has come and gone, and armies of Terminators roam the post-apocalyptic landscape, collecting Human beings and hiding them in desolate cities.

A small group of survivors have organized into a Resistance, headed by John Connor (Christian Bale), his wife Kate (Bryce Dallas Howard), Blair Williams (Moon Bloodgood), Barnes (Common) and Kyle Reese (Anton Yelchin), whom John Connor must protect in order for Kyle to go back into the Past, years later, so that John can be born.

Terminator Salvation - Common
Common © Warner Brothers

COMMON: I was a fan of the franchise. I wasn’t a fanatic to the point where I knew everything in-and-out about the Terminator.

I thought they were good movies. The first and the second one, I really enjoyed those. I went back and watched them and appreciated them.

I wasn’t the guy wearing the ‘I’ll be back” t-shirt, but I was into it. I thought they were cool.

Terminator Salvation - Anton Yelchin
Anton Yelchin © Warner Brothers

ANTON YELCHIN: I wasn’t around in ’84 when the first one came out, but I was actually a huge fan. I think I saw them way too early. I saw T-2 when it came out in ’91 or ’92.

I was four or five when I saw it and I was so into it. I was obsessed. I didn’t have a t-shirt either but I had all the action figures. I had a Terminator factory that made gelatin Terminators.

At some point I had a model that I got at Universal Citywalk. That was a big deal.

Terminator Salvation - Bryce Dallas Howard
Bryce Dallas Howard © Warner Brothers

BRYCE DALLAS HOWARD: No action figures, but I also always watched this franchise and, like Common was saying, I’m sure we all thought that this was such an incredible moment to appreciate the franchise and be a fan of it and then to know that you’re going to be a part of the next film and sit down and watch it all again.

It was a defining, awesome, exhilarating moment for sure.

Terminator Salvation - Moon Bloodgold
Moon Bloodgold © Warner Brothers

MOON BLOODGOLD: I love Sci-Fi. I like Star Trek. I’ve never been somebody that liked romantic comedies. I always wanted to see things that were about the future, movies like Bladerunner.

I liked Arnold but my favorite was always the story of John Connor and Sarah Connor; a female with those bad-ass biceps. She was so tough.

Bryce Dallas Howard © Warner Brothers

HOWARD: It’s a great moment when Christian says ‘I’ll be back’ in the movie.

Christian was so committed to making sure that the script was always being fully realized and that every single plot point was hit perfectly, and he and [director] McG together formed an incredible dynamic partnership.

Moon Bloodgold © Warner Brothers

BLOODGOOD: I had nothing but a great experience with Christian. He was light, he was warm, he was funny. All actors are intense to me in some way. How do you get there without having some kind of intensity?

It doesn’t have to be negative. He’s quite funny and he made us laugh, he’s just very focused.

Bryce Dallas Howard © Warner BrothersHOWARD: I understand the word intense, but I’ve thought a little bit about it and intense usually implies intimidation and Christian’s not an intimidating guy.

He’s just incredibly focused, methodical and dedicated. He reminds me of my grandfather actually. He’s just a very grounded and genuine gentleman.

Common © Warner BrothersCOMMON: To be beside the character of John Connor was definitely an inspiration. When you think of John Connor, he represents so many great people in the world that have brought people together to save humanity.

So for me to have that dynamic with someone so powerful was great to play against and develop my character to see who he was.

Terminator Salvation - Christian Bale and Anton Yelchin
Terminator Salvation – Christian Bale and Anton Yelchin © Warner Brothers

YELCHIN: It was an interesting moment to play when Kyle Reese sees Connor and Connor sees Kyle Reese. Obviously, Connor’s going, ‘Oh my God, this is my father,’ and Kyle is going, ‘I don’t know who the hell this guy is’.

But there has to be some kind of emotional/spiritual connection between these two people so that was a kind of a fascinating, interesting moment to play because you didn’t want to play it like, oh, Kyle knows he’s his father, because he doesn’t, but it was interesting to find that beat of some vague recognition of something.


Judy Sloane

Judy is Film Review Online's regular Los Angeles based reporter.