Original Terminator 4 Ending Gave Christian Bale’s John Connor His Darkest, Most Demented Twist

Christian Bale's John Connor did not survive in the original script for Terminator Salvation

Original Terminator 4 Ending Gave Christian Bale's John Connor His Darkest, Most Demented Twist


  • Christian Bale starred in 2009's Terminator Salvation as John Connor.
  • The film dealt with the battle between humans and AI in a post apocalyptic setting in the year 2018
  • Christian Bale's character did not survive in the original script for Terminator Salvation
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Christian Bale made a surprising entry in the Terminator Franchise with 2009’s Terminator Salvation. The actor who is known for his rare appearances in blockbusters and franchise films was convinced by director McG to play John Connor in the film. The film was the first to not include/led by the main Terminator of the series played by Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Christian Bale in Terminator: Salvation
Christian Bale in Terminator: Salvation

Instead, the main focus of the story was on John Connor played by Bale, and director McG wanted a more darker and visceral approach to the material. While the film had a rather happy ending, the original pitch for its conclusion was more bold and harrowing.

Also read: “You make one tiny comment”: Christian Bale on if He Was “Hugely disappointed” Working With Nicolas Cage in 1 of His Greatest Movies


Christian Bale’s John Connor Did not Survive Terminator Salvation‘s Original Ending

Director McG reveals John Connor dd not make it in the film's original ending
Director McG reveals John Connor did not make it in the film’s original ending

Christian Bale played John Connor in 2009’s Terminator Salvation which was set in the year 2018 and dealt with the human resistance’s efforts to take down the AI network system Skynet. The film dealt with the present-day battle between humans and machines.

Bale’s John Connor survives and helps in achieving a significant victory against Skynet by the end of the film. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, director McG revealed that Connor did not survive in the intended original ending of the film.

The director revealed that Connor’s exterior likeness is replicated on top of Sam Worthington’s character Marcus Wright who is a human-terminator hybrid. This in turn leads to a harrowing scenario where Connor’s loved ones get killed and Skynet emerges victorious. He said,


“Connor dies, okay? He’s dead. And Marcus offers his physical body, so Connor’s exterior is put on top of his machine body. It looks like Connor, but it’s really Marcus underneath. And all of the characters we care about (Kyle Reese, Connor’s wife Kate, etc.) are brought into the room to see him and they think it’s Connor.

And Connor gets up and then there’s a small flicker of red in his eyes and he shoots Kate, he shoots Kyle, he shoots everybody in the room. Fade to black. End of movie. Skynet wins”

This is indeed a bold and darker ending which would have been provocative at the time. The film has since aged well compared to the recent films in the franchise. McG also has told Movieweb that an R-rated version of the film exists, which may perhaps get released one day.

Also read: Christian Bale on American Psycho: “I never viewed Patrick Bateman as a real character”

Christian Bale Was Never Interested in Starring in Terminator Salvation

Christian Bale was not keen on doing the film
Christian Bale was not keen on doing the film

Christian Bale starring in a Terminator movie sounds like a bit jarring for fans of the actor. The actor is known for starring in serious, character-driven films and rarely gets involved in blockbusters and franchise films. It was also proved to be jarring for Bale when he was approached for the film.


In an interview, he revealed that he had said no three times to doing Terminator Salvation. He also claimed that the only reason why he did the film was that people kept telling him not to do the role consistently and he wanted to prove them otherwise. He said (via Indiewire)

“I said no three times. I thought that the franchise…I went ‘Nah, there’s no story there. There’s a perverse side to me, where people were telling me that, there’s no way on God’s Earth that I should take that role. But when people started verbalizing that to me, I started to go, ‘Oh really? All right, well watch this then.'”

The film received negative reviews when it was released in 2009 and was not a box-office success. Bale calls the movie ‘a great thorn’ in his career. He has gone on to do greater things since that film.

Also read: “I really don’t need to actually hit you”: Christian Bale Almost Beat the Sh*t Out of Heath Ledger after Joker Star Consented




Written by Rahul Thokchom

Articles Published: 843

Rahul Thokchom is a content writer at Fandomwire who is passionate about covering the world of pop culture and entertainment. He has a Masters Degree in English that contributes to the richness and creativity in his works.