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Terminator Salvation: The Characters

April 27th, 2009

Stars of Terminator Salvation

It’s been six long years since we’ve last heard from John Connor and his plight to save humanity from Skynet—an artificial intelligence who launched a nuclear war against humanity. Now, as Connor takes his rightful place as leader of the Resistance, he’ll need all the help he can get. Here’s an inside look into the film’s characters.

Christian Bale as John Connor
John is the son of Sarah Connor and Kyle Reese. He is the fated leader of the Resistance against Skynet and its army of Terminators. “He’s so much older and he has gone through Judgment Day,” Bale says of his character. “Living through an event like that alters everybody, so in many ways he’s a completely different person. Skynet is dominant but still in a state of evolution,” Connor fights on the front lines of the Resistance, but is not yet its leader. New developments by Skynet have rocked his vision of the future, as told to him throughout his life by his mother. She believed the future was not set, and his own doubts are growing that he may not live to initiate the events that
will result in his own conception—namely, sending Kyle Reese back in time to protect his mother. “Humans are definitely on the out,” says Bale. “Their backs are against the wall and their circumstances are desperate. This is the last, final effort for the survival of mankind.”

Sam Worthington as Marcus Wright
Marcus Wright’s appearance is a mystery. His last memory was of being put to death for committing a crime; he has no knowledge of how he came into this world or what his purpose is here. “Marcus had been on death row,” Worthington explains. “He was put to death. But then he wakes up in this post-apocalyptic world and has to go on a surreal adventure to figure out why he isn’t dead. The irony, of course, is that it’s only here, where living itself is a challenge, that he experiences true human kindness and compassion.” When he is discovered as being half machine, his purpose is questioned.

Common as Barnes
Barnes is a soldier in the Resistance and is John Connor’s right hand man. He is assigned to watch over Wright, of whom everyone has become suspicious. “Barnes is this spiritual warrior in many ways, fighting to the end by Connor’s side for the future of humanity, and he sees Marcus as a threat,” says Common. “But, by the same token, he’s been through a lot of things that force him to come to a spiritual understanding—about their struggle, about John Connor’s destiny—and much of it is tied into Marcus.”

Anton Yelchin as Kyle Reese
Kyle Reese, who will eventually travel backwards through time to save Sarah Connor (as seen in The Terminator (1984)), is at this point still a teenager, struggling to survive. “He’s a gritty survivor,” says McG. Adds Yelchin: “Kyle has survived day to day, eating whatever he can find. He’s out there surrounded by T-600s and other human scavengers who aren’t all friendly.” Kyle also wants to join the Resistance. But he is not alone in his journey—he’s accompanied by Star (Jadagrace Berry), a nine-year-old girl rendered mute by the trauma of war and displacement. Star has the uncanny ability to sense the presence of a Terminator before it appears, but, more importantly, her presence gives Kyle a greater sense of purpose.

Moon Bloodgood as Blair Williams
Blair Williams is a fighter in the Resistance. “She is a wonderful fighter pilot and a survivalist,” says McG. “She really knows how to maneuver, destroy machines and, most importantly, stay alive.”

Bryce Dallas Howard as Kate Connor
Kate Connor is John’s wife and partner in the Resistance. In the intervening years since Judgment Day, Kate has become a physician, training the best she can in these circumstances. “She finds books and she’s talked to as many survivors as possible, learning different techniques to enable her to save lives,” says Howard. Kate is the first to discover that Wright has been transformed into an unknown model of Terminator: a hybrid with a human heart, brain, and exterior, but the interior workings of a robot.

Helena Bonham Carter as Dr. Serena Kogen
Carter’s character is connected to Marcus Wright. She is a mysterious scientist with the then-fledgling Skynet unit of Cyberdyne Systems. “Helena plays a very proficient scientist who is working on the cutting edge of technology,” says McG. “She’s further motivated by the fact that she has terminal cancer. She truly believes her research could give people like her a second chance, but her research falls into the hands of Skynet, and the consequences of that are quite revolutionary for the machines. But she is indeed the one who enlists Marcus to donate his body for what she will only tell him is ‘research,’ and hers is the last human face he sees before dying.”

Terminator Salvation also stars:
Jane Alexander as Virginia
Jadagrace Berry as Star
Roland Kickinger as the T-800
Brian Steele as the T-600
Michael Ironside as General Ashdown
Linda Hamilton as Sarah Connor (voice)

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