Kyle Reese is the most important character in the Terminator mythology outside of the Connor clan. He’s the only man John Connor could trust to go back in time and rescue John’s mother, Sarah. And as you know, John wouldn’t exist without Kyle. So with a Terminator reboot in the works, Hollywood was going to need a new Reese, and it sounds like that person has just been cast.
Variety reports that A Good Day to Die Hard co-star Jai Courtney is stepping into the shoes of Kyle Reese in director Alan Taylor’s new Terminator: Genesis movie. Paramount and Skydance will co-produce the film, which is being called a reboot. Not that they are going back and trying to retell James Cameron’s original. But they are trying to revitalize the franchise with a movie that is being described, in the story, as "the first film in a standalone trilogy."
Now, if you saw Courtney in the fifth (and flat-out worst) Die Hard movie, you might be shaking your head. He wasn’t good in that film, but I’m willing to bet that NOBODY could emerge from that blanket of stink unscathed, and maybe he simply suffered from abysmal direction and a nonsensical script not even Bruce Willis (in his SIGNATURE role!) could salvage.
Courtney burst on the scene in the cable series Spartacus. The Australian even proved to be a worthy foil for Tom Cruise in the underrated Jack Reacher movie.
With the addition of Courtney, the cast of this new Terminator story largely looks complete (unless there are several characters yet to be introduced, which is wholly possible). As has been reported, Game of Thrones beauty Emilia Clarke has been cast as the new Sarah Connor – a role once owned by the fantastic Linda Hamilton. Jason Clarke (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) is playing John Connor. And Arnold Schwarzenegger plans to return once again to his iconic role of The Terminator. He’s 66.
Casting is one thing. We need to know the plot (though details are being kept under wraps). The last time Hollywood tried to revive The Terminator, McG buried the franchise in military angst for the bleak Salvation. Is there a better story in play here? God, we hope so. Because the world of Terminator -- which blends post-apocalyptic science-fiction with the wide-open possibilities of time travel – is designed to go in so many different directions, and it’s only limited by the filmmakers tackling the project. Taylor was semi-handcuffed in Thor: The Dark World. Will be he a company man, again, or is Paramount giving him the keys and asking that he come back with some exciting and new?
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Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Sean created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.