Jason Clarke in Talks to Play John Connor in TERMINATOR: GENESIS; Director and Studio at Odds over Actress for Sarah Connor

     December 11, 2013


While we’ve been reporting on who might be playing Sarah Connor in the upcoming Terminator reboot, Terminator: Genesis, we might have an actor for her son…Her much older son.  According to Deadline, Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty) is in talks to play John Connor, the robot-killing messiah-figure of the post-apocalyptic future.  As we previously reported, Brie Larson (Short Term 12) and Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) are the frontrunners for Sarah Connor, and since they’re both younger than Clarke by about two decades, there’s clearly some time travelin’ going on.  I really hope that at one point, John Connor yells at his mom, “You’re not the boss of me!” and runs to his room.

Hit the jump for more.  Terminator: Genesis is set for July 1, 2015.  There’s also a TV series in the works that will be based on the new movie.

jason-clarkeLast month, we reported that Tom Hardy was being eyed for the John Connor role, but according to The Wrap, he’s already spent the past two years (on and off) in the post-apocalypse with Mad Max: Fury Road, and he’s already set for the Elton John biopic Rocketman as well as Takashi Miike‘s new film The Outsider.

But Clarke is a hot commodity in his own right.  He’s already been seen this year with supporting roles in The Great Gatsby and White House Down, and will be featured next year in the Sundance flick The Better Angels and the summer blockbuster Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.  He’s also attached to Daniel Espinosa‘s Child 44, and he’s expected to shoot Baltasar Kormakur‘s Everest before going on to Terminator.  He’s also filmed scenes for Terrence Malick‘s Knight of Cups, but who knows if he’ll be in the final cut when Malick is done with the editing process.

Paramount is clearly big on getting rising stars for Terminator: Genesis, and Emilia Clarke and Brie Larson absolutely fit the bill.  While neither is as busy as Jason Clarke, Emilia Clarke (no relation) and Larson are breaking through with Game of Thrones and Short Term 12, respectively.  Paramount believes Larson is the rising star, and she’s already been cast in their film, The Gambler alongside Mark Wahlberg.  However, director Alan Taylor is favoring Clarke.  The Wrap reports, “The two sides will have to come to a decision soon, as Paramount only has holds on the two actresses until December 15th.”

Personally, I’m fine with either actress since they’re both talented and we don’t know how the reboot defines the role.  Is this the scared Sarah Connor of the first movie, the badass of Terminator 2, a personality in between, or something completely new?  John Connor, meanwhile, will likely remain tough and grizzled.


  • axalon

    Wow, he’d be great. He’s not traditionally handsome and carries that grizzled look of someone who’s seen some shit which would be perfect for Connor.

    His performance in Zero Dark Thirty really stood out to me.

  • Josh Kaye

    I’ve also read that Orphan Black’s Tatiana Maslany was in the running for Sarah Connor as well on several sites. Either one of those actresses listed would be pretty great, but I’m pulling for Emilia.

  • JBug

    I liked him a lot in Zero Dark Thirty, but I don’t like this casting decision. I don’t feel he’s charismatic enough to play the savior of mankind.

    • axalon

      I don’t think you need to be charismatic to save mankind, rather you need to be that guy who will take control and do what needs to be done.

      • JBug

        I agree, but in a movie, if you’re going to save mankind and it’s supposed to be entertaining, I think you need a little charisma. Maybe it won’t be a war movie, in which case I can see him pulling it off, but if it’s along the lines of Salvation, I just don’t think he has the spark.

    • http://thenonessentials.blogspot.com/ Sean Chandler

      Has he had any big roles which would lend themselves to showing off someones charisma? It’s hard to be charismatic while stuff a terrorist in a box to get answers out of them.

      • JBug

        Good point. Maybe it’s just because he’s not as classically good looking as typical stars.

  • Steven

    Until they confirm Arnie as lead, I ain’t interested.

    • GunzOfNavarone

      Until they confirm a geriatric robot you’re not interested? – Maybe you can watch T3 again, “speak to the hand”.

  • FireWithFire

    Child 44 has already been filmed and is in post-production, so Clarke isn’t “attached” to the film. There were set pictures out like six months ago….

  • Werefon

    He was great as Ulrich the prison guard in Paul W S Andersons Death Race.

  • Masshuu il Malacandra

    The more I hear about this the more of a disaster it sounds. After the last fiasco can they afford another bomb?

  • whiskey_river1

    Is he gonna destroy the Terminator with his fivehead?

  • Idris Elba

    Idris Elba needs to be John Connor immediately or at least as a cybernetic organism.

  • Jamesy

    Awesome, he’s been great and stood out in everything I’ve seen him in so far. He has a great screen presence and was brilliant in Lawless.

  • eternalozzie

    But can he use a Batman voice? I think not.

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