*This article may contain spoilers*
At SDCC 2019 James Cameron live streamed in from the set of Avatar 2, 3 and 4 – which are all currently in back-to-back production.
In this introduction presentation James Cameron said:
“Eddie Furlong is back as John”James Cameron
We were hesitant to report on this, as we were sceptical of the information but the internet practically melted with excitement over Edward Furlong being back.
James Cameron’s wording instantly caused fans to hope, and believe, that Edward Furlong would actually be in the movie as an adult John Connor (more so for those who haven’t followed the leaks closely, or even just the general movie going audience).
We, like many other fans, have been following plot leaks and spoilers pretty closely (as tedious as we’ve found it) and we know that the majority of the leaked plot details have continue to be confirmed as truth.
A young CGI Edward Furlong (body-doubled by Jude Collie) is in the movie alongside a digitally de-aged Arnold Schwarzenegger (Brett Azar) and Sarah Connor.
Leakers who had access to a test screening stated that a young ‘Carl’ the T-800 (Schwarzenegger/Azar) would brutally shoot John Connor (Furlong/ Collie) dead at a beach bar in front of a somewhat inebriated Sarah Connor. The subject matter has been at the heart of division and controversy among fans. As far as the leaks go – this is the final tick box and the big one in terms of, ‘would they really do this?’… but it really looks like they have.
One fan ‘A Spicy Ghost’ summed up his outrage with a piece of fan art a while ago (below).
What’s interesting is that the media brush over the leaks and don’t acknowledge them but try to skirt around the subject, almost to the point of covering them and calling them “theories” so as not to be accused of spoiling any remaining mystery surrounding Terminator: Dark Fate.
At an SDCC 2019 post panel Reddit AMA ‘Ask Me Anything’ with host Scott Rogowsky and guests: Diego Boneta, Gabriel Luna, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Mackenzie Davis, Tim Miller and Natalia Reyes – the cast and their director, Tim Miller, were asked questions by the Redditers who had had up to two hours before the panel went live to begin asking posing questions.
One of the questions we asked on the AMA was:
“Tim Miller: How “back” is Edward Furlong? CGI facial likeness “back” – or fully physically present for a good portion of the movie “back“?”
We didn’t get an answer but there were, of course, a high volume of questions from fans, and studio vetting.
“What can you say about John Connor’s role in Dark Fate?”
Tim Miller responded:
“All I’m gonna say is that John is in the movie… in a very interesting way. I don’t want to give away, I can’t give away the way he’s in the movie or what happens because, ya know, you gotta come to the theater for some reason, right?.”Tim Miller
The Host Scott Rogowsky said: “yeah. There was some breaking news in the panel and it’s been reported now across the blogs, instantly of course, uh, Eddie Furlong is returning for this one.”
Natalia Reyes said:
Tim Miller said:
The Host Scott Rogowsky said: “So there is some involvement… ?”
Tim Miller said:
“That’s all we’re gonna say about it.”Tim Miller
Then The Wrap commented and said they had reached out to Paramount Pictures for clarification:
“It wasn’t clear exactly how or in what capacity Furlong appears in the film. The matter wasn’t brought up again during the panel discussion; it was previously reported that Jude Collie had been cast as a young John Connor, serving as a body double with CGI used to recreate Furlong’s facial likeness in flashback scenes. Paramount did not immediately respond to a request for comment from TheWrap. “The Wrap
Bloody Disgusting have a source that states that this is just a CGI cameo only as most of us will have suspected…
I have confirmed that early leaked reports were on target and that we won’t be seeing an adult version of Furlong’s John Connor in Dark Fate, at least not in the most recent cut of the film.BloodyDisgusting.com
My source tells me that yes, Jude Collie was in fact cast to play a young John Connor and that CGI was used to put Furlong’s face on his body. Now, here’s where this becomes news and not a rehash of what you’ve read here on Bloody Disgusting for over the past year – while Furlong isn’t physically in Dark Fate, he does deliver a brand new performance that’s been digitally placed directly onto Collie’s face. So, yes, Furlong is technically in Dark Fate, just not exactly how we all expected.
It’s also important to note that Miller and the cast are preparing for a round of additional photography that could change the current edit as it exists. It’s still possible that they shoot some new sequences that involve an older John Connor, but as of this writing, we’ll be seeing him in CG form.
As a side note, I’m told this new film bleeds James Cameron and is a worthy sequel to Judgment Day. Also, in case you were wondering, Biehn nor Reese are in this film.
So, Edward Furlong will not be returning to the Terminator franchise as an adult John Connor (as the source for bloody disgusting states) but instead just as a facial likeness digitally mapped onto Jude Collie (as previously reported) and a “brand new performance” – that description is a little vague but will most likely be in regards to physicality, movements, reactions, etc.
What do you think of this news?
Do you think it’s a case of miscommunication between the studios, Tim Miller and James Cameron?
Or was it a purposefully done marketing manoeuvre – which sought to utilise the nostalgia of fans?