‘Terminator’ Reboot Casts Jai Courtney as Kyle Reese

Published 1 year ago by

terminator 5 reboot jai courtney kyle reese Terminator Reboot Casts Jai Courtney as Kyle Reese

A fifth Terminator movie has been heavily rumored over the past three years, but now the project is finally coming together. The film seemingly began as a more straight-forward sequel with Justin Lin (Fast Five) directing, but a lot has (apparently) changed since then – with the project having been overhauled to serve as a reboot – one which may be titled Terminator: Genesis – of the 1980s-born sci-fi franchise, with Alan Taylor (Thor: The Dark World) calling the shots instead.

Arnold Schwarzenegger has long been attached to reprise his iconic Terminator role in the reboot as a futuristic killing machine with an “organic exoskeleton,” despite the actor being 66 years old now. Over the past few months, the rest of the main cast have progressively been filled out, with Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke set as Sarah Connor, Jason Clarke (Zero Dark Thirty) tapped to play John Connor, and the shortlist of actors to play Kyle Reese having very recently narrowed down to two candidates.

Variety is reporting that Jai Courtney has secured the last remaining key role in the Terminator reboot (i.e. Reese), after Paramount Pictures and Skydance Productions – which are funding the project – looked at several other possible actor choices, including Hatfields & McCoys costars Boyd Holbrook and Sam Reid. However, it was ultimately the Spartacus TV series alum who secured the role, as was first brought to life thirty years ago by Michael Biehn in James Cameron’s original cult hit Terminator movie in 1984.

Courtney has done solid work as a supporting player in films like Tom Cruise’s pulpy action vehicle Jack Reacher and the supernatural comic book movie adaptation I, Frankenstein, though his leading role in A Good Day to Die Hard – where he played the grown-up son of Bruce Willis’ John McClane – didn’t do a whole lot to bolster his image as a charismatic action movie hero (though, that wasn’t exactly his fault).

Still, Reese has traditionally been an important footnote – not a key ingredient – in the over-aching Terminator saga, with other characters (like Sarah Connor in particular) serving as the real heart and soul of the narrative; even in Cameron’s original film, Biehn as Reese wasn’t really the protagonist. So, in that regard, Courtney seems like a more acceptable choice to handle the character, based on the respectable supporting character work he’s done in the past.

terminator 2015 release date Terminator Reboot Casts Jai Courtney as Kyle Reese

There’ve been rumors about what the plot of the Terminator reboot might entail, though nothing official has been announced yet. So, unless the script by Laeta Kalogridis (Bionic Woman) and Patrick Lussier (Drive Angry) deviates significantly from the traditional Terminator mythology – something that many fans might find appealing at this stage – then Reese will still be the unknowing father to John Connor, as the result of some time-travel plot mechanics that result in Courtney hooking up with Emilia Clarke as the young Sarah Connor (and mother to humanity’s future leader in the war against the machines).

That said, it seems as though the powers that be behind the Terminator reboot – including current rights owner Annapurna Pictures (American Hustle) – intend to embrace the trendy “shared universe” approach, as there is currently a tie-in TV series being developed to accompany the new Terminator movie trilogy being planned. So, if you’re among those who’ve long yearned for this franchise to shift its focus away from the Connor clan (and/or Schwarzenegger’s cyborg model), then you may get your wish – on the small screen, anyway.

Be sure and let us know what you would like to see happen story-wise in the upcoming Terminator reboot (as well as the developing TV series) – not to mention, your thoughts on the casting of Courtney – in the comments section of this article.


The Terminator reboot is slated to begin filming by April 2014, for a July 1st, 2015 release date.

Source: Variety

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  1. Well, that was expected and also better than the other option they had.

  2. Awful choice.

  3. Should of cast Cap Hattfield

  4. This guy has zero charisma… bad casting.

  5. I knew he was going to be the new up and coming actor. So he better be good in this. I’m just scared that this is a reboot.

  6. Who saw Die Hard 5 and thought this guy could act?!

    • Well, lets face it, Michael Biehn wasn’t much of an actor yet he got the part of Kyle Reese too.

      Jai’s pretty much played tough guy roles in Spartacus, Jack Reacher and Die Hard 5 where acting wasn’t really necessary so like I said, this is a perfect role for him and a much better choice than the other guy they had lined up for it.

      If someone showed me an image of him and the other guy and said to me “pick which one looks more like the image of Kyle Reese you have in your head”, I’d choose Jai Courtney. It’d be like expecting Manu Bennett to play a romantic lead after a career as criminals, military guys, a gladiator and other tough guy roles.

      • I agree. I actually like the choice. Is the guy the best actor? I wouldn’t say yes but is he the best choice out of the people they had lined up? Yes

  7. Okay but Anton Yelchin was Kyle Reese in Salvation and he is a solid actor who did a fine job. Your opinion would be to follow that up with a not-so-talented tough guy actor? Boyd Holbrook would have been a far better addition to the cast.
    Can Jason Clarke & Emilia Clarke act? If so than Kyle Reese needs to be prtrayed by a good actor.

  8. I don’t know why anyone cares, I think we all new this movie was doomed the second it was announced.

    • Not really. Pretty good choices for Director, John and Sarah. Sarah for sure. Now Jai was amazing in Spartacus so I hope his movie career gets better with this.

  9. As soon as I learned this film would once again be focused on the Conner family I lost interest,the terminator universe is very large why do we have to keep focusing on the conners! they have been the center of every film. lets do a new story, and focus on something else.

    • I concur with every breath. Why do we have to focus on the Connors? Yawn!! Why why why? When will we see the war between us and them? Everyone wants it, so why can’t we just have it already???? I’m asking too many questions, says a lot about this film’s prospects!!!!

  10. Terminated.

  11. Casting is one thing, but what’s the point in bringing the character back in general? I understand wanting to take the franchise in a new direction, but Kyle Reese is a character that we’ve gotten everything we needed from in terms of story (unless they’re just remaking the original film entirely). I want to see more of John Conner or new characters, there’s nothing really new to do with the Kyle Reese.

  12. I think we can all agree that just a follow up to Salvation would have been better idea (bad movie, don’t get me wrong, but it had such potential with Christian Bale as John Conner and Anton Yelchin as Kyle Reese).

    • Agreed!

    • Yep, much better than this pony….

  13. So John McClane’s expressionless son is gonna get down with Khaleesi Mother of Dragons?!

    • That is one role I would like to get in on LOL

  14. This movie is sounding worse and worse

  15. The mistakes are under way then I see. Shame.

  16. How about just bringing back The Sarah Connor Chronicles

    • Totally agree. That show ended far too early.

  17. I think this is gonna have to be one hell of a movie because this has the potential to be a big flop.There are still Terminator fans out there but these days do people really care to support it to be a huge franchise?..that remains to be seen.

  18. Terrible freaking choice. Can’t stand looking at his dumb face, almost as much as I can’t stand his dumb, 1 dimensional acting. I’m still trying to figure out why Terminator: Salvation didn’t work out? It did well at the box office and I thought for the most part, it was a great movie with a nice cast. Anton Yelkin did a great Kyle Reese. Why the hell do they feel the need to reboot a freaking reboot that was successful? Christian Bale played great John Connor and Bryce Dallas Howard made a nice wife character. I hate that there is literally no carryover from a movie that was made less than 5 years ago.

  19. I’ll give this one a watch on Netflix when available.

  20. Well, that’s the film dead to me…..

  21. He [Jai] would have been a better choice as the Terminator.

    If this is a true reboot, it’s time to move on from Arnie playing the T800, he’s simply too old.

    A complete fresh start is what’s required, not that any new Terminator film is needed anyway – the first two are superb, anything that followed was merely fan fiction.

  22. We can only assume two things regarding Arnold’s involvement. Either he will not be playing the T-800, but a human counterpart, or we will get CGI Arnold again, but this time with Arnold actually doing the motion capture and voice acting. There is absolutely no way in hell Arnold can still pull off the T-800 at this stage in his life without serious help from a competent effects team.

  23. Im lost for words about this film. I was hoping it would have connections to previous films but not sure what to think the more I find out especially when they wanna make a trilogy & tv series in the same universe. T4 wasn’t terrible & could of lead to great films that weren’t focused on Sarah Connor again nor John so much.

  24. The only story left to tell in the Terminator universe is whether the human’s win in the long run or not. The rest is just anecdotes. I thought that idea of going back to the 50′s and seeing the human they modelled the T-800 after could be cool. But just like The Walking Dead they need to find an ending soon before it’s all watered down.

  25. This movie is going to suck. :/

  26. I’m not sure why they didn’t just proceed with the narrative after Salvation…I actually liked it more than T2. I guess this is just going to be a remake..but if it is a trilogy are they just remaking T1-T2 and then going in a new direction? I figure Arnold is only good for one more film.

  27. Jai would have been better choice to cast as a NEW Terminator than Kyle Reese. Prior to an hour ago, I’d never heard of Boyd Holbrook but after watching him Very Good Girls, not only did I find he was in the running to be Reese, but that he lost it too. Ugh. This kid AWESOME & he’s been in a ton more movies that I’ve watched, but never bothered to google until now. He’s like a cross between Ryan Gosling (his acting & great look) & David Arquette (his SMILE). I like him & I would have loved to see him as Reese. Oh well …