At the Warner Brothers panel at New York Comic Con on Saturday, Terminator Salvation director McG publicly reacted to his star Christian Bale's F-bomb-laden on-set rant, downplaying the controversy—before calling Bale's house and putting his wife on speaker phone!
During the Q&A portion of the panel, a fan asked if the current media furor over Bale's verbal harangue of director of photography Shane Hurlbut has hurt the film. McG responded with a joke: "What don't you f--king understand?" He then added, "It hasn't affected us at all. He talked about it yesterday; the whole thing got a little heated, but frankly the bigger violation is that anything that happens on a movie set leaks out. It's not fair, and I hope it doesn't color filmmaking in the future with actors being more cautious regarding going for it. It's part of the creative process. Christian took responsibility for how he acted. Shane and Christian are fine now. ... I wanted that kind of passion to show up in the John Connor character."
Owning the stage, McG initially whipped up the crowd by reiterating his very serious approach to this latest film in the massively successful Terminator franchise. Labeling the film as an "origin story" for John Connor's rise in the post-apocalyptic resistance, McG detailed again how he sought director James Cameron's blessing on his undertaking during a set visit to Avatar.
The director then went on to sing the praises of Bale, who plays Connor, smiling as he said, "You know Christian. He doesn't like to speak much. He's a very serious actor and likes to let his acting do the talking. He's a soft-spoken guy. So let's call his house and you can let him know what you think of this footage."
While onstage MCG then called Bale's home on his cell phone, and a female voice answered with a "Hello."
McG introduced Bale's wife, Sibi Blazic, and put her on speaker for the enthusiastic audience. She thanked the crowd for their support before McG introduced a six-minute extended trailer that was a slight re-edit of the road-show footage SCI FI Wire reported on last month.
When asked again about the likelihood that original franchise cast members Linda Hamilton (Sarah Connor) and/or Arnold Schwarzenegger would appear, McG hedged and said he couldn't answer without spoiling the film. Terminator Salvation opens in theaters on May 22.