Terminator 2: Judgment Day Nearly Had A Different John Connor

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When it comes to the character of John Connor, I hesitate to compare him to James Bond because, if we’re to stay with that train of thought, he’s more comparable to Felix Leiter, as humanity’s last hope is portrayed by a different actor pretty much every time we see him. But even though someone as remarkable as Christian Bale has played an adult iteration of the Resistance leader, the first actor that springs to mind when I think of John is actually Edward Furlong.

I say that because his turn as a youthful iteration of John Connor came in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, which many fans still view as being the zenith of the franchise. Personally, the first film remains my favorite, but I can still vividly remember how much of a pop culture force the James Cameron-helmed sequel was upon its theatrical release. Really, an action figure line geared toward kids was even rolled out for the R-rated blockbuster, of which I actually owned a decent amount.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day Nearly Had A Different John Connor

Still, it’s easy to see why Furlong made such an impression. With his wit and edgy personality, he kind of looked and felt like a male doppelganger of Roseanne‘s Darlene Conner, teaching Arnold Schwarzenegger’s T-800 such chestnuts as “hasta la vista, baby” and “chill out, dickwad.” Words of wisdom if I’ve ever heard them, folks.

But, believe it or not, the young Furlong was almost passed over for the role, which he reminisced on in the new documentary, T2: Reprogramming the Terminator:

“The first time I auditioned I had no script, because I was just supposed to be yelling at Mali, because she was like, my mom… Second audition, not so good. [James Cameron] told me, like, I didn’t do so well on that… She came over to my house and she said, Jim almost wrote you off the list, but you’re gonna get another chance. And I took it very seriously and I just went balls to the wall. After I did my last audition, Jim, he was like, ‘Don’t tell anybody this, but you got the movie’ — and that was awesome.”

Had Cameron not been so generous, one can’t help but wonder how differently history would’ve gone. Regardless, Terminator 2: Judgment Day can now be enjoyed in glorious new splendor thanks to a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray upgrade, which can be purchased on Amazon.

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