Bale's 'Terminator' to be rated PG-13



The "Terminator" will indeed be back -- but this time with a more kid-friendly rating.

As production starts today on "Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins," the next installment in the action franchise, producers at the Halcyon Co. say they aim to deliver a PG-13 movie to Warner Bros. for release on May 22, 2009.

The "Terminator" series is one of the highest-grossing R-rated franchises of all time, with the first three films having grossed more than $1.03 billion worldwide. But Halcyon producers thought it was time to broaden the upcoming fourth film's audience base, and they believe the PG-13 won't compromise the series' gritty vision.

"The ratings have changed," said Halcyon co-founder and co-CEO Victor Kubicek, a broker-turned-writer-producer. "The PG-13 has increased in intensity."

Move follows last year's "Die Hard" film, "Live Free or Die Hard," which went out with a PG-13 after three prior R-rated installments. That pic went on to gross $382.1 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing in the series.

A family-friendly rating opens many doors, including a "Terminator Salvation" licensing deal for action figures with Playmates Toys.

Set in post-apocalyptic 2029, an adult John Connor, played by Christian Bale, leads the war to save humanity from the killing machines.

Signing Bale, who also stars in the current "Batman" series, was a huge coup. Sam Worthington, who fronts franchise creator James Cameron's upcoming "Avatar," also stars. The Terminator role is still under wraps; speculation centers on Josh Brolin.

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