You know what I love about McG? In one of my all-time favorite Television Critics Association press tour panels, McG tried convincing the room that some CW reality show about the Pussycat Dolls was actually reflective of a new wave of feminism. 

That same McG, he of the female empowerment epics "Charlie's Angels" and "Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle," used a goodly chunk of his Saturday (Feb. 28) afternoon WonderCon panel to lobby Warner Brothers executives to protect the artistic integrity of "Terminator Salvation." Or, at the very least, he used the time to lobby on the behalf of co-star Moon Bloodgood's breasts.

[More after the break...]

Sure, he spent more time going over his familiar spiel about meeting James Cameron before signing on to do the new "Terminator" ("I said, 'Can I have your blessing to make that film?' He said, 'Absolutely not.'"), but at one point he called on Bloodgood to stand and yelled, "Do you want to see Moon's boobs in the picture, because we shot them..."

He then pointed at the crowd and asked, "Who wants to see Moon's boobs in the picture?"

Naturally, there was a great roar.

He followed by inquiring how many people didn't want to see Bloodgood topless. There were a couple half-hearted cheers, but markedly fewer, a point he made to the hypothetical studio folks in the audience, evil studio people who apparently wanted to give Mr. Skin one fewer cinematic achievement to celebrate.

Dating back to San Diego Comic-Con last summer, McG has frequently repeated that Warner Bros.' President of Production Jeff Robinov had told him to make his movie and not to worry about a rating. With less than three months before release, there has begun to be some question as to whether "Terminator Salvation" will get an "R" rating, like the franchise's first three films, or whether it will make a bid for the larger audience made available by a PG-13 rating.

Studio bean-counters can point to the recent example "Live Free or Die Hard," which bucked the R-rated trend of its predecessors and became the series' highest grossing film. 

Smart money says that language and violence would probably be the things pushing "Terminator Salvation" in an R-rated direction and that Bloodgood's inevitably fleeting nudity would just be an added benefit of a more permissive rating. While Zack Snyder can get away making audiences cheer for additional blood and gore, however, McG's better off sticking to flesh.

For her part, Bloodgood says she was comfortable with the scene.

"It's a really pretty shot," Bloodgood insisted to a group of reporters after the panel. "I know, I'm very sarcastic, but I'm actually being very serious. I wouldn't have done it, first of all, if I'd felt uncomfortable. Secondly, it wasn't a sexual thing. I mean, obviously it was a sexual thing, but it was like a silhouette. There's rain and it's a moment where I'm drawn to this man and I don't care anymore, like 'If you see me, see me naked, see my vulnerability, see my emotion, see my body.'"

But did it bother her to have her director use her nakedness as rallying point for a room of thousands of conventioneers?

"It doesn't bother me," she insisted. "I think sometimes as an actress, you're seen as, 'OK, you're the sexual thing, so you probably don't have a lot of depth, you're not that bright.' I've just given up... I've almost reconciled to where I know who I am. I'm not just about sex and tits and boobs and I know that I have depth. So when guys make jokes, I think it's funny. I would do it too. I'm a tomboy. He can't embarrass me."

"Terminator Salvation" opens on May 22 and we have no idea what it will actually be rated.

 

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