I’ve never really doubted that Arnold Schwarzenegger would pop up in some form in Terminator Salvation. Nobody wants to make the first Arnie-free Terminator film, and while Arnie is very busy being my governor, there’s not really a good reason for him not to appear (except that he wishes the film shot in California instead of New Mexico). The trick, it has always seemed to me, was figuring out how to make it work from a scheduling point of view. When I was on the set of the movie everybody was pretty cagey about whether Arnie would be in the film – I got the sense that they were still working it out – but today’s visit to the Stan Winston Studio reminded me that there are lots of molds of the Governator’s face laying around. My own theory had Arnie’s face being placed on someone else via mask.

Latino Review received a scoop that the face replacement may be what’s happening, but since this is 2008, it would be happening digitally. The scooper is not a trusted source, and this ‘rumor’ has been around the web as fan speculation for some time, ever since an Arnold look-a-like weight lifter was hired by McG. Grains of salt.

But the picture at the top of this story, which has Arnie on the set of the film, talking to Christian Bale, does prove that the lines of communication are pretty open between him and the producers. And I’d be surprised if Arnold just stopped by the set to chat – I bet something productive happened. Although maybe, as Latino Review’s El Wop-o speculates in his headline, Arnold’s just trying to get back into the Batman franchise.

We’ll all know soon enough – secrets like this just do not keep!