We can now report that the Batista heel turn was set to originally take place on last week's RAW. The segment ended up being scaled way back, and the heel turn was saved for SmackDown instead. The original plan was to have Orton interrupt Batista on RAW, as he did, and then cost Batista his match against Alberto Del Rio. Orton was supposed to talk about how the fans like Orton much more than they do Batista. That would've been Batista's breaking point, and he would then go off on the WWE Universe. Orton would've been credited with "Unleashing the Beast."
On the following show, WWE reportedly thought about having Batista slowly turn heel in segments over the course of the next few weeks, but due to the reaction he was getting from the live crowds, WWE decided to go ahead with the heel turn on SmackDown.
As previously reported, the original plan was to turn Batista heel at or right after WrestleMania 30. Those plans were moved up due to the negative crowd reactions.