In entertainment, there’s a solid rule that is adhered. Well, most of the time at least. Create a trilogy, let said franchise breathe for a few years, and take it back to new school with a slick reboot. These days, you can’t take a step forward without finding yourself in a theatre watching a new Robocop or a new Naked Gun film that stars Steve Martin as Frank Drebin, while Leslie Nielsen rolls in his grave hard enough to pierce the crust the planet.
Okay, that’s a bad example. But with a fourth Transformers film on the way from the saint of Baysplosions, Michael Bay, you’d imagine that rebooting the franchise after the last film tried to reenact a planet-squishing plot from Invader Zim would be in order. Nope, says Michael Bay, it’s going to be the same, but different instead.
Speaking to Forbes about the film which sees principal photography that now kicks off in May, Bay explained that the quadrilogy-maker was going to be less epic, and fresher;
“We’re going to start off smaller,” says Bay. ”There’s a brand new cast. To freshen the franchise, we’ve redesigned everything from top to bottom. The history of the first three movies is still there. We start four years later and there’s a reason why we’re meeting a new cast.”
New cast? Why yes, that is exactly what one can expect, thanks to the internet proclaiming that a fourth film starring Marky Mark Wahlberg was what they wanted. With Shia Lebouf no longer running around hopped up on redbull and various other substances while constantly shouting “no no no no no!” (Worst drinking game ever!), it’ll be up to Wahlberg to dodge explosions and random pieces of debris. And fortunately, Bay has had time to prepare Wahlberg, seeing as how he just shot a film about a bodybuilder kidnap plot gone wrong, in Pain and Gain;
“Mark is really excited about it and it’s a great redesign,” Bay continues. ”I said that 3 was going to be my last one. Paramount was letting me do ‘Pain & Gain’ and the ‘Transformers’ ride was opening at Universal and it was bittersweet to think of passing it off. I wanted to set it up on a really sure footing and to bring someone else in on that, it would have been overwhelming.”
As for that earlier mention about the film being a redesign, and not a reboot” Bay says that there will be a solid reason for that;
“We keep the ‘Transformers’ the way they were,” he says. ”It’s just four years later. There’s a reason the Transformers are redesigned. We’re trying to broaden the franchise and give it more places to go.”
And hopefully part of that redesign includes a newer, less insectoid look for the Autobots. Unless there are Insecticons running around, which would make sense. But besides that, hopefully Bay and his production department took a few pages from the High Moon Studios book of Transformer design, as they knocked the visual ball out of the park with their take on Autobots and Decpeticons in the recent Fall and War for Cybertron video games.
I’m an unashamed fan of Bay films. Story and acting issues aside, I find it hard to hate how he visually frames a film, as there isn’t a director in Hollywood today who can make a mundane scene as exciting as he can. Plus, Marky Mark gon’ be frowning at some Decepticons yo.
Totally worth the admission price.