Whether you love him or hate him, Michael Bay makes news. After the uproar of the ‘Ninja Turtles‘ film, eyes are now wondering about his vision for ‘Transformers 4’ and why he decided to once again take the helm in the 3rd sequel of the franchise.
Many people where quite surprised about the announcement as, after filming ‘Transformers: Dark of the Moon,’ he seemed adamant that was the last film in the franchise that he would be directing. He even went to his Shoot the Edit forum to refute the rumors saying that he was developing ‘Pain and Gain’ and would be focusing on that.
Then somewhere along the line, things changed and in February he announced that he would indeed be back helming ‘Transformers 4’ as soon as ‘Pain and Gain’ was done. So what happened?
In an interview with Huffington Post, Bay states that he just wasn’t quite ready to hand over the franchise reigns to anyone just yet:
“I thought I was done. Then the ride came out [at Universal Studios Hollywood] and the two-and-a-half-hour lines. And then you’re thinking, Oh my God, someone’s going to take this over. And you start doing a lot of soul-searching. “
He does emphasize, however, that his main reason is that he cares too much for the franchise and would like to set up the next phase before another director comes in:
“…I’m about to do a little movie, “Pain & Gain” … and the studio says they want to restart the franchise. And someone could come in here and screw it up, you know? So I’m thinking that if I do this last one, we set it on a new footing, we change a lot of things — but we keep the history of the three in place. But we broaden it so it can be set up and be carried on — it would have a better chance for survival, I guess. You know?”
Bay likens his reasoning to the way that James Cameron and Peter Jackson are still committed to their franchise films:
“So it was just one of those things. It’s like, when you look what’s going on in the film business with the franchise frenzy right now, why is Cameron doing two more “Avatar” movies? Why is Peter Jackson doing three more “Hobbit” movies that are in the same world as “Lord of the Rings”? When you have a franchise, it’s very hard to give it up.”
Of course there was a catch to have him direct ‘Transformers 4.’ Bay really wanted to make ‘Pain and Gain’ and since Paramount wanted him very badly to direct the ‘Transformers’ sequel, a bit of a quid pro quo was exchanged:
“They (Paramount Studios) wanted me to do something bigger. There are not a lot of people who do these big movies. So that’s why you have to twist their arm a little bit to do this. So I basically said, “All right, I’ll do ‘Transformers 4,’ we’ll do this little movie — we’ll do both.”
So it seems the deal was a win-win for Bay if he took the job of directing ‘Transformers 4.’ Because the film is said to be a restart and not a reboot of the ‘Transformers’ franchise, the sequel will continue where ‘Transformers: Dark of the Moon’ left off in Chicago. Although none of the live action actors from the previous films will be returning, Bay has confirmed that Peter Cullen will return as the voice of Optimus Prime for this film as well as some introduction of some new robots.
It does sound noble that Bay would like to continue on with ‘Transformers’ in order to prevent another director to come in and “screw (the franchise) up,” but there is a little part that sounds like he’s a bit selfish. Instead of a new set of eyes and a shot of new ideas for ‘Transformers,’ Bay is insuring that it’s his vision and his blueprint that will be setting the tone for any sequels following his.
“It’s exactly like I said,” he explains, “it’s just from the heart. You don’t want to leave “Transformers” in bad hands. Do you know what I’m saying? So we can set it up in the right way so it can kind of continue on.”
So what do you think? Are you happy to see Bay directing another ‘Transformers’ movie or would you rather see the franchise in another director’s hands?