With a decent opening for smaller-scale criminal bodybuilder movie Pain And Gain this weekend, Michael Bay may one day turn his attention to lower-budget films more frequently. First, however, he'll get back to the Transformers franchise, with the fourth film promising to recharge the series and set it running again with a new cast including Pain’s Mark Wahlberg.
While he promotes Pain, Bay has been talking about the changes he wants to make to Transformers. During a chat with Moviefone, he warns to expect some design changes in the new film. "You know there are a couple of historians of Transformers. I would do my designs of the robots and they’re like, ‘What if you just add a little bit more ears to Optimus?’ But they’re really hands off.
“We’ve redesigned them in Transformers 4, and there’s some really cool sh*t in it. I’m literally redesigning every character, top to bottom. There’s a reason why they’re redesigned, but it’s also to keep it new and fresh to me. I think the fans will appreciate some of this new stuff we have in the movie and some of the new characters.”
As for why he’s coming back for another spin with Optimus and co, Bay seems clear on the reasons. “You don’t want someone to f*ck it up. So I at least wanted to set it up on some good footing. Because you’re going to get a different kind of director who is not going to want to follow in my footsteps. Directors feel very territorial. So they’re going to go to a more inexperienced director. It’s just the way Hollywood works.
“And I’m thinking, “God, so I’ll redesign it, set it up... Someone’s gonna f*ck this up. This is way too big of a thing.” And I’m looking at all these kids and I’m like, “F*ck, I gotta do one more.” And then I brought Mark into it. So now we’ve got a movie star, we’ve got full redesigns. At least it’ll be on good footing.”
Transformers 4, which has Wahlberg supported by Jack Reynor, Nicola Peltz and Stanley Tucci, kicks off shooting in June with work planned in Chicago, Michigan, Hong Kong and China. It’ll be out on June 27, 2014.
But it’s not the only franchise Bay is overseeing: Bay is also a producer on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and took the chance to put one particular rumour to rest once and for all. “There was that quote saying that we’re making the Ninja Turtles as aliens. We’re not. It’s the ooze! It’s from the original source material. These are from the original writers, and I never went out to correct myself in the press. I do listen to the fans and I do want this to be authentic. I think they’re going to be really happy with this movie. When I see the digital stuff, the turtles look great.”
That one is shooting now and will feature Megan Fox as April O’Neill, with Alan Ritchson as Raphael, Jeremy Howard as Donatello, Pete Ploszek as Leonardo, Noel Fisher as Michelangelo and Danny Woodburn as Splinter. Jonathan Liebesman is behind the camera and it’s expected to hit our screens on May 16 next year.