Even though Transformers is probably the most divisive ongoing film franchise (though an argument also could be made for the Fifty Shades of Grey series), the four live-action films released in the last decade have earned a combined $3.8 billion worldwide.
Translation: these films aren’t going anywhere for a long, long time.
Yet, in addition to robot-smashing mayhem and mountains of box office cash, the other common element between all of the releases to date is director Michael Bay, whose fifth effort in the series heads to theaters this year.
Prior to both Transformers: Dark of the Moon in 2011 and Transformers: Age of Extinction in 2014, the filmmaker proclaimed he was ready to move on from the franchise in order to tackle other projects. However alternating between his flagship franchise and “smaller” films like Pain & Gain and 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi has seemingly kept him refreshed and coming back for more.
So here we are just a few months prior to the June release of Transformers: The Last Knight, and Bay once again is proclaiming this fifth installment might truly be the last one he directs. In a lengthy post on his website, Bay discusses the future of the films, the writer’s room Paramount Pictures assembled to break the mythology wide open, and what has kept him interested in Transformers for so many years.
But it is a passage toward the end in which the director indicates he’s ready to leave subsequent entries in other hands.
“It’s bittersweet for me. With every Transformers film, I’ve said it would be my last. I see the 120 million fans around the world who see these movies, the huge theme park lines to the ride and the amazing Make- A-Wish kids who visit my sets, and it somehow keeps drawing me back.
“I love doing these movies. This film was especially fun to shoot. But, this time might really be it. So I’m blowing this one out.
“It’s a final chapter and a new beginning.”
In some ways, The Last Knight would be the perfect swan song on which Bay can exit the franchise. It has long been said that the film will kick off an interconnected Transformers shared universe, which already includes a sixth entry in the franchise as well as a spin-off featuring fan-favorite Bumblebee.
Discussions even have included a potential crossover with other Hasbro properties like G.I. Joe and Micronauts, though those have yet to truly develop. The Last Knight is said to provide some sense of closure to this era of the franchise and pave the way for more adventures to come.
Perhaps, with such ambitious plans ahead, Bay’s vision has gone as far as it can. The time has come for other filmmakers to have the chance to take Transformers into new and different directions, allowing the series and its characters to thrive for the foreseeable future.
If Paramount really hopes to leverage the franchise’s current popularity into a seemingly endless number of sequels, spin-offs, crossovers, prequels and (ultimately) reboots, it will take more voices than simply Bay’s to keep audiences from eventually tiring of the shape-shifting alien robots.
Robert Yaniz Jr.
Latest posts by Robert Yaniz Jr. (see all)
- Wizard Of Oz Franchise Re-envisioned As Horror Film - March 7, 2017
- ‘Saw: Legacy’ Follows Original Continuity, Tobin Bell Returns - March 7, 2017
- ‘Kubo’ Director Travis Knight Joins Transformers Spin-off ‘Bumblebee’ - March 7, 2017
- Will Next Two Avengers Films Cost $1 Billion? - March 4, 2017
- ‘Gotham’ Casts DS9’s Alexander Siddig As Ra’s Al Ghul - March 4, 2017