Michael Bay: Transformers 4 is ‘grounded,’ not a reboot

Whether we like or not, Michael Bay is going to make another Transformers movie.

His first three flicks based on the metamorphous robot toy line have collectively generated over $2 billion worldwide, and since ludicrously over-the-top explosions don’t come cheap, Bay will continue cranking these things out whenever it feels as if his bank account is in danger of dipping below “crazy-rich” levels.

That’s fine. We’ve come to accept that as part of reality, but what really had us worried was Bay’s comments from February in which he described Transformers 4 as “a whole new re imagining of Transformers.” Coupled with producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura’s statement that the upcoming film would be a reboot of the series, this made us worry frantically as to what would happen with all of those characters we grew to know and love over the course of the first three Transformers movies. There was Shia LaBeouf, and … uh, a really pretty girl … wasn’t John Turturro in there somewhere? Oh! And that robot with the inexplicable genitals! We’re gonna miss that dude.

As it turns out though, Transformers 4 isn’t actually going to reboot the series. Instead, it’s just going to ditch the entire human cast while still retaining whatever sort of impact they may have had on a movie that is, realistically, just an excuse for giant robots to tear each other in half.

“It’s not a reboot, that’s maybe the wrong word,” Bay told the LA Times. “I don’t want to say reboot because then people will think we’re doing a Spider-Man and starting from the beginning. We’re not. We’re taking the story that you’ve seen — the story we’ve told in three movies already — and we’re taking it in a new direction. But we’re leaving those three [previous Transformers films] as the history. It all still counts.”

When asked if dumping the previously overexposed human cast would allow Bay to make Transformers 4 a bit more sci-fi, the director tentatively answered in the affirmative before backpedalling. “I want to go a little off but I don’t want to go too sci-fi. I still want to keep it grounded. That’s what works in these movies, that’s what makes it accessible.”

Right. Good point Mr. Bay. Your movies about giant robots battling over the fate of the universe and occasionally sporting inexplicable human testicles are accessible to the average person because they are so grounded. Look at that image above: Does that not scream “grounded?”

Then again, Bay does go on to say that he’s been directed to create this film with a budget $30 million lighter than the one he was given on Transformers: Dark Of The Moon, so maybe this is the film where Bay finally examines the deep emotional lives of his CGI robotic stars. Without that $30 million to fund insanely-huge pyrotechnics and vaguely racist comedy bits, perhaps Transformers 4 will be the On Golden Pond of giant robots punching each other to death. Fingers crossed that Bay can find a cast capable of bringing his dramatic dreams to life.

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