Oscar nominee among the early cast members for first Transformers spinoff

If Transformers: The Last Knight can have a cast that collectively accounts for five Academy Award nominations for acting and one win, then anything’s possible for the Bumblebee movie’s cast — which continues to grow after adding its own Oscar nominee.

Deidra & Laney Rob a Train actress Rachel Crow is the latest to join the Transformers spinoff film’s cast, which already includes Brigsby Bear and Spider-Man: Homecoming actor Jorge Lendeborg Jr. and Oscar-nominated True Grit and The Edge of Seventeen actress Hailee Steinfeld. Crow is in talks for a key role alongside stars Steinfeld and Lendeborg, according to the initial, unconfirmed report from Tracking Board.

One of the most popular robot characters in Michael Bay’s live-action Transformers franchise, Bumblebee famously transformed into a yellow Volkswagen Beetle in his original, cartoon incarnation, but turns into a Chevrolet Camaro (also yellow) in Bay’s movies. The still-unofficially titled Bumblebee movie is expected to be a prequel to Bay’s films, exploring the title character’s adventures in the ’80s, before the events of the live-action movies.

The characters played by Steinfeld, Lendeborg, and — if talks are finalized — Crow are all unknown at this point. The film is currently set to be directed by Travis Knight, who’s best known for his stop-motion animation work and directing last year’s critically acclaimed and Oscar-nominated feature Kubo and the Two Strings. The script for the Bumblebee movie comes from Christina Hodson, who previously penned the scripts for the 2016 thriller Shut In and 2017’s Unforgettable. Hodson also serves as a producer on the film along with Bay, Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner, Stephen Davis, Lorezo Di Bonaventura, and Steven Spielberg.

Across five live-action films, the Transformers movie franchise has collectively earned $1.4 billion in U.S. theaters and $4.2 billion worldwide. The most recent installment of the franchise was this year’s Transformers: The Last Knight, which has earned $120.7 million domestically so far and $504.1 million worldwide, making it one of the lowest-grossing films in the series.

With he Bumblebee movie scheduled to hit theaters June 8, 2018, more updates on the project are likely to be announced in the near future, as cameras will need to begin rolling soon.

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