Bumblebee is headed to San Diego Comic-Con, making it the first live-action Transformers movie to attend the event. While the Transformers multimedia franchise is, of course, not at all a stranger to the biggest annual geek event, the live-action films have thus far steered clear of SDCC. Now's as good a time as any for that to change, seeing as Bumblebee is aiming to usher in a new era for the robots-in-diguise on the big screen, after years of their films being critically derided.
Paramount appears to have shelved its Transformers cinematic universe plans in the wake of Transformers: The Last Knight's commercial under-performance last year. The studio nevertheless seems optimistic about Bumblebee and has all the more reason to be, after the generally positive response to the Bumblebee teaser trailer released last month. As such, Paramount will strive to keep that good buzz going by giving the film its own Hall H panel when SDCC gets underway in a few weeks.
Deadline has been informed that Paramount will host a panel for Bumblebee in Hall H at SDCC 2018 on Friday, July 20 from 5-6 pm MST. Bumblebee director Travis Knight (Kubo and the Two Strings) will be present at the panel, along with stars Hailee Steinfeld, John Cena, and Jorge Lendeborg Jr. Further, the panel will not cover any other upcoming films that Paramount has in the pipeline (including Mission: Impossible - Fallout, which opens a week later), unlike the studio's SDCC panels in years past.
Bumblebee takes place in 1987 and follows "B" as he makes his way to earth, in order to carry out a mission for Optimus Prime. Along the way, the eponymous Autobot encounters and befriends a young mechanic named Charlie (Steinfeld), who aids him on his secretive operation. In addition to featuring the Transformers movies' first female lead, Bumblebee is further mixing things up by pitting its heroes against fewer Decepticons (three total) than previous entries in the series have.
For Paramount, this year's SDCC is a chance to not only keep building hype for Bumblebee, but also to present the Transformers live-action film series in a more geek-friendly light. The previous five installments in the franchise were all directed by Michael Bay and geared more towards general audiences, rather than fans of the Transformers across multiple mediums. By comparison, with its GI Transformers designs and deeper dive into Cybertron's history, Bumblebee promises to show more love to the property's steadfast supporters, starting with an appearance at SDCC.
The 2018 International Comic-Con runs from July 19-22 this month in San Diego.
- Bumblebee (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018