The next film directed by Michael Bay to hit theaters will, for the first time since 2005, not be a Transformers movie; rather, it's the true-story bodybuilder crime flick Pain & Gain starring Dwayne Johnson and Mark Wahlberg. Hence, when the rumors popped up two weeks ago about Wahlberg playing a lead in Transformers 4, they seemed credible - before Bay shot them down, that is.
However, those rumors also seemingly succeeded in planting a seed of thought in Bay's head, with regards to who actually should play one of the human leads in the fourth Transformers movie. That's why Wahlberg is (apparently) in the running for real now.
Here is what Bay posted on his official site, with regard to that subject:
I squashed a rumor that was on the internet last week. It was about Mark Walhberg. Mark was rumored to be staring in Transformers 4. We are working on another movie together, not T4. I had such a great time working with Mark on Pain and Gain, and he gave such a great performance – well let’s say that very internet chatter gave me some ideas. We are at the inception of our story process right now on T4. Let’s say some ideas are gaining traction with me and my writer – so I’m here to say thanks internet chatter.
As it were, just before the Wahlberg rumors started circulating, there were also unconfirmed reports that the TF4 script from Ehren Kruger (Transformers: Dark of the Moon) features a female high-schooler and her car-racing boyfriend as the new human players. That news didn't exactly generate much enthusiasm, as it pointed to a film that treads on much of the same ground as the first Transformers movie (where Shia LaBeouf and Megan Fox play the teenager protagonists) - as opposed to, taking the series in a different direction.
Bay's latest comments do not, per se, contradict the aforementioned rumor about TF4 featuring under-age leads. He may now be seriously considering the idea of a character role tailor-made for Wahlberg, but the latter could easily end up playing second-fiddle to a pair of fresher-faced protagonists (like Josh Duhamel and Tyrese Gibson did in the original TF trilogy). Then again - dare we hope Bay is starting to appreciate the value of constructive fan input, after his responses to outrage over the Ninja Turtles reboot (which he is producing) encouraged little more than knee-jerk reactions?
On a related note: could Bay's claim that TF4 is very much in a state of flux right now have anything at all to do with reports about Disney looking to acquire Hasbro? Maybe not, but that doesn't stop us from speculating, right?
Transformers 4 (not the official title) remains set to hit theaters on June 29th, 2014.
Source: Michael Bay