Transformers: Dark of the Moon released last week to astonishing box office results, but again and as per franchise tradition, also to a lot of negative critical reception. We at Screen Rant however, known for being vocal about our issues of the first Transformers and distaste of its sequel Revenge of the Fallen, had a blast with Transformers 3 and are eager for more.
Who else is eager for more? Not Shia LaBeouf and Michael Bay, who've openly stated that the trilogy-closing Dark of the Moon would be the last film in the series for both of them. But money talks, and there's a lot of money saying a lot of things right about now. So, what will it take for Michael Bay to return for Transformers 4?
Like the first Transformers, there's more than meets the eye when watching the action-packed spectacles, and many viewers need to see the film twice to take it all in. I needed to watch the first Transformers more than once on the big screen and so for Dark of the Moon, after joining a local screening, I was able to fly to Miami to watch it a (well-needed) second time in a private screening with Michael Bay.
With Miami being a "second home" to Bay, he made sure that Paramount held a special screening there for the film in addition to the big premieres and I was able to partake in the fun thanks to WOMWorld/Nokia. Although it wasn't a press-focused premiere like the Moscow and New York Transformers 3 events, this more intimate night out did have a red carpet setup for Michael Bay, star Tyrese Gibson and the Red Bull Air Force base jumpers. Yes, those intensely brave people who jumped out of the Trump Towers in downtown Chicago to make that momentous action sequence in the film possible, were there and they arrived in style.
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Jumping out of a low-altitude helicopter in the pouring rain, several members of of the Red Bull Air Force base-jumped with their wingsuits and landed in the intersection in front of the Regal South Beach Cinema where the movie was being screened and that was how our night began.
Before the film played, Michael Bay said a few words to the packed audience, reiterating what Miami means to him and his career and he touched on how this moment in time was "bittersweet" for him, in that he's happy to have accomplished what he did with the third Transformers film and the six years of his life he's dedicated to the series but he's sad that it's his last. Of course, this was met with "boos" from the crowd who want more (Trans4mers anyone?).
"This is bittersweet because this is probably the last one for me... [crowd boos] ... Hey, hey, but, but, last night it opened in America and did somewhere like $50 million dollars. Now in movie speak, $50 million in one day, on a Wednesday, that's freaking awesome so..."
"Probably," "but" and "so" a firm denial do not make. Tomorrow, Transformers: Dark of the Moon will pass the half-billion dollar mark at the worldwide box office so yes, Transformers 4 is coming and it'll be in 3D, and Paramount Pictures and Hasbro will sure want Michael Bay back in the director's chair. And I think he'll do it.
After Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Bay planned on taking a break from the Cybertronian wars and tone it down to work on a little passion project of his, Pain & Gain. After meeting with Speilberg about Transformers 3 however, they moved on to that instead and they managed to bring each of the heavy CGI movies out two years apart.
Giving the Transformers franchise a little break after Dark of the Moon may be best for everyone. It'll let the studio plan out how to launch another trilogy, it'll give give fans a chance to calm their brains down, and it'll give Bay some time to work on something different before returning - assuming that's something he ends up being willing to do and if it's something Paramount is willing to wait for.
Would you like to see Bay continue at the helm of Transformers film franchise?
[Update: Producer Don Murphy explains that Transformers 4 will not be a reboot, will kick off second trilogy.]
Follow me on Twitter @rob_keyes and let me know your thoughts and desires for the series.