The Transformers movie series has seen plenty of outrage from the fan community (from Optimus Prime's controversial flame detailing to criticisms of the film's adolescent humor); yet, the franchise remains one of the most profitable trilogies in film history - grossing over $2.7 billion in ticket sales worldwide. Of course, that total doesn't include the highly-profitable merchandising that goes along with each film entry - toys, costumes, and clothes (among others) that have lined the pockets of Paramount Pictures and Hasbro for half a decade.
After previously stating that he'd conclude his tenure with the Transformers franchise after completion of the third entry, subtitled Dark of the Moon, Michael Bay will deliver at least one more entry in the series with the forthcoming Transformers: Age of Extinction. Now, thanks to Super Bowl Sunday, we're getting our first teaser trailer for the film (check it out above).
Despite the size of Bay's 3D blockbuster production, we know surprisingly little about Age of Extinction - save for the human and Cybertronian characters that will be included in the film. Considering there's less than five months before the film hits theaters, and this brief teaser is the only official footage out there, it's safe to say that Paramount Pictures has some major reveals in the pipeline - especially now that leaked merchandise images have provided a few choice hints on what to expect.
Above isolated rumors and unofficial sneak peeks, we do know that the studio has positioned Transformers: Age of Extinction as a "soft-reboot" - meaning a continuation of the current Autobot storyline but with significant tweaks to the robot designs as well as swapping out the human cast (formerly led by Shia LaBeauf) for an all new batch of unsuspecting do-gooders (with Mark Wahlberg in the starring role).
In addition to revamping the core franchise framework, Age of Extinction is intended to establish an all new set of films (to be helmed by other directors) and significantly expand the mythology - with a possibility that, by the end, the series could even tackle cosmic foes like Planet Eater, Unicron. Still, in spite of many exciting possibilities, the most anticipated element of Transformers: Age of Extinction is the confirmed inclusion of fan-favorite Autobot team, The Dinobots.
Leaked merchandising images gave us our first (cartoonish) glimpse at the Grimlock design, but now that the film's trailer is out - with the release of the Super Bowl teaser - fans will no doubt be especially excited to see the raging T-Rex (ridden by Optimus Prime).
We'll have to wait for the full trailer to get a better idea of the actual storyline but it looks as though Bay might actually deliver a movie that's even bigger and more exciting than Dark of the Moon.
Transformers: Age of Extinction hits theaters on June 27, 2014.
Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick for further updates on the Transformers film series as well as future movie, TV, and gaming news.