It sounds as though Mark Wahlberg will be exiting the Transformers franchise after this month's Transformers: The Last Knight. It was just a few years ago that Wahlberg made his debut as Cade Yeager, the ambitious inventor, fearless fighter, and over protective father in Transformers: Age of Extinction. He was brought onboard as part of a new direction for the franchise following Shia LaBeouf's exit after Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Thanks to Wahlberg's status in the business and all the money the franchise makes, it was assumed he was going to continue to be included in the series, even after The Last Knight.
The Last Knight has yet to hit theaters, but Paramount has already announced plans to make Transformers 6, in addition to a Bumblebee movie spinoff. These projects will (apparently) be happening without Michael Bay as the director, but it now appears as though Wahlberg won't be involved, either.
Wahlberg is currently making the rounds to promote his next appearance in the Transformers franchise. He let this news about The Last Knight slip during his appearance on The Graham Norton Show (via Digital Spy), seemingly confirming that this is the end of the line for his time in the franchise - telling Graham Norton, "It's the last one so I get my life back!"
The rather-joyous way Wahlberg revealed this information makes it appear as though he is not sad to be leaving behind this franchise. Some of this has to do with a haircut he claims to hate, but could also just be because of the reception the franchise continues to receive. Maybe that buzz will change with The Last Knight and Wahlberg (and Bay) will leave with their heads held high and praise for their latest adventure - but until critics and general audiences get a chance to see the film, that possibility remains uncertain.
What this ultimately means is that Paramount will be searching for both a new director and star for Transformers 6. Assuming Wahlberg's comments can be taken at face-value, that means that the franchise will be introducing its third human protagonist, in Transformers 6. Perhaps this is why Isabela Moner has featured heavily in the marketing for The Last Knight, as a way of setting her up to be the new series lead - furthering a transition to female leads for the larger franchise, what with Hailee Steinfeld being set to star in Bumblebee. Either way, we will have a better understanding of how the franchise will continue once The Last Knight hits theaters.
Source: The Graham Norton Show [via Digital Spy]
- Transformers 5/Transformers: The Last Knight (2017) release date: Jun 21, 2017
- Bumblebee (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018