The first spinoff in the Transformers series, Bumblebee, is shaping up to very different from other films in the franchise. According to Transformers producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura, who spoke with Screen Rant this weekend, Bumblebee is an "intimate" film that focuses more on the relationships between the characters than the large-scale action the Transformers franchise has become known for.
The Transformers spin-off was announced in February of 2016, but it wasn't until later that it was confirmed to be a movie about Bumblebee. Kubo and the Two Strings director Travis Knight is attached to direct, with Christina Hodson (a member of the Transformers movie writing group) handling the script.
It seems only fitting that the first Transformer in the series to receive his own movie would be Bumblebee - the first Transformer to interact with humans on-screen, when Shia LaBeouf's character purchased a Chevrolet Camaro that turned out to be a robot in disguise in the very first Transformers live-action movie. What developed was a strong bond between the two characters that became a big theme of the original Transformers film trilogy.
It has already been confirmed that Bumblebee will be a prequel to the other films and will be set in the 1980s. The film will have a vibe reminiscent of the 1999 animated film The Iron Giant, which tells the story of a boy who forms an unlikely friendship with a giant robot innocent to the violent ways of mankind. When speaking to use about Bumblebee, Lorenzo Bonaventura also made comparisons to The Iron Giant, while going into more depth about what to expect from the spin-off:
I don’t want to give away too much about it but we’re making a very distinctly different type of Transformers movie. It’s a more intimate movie. It’s a little bit like Iron Giant which I worked on many years ago. It’s a smaller story but it’s still about these larger issues, the same sort of titanic clashes occur. But it’s a female lead, the relationship she and Bumblebee develop is very different than what we’ve seen before. And so I think people are going to love the intimacy of that movie in contrast to some of the big ‘wham bam thank you mam’ you know?
Though no official casting announcements have been made, it was earlier reported that the female lead who will make friends with Bumblebee will be played by 20-year-old Edge of Seventeen star Hailee Steinfeld. Bumblebee can currently be seen in Transformers: The Last Knight. Bumblebee is scheduled to begin filming this summer, with a release date set for next year.
- Transformers 5/Transformers: The Last Knight (2017) release date: Jun 21, 2017
- Bumblebee (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018