The budget for the first Transformers spinoff movie Bumblebee will reportedly be about one-third of that spent on Transformers: The Last Knight. Without question the Michael Bay-directed Transformers live-action movie franchise has been a lucrative one for Paramount Pictures, earning more than $3.7 billion worldwide in the first four films. The most recent outing in the franchise, however, Transformers: The Last Knight, has stumbled in comparison, earning $517 million in its first four weeks. In all likelihood, The Last Knight will end up being the lowest global grosser of the five Transformers films, behind the $709 million the first film took in worldwide in 2007.
Whether it's in response to cutting costs following the disappointing returns for The Last Knight or merely it's the execution of a lower-budget plan it had all along, director Travis Knight will apparently have a lot less money to work with on Bumblebee than Bay ever has for the Transformers films.
According to THR, Bumblebee will reportedly have a budget of $70 million, which is about one-third of the $217 million budget Bay had for The Last Knight. The number shouldn't come as too much of a surprise, though, since producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura said last month that Bumblebee will be a “smaller” movie
While the budget is far slimmer for the Bumblebee solo movie than The Last Knight, fans shouldn't have to fret about the quality of the film. Yes, audiences should expect a dramatically different big screen interpretation of the iconic Hasbro action figure when the film goes into production next month, mainly because it is set in the 1980s and Bumblebee will be the sole focus of the film – meaning a lot less money will likely be spent on visual effects. Paramount will also be saving big money, too, by casting the likes of Hailee Steinfeld and relative newcomer Jorge Lendeborg Jr. over A-listers like Mark Wahlberg and Anthony Hopkins, and Knight surely will command a smaller director's fee than Bay ever did.
Fans, actually, may quickly embrace Knight's new vision, considering he was the creative force behind the Oscar-nominated Laika stop-motion feature Kubo and the Two Strings. After all, Knight did a lot more from a narrative standpoint in Kubo than Bay did in The Last Knight, and for a lot less money – and Kubo earned Oscar nominations for Best Animated Feature and Best Visual Effects, to boot. Perhaps Bumblebee will turn out to be not only the cheapest, but also the best Transformers movie so far.
- Bumblebee (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018