Transformers: The Last Knight producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura is revealing how ideas are formulated for the Transformers movies. Making its debut in theaters Wednesday, The Last Knight, of course, marks the exit of director Michael Bay from the series after five films. But ultimately, Bay is only a part (albeit a very large part) of a major collaborative process that always begins with the written word.
And while the basis for the action and adventure for the film series originated with the characters from Hasbro’s iconic toy line; the stories are crafted by the likes of Oscar-winning screenwriter Akiva Goldsman (A Beautiful Mind) – who shaped the core narrative of The Last Knight and is heading a writers room to expand the mythology of the Transformers saga going forward.
In an interview exclusive with Screen Rant, di Bonaventura explained how ideas are conceived for the Transformers movies, and what informed the basis for the plot of The Last Knight. He says:
I think each one has been slightly different. Usually it’s some kind of emotional construct. The first movie was boy gets car gets girl. That was sort of where it started. In this one I think it took on a larger ambition which was both the fusing of the Arthurian legend with the Transformers legend. Ironically they stand for quite the same thing – honor, courage, brotherhood, truth. You start, and it starts getting bigger on you. It’s really fun. There’s sort of a discovery to it.
Clearly from his explanation of the genesis of The Last Knight, di Bonaventura and his collaborators are not only intent on spreading the Transformers series over centuries, but finding some real meaning behind their motivations. The Last Knight for example, doesn’t begin in the Dark Ages just for the mere fact that it provides for a spectacular cinematic setting (and certainly a setting that’s dramatically different than what fans have seen in previous Transformers films), but because there’s a legitimate story that ties the entire narrative together.
As the production continues its arduous search to find a director for Transformers 6, it would be interesting to be a fly on the wall in Goldsman’s writers room to hear what sort of settings and story ideas the filmmakers are kicking around the next movie installment and beyond. The Last Knight has now kicked the door open to different historical settings in future installments, ranging from ancient history to but a few decades ago in the late 20th century.
For the time being, the first Transformers spinoff, Bumblebee, will only take the story back to the 1980s. As far as Transformers time periods go, the 1980s may be the most important era of all. After all, that’s when Hasbro debuted the Transformers toy line, planting the seeds of imagination for filmmakers like di Bonaventura, Bay and Bumblebee director Travis Knight.
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