Saturday, July 31, 2010

Mercedes' Transformer Name Revealed

Update: This is officially debunked by Nelson as the quote mentioned below did not come from him.

Yesterday the admin for MB.com, Nelson, verified the group name of the Nascar vehicles (The Wreckers) and revealed that the alt mode of "Einstein" is the blue Mercedes seen in Chicago with the other Transformers vehicles. At the time, he also corrected everyone that the Mercedes Benz is an E550, not E350 and linked to his picture of the car. Same pic I used for the post yesterday (and now today). However, I do not recall seeing the photo title of "Mercedes E550 "Q" on the set Transformers 3 in Chicago, Il" Not saying it was added later, just that didn't pay enough attention to remember if one was there or not. Main point is the title tells us the name of the character is simply "Q".

Could this be a reference to the omniscient god-like character from Star Trek: The Next Generation? Or the legendary Q (for Quartermaster) from the James Bond films that supplied him with all his gadgets along with sage advice as most memorably played by the late great Desmond Llewelyn? According to TFW2005, it is the latter as they posted "His name is "Q." Like in James Bond. -Nelson-” I wasn't able to find where the quote came from (guess via an email) but the flickr account is Nelson's so that verifies the Q name and I don't see Michael Bay (who ultimately approves the names assuming they clear legal) being much of a Star Trek fan so a James Bond homage is likely. I guess Wheeljack didn't get Bay's approval or legal's (Hasbro sadly allowed a lot of their G1 trademarks to lapse and couldn't retrieve all of them) as he was essentially the quartermaster of the Autobots in the G1 cartoons. Thanks to Chris and Jeff for the link.

Dempsey Has Gun, Will Travel (Update)

Just in case a video of a fight between the two characters of Patrick Dempsey and Shia LaBeouf isn't enough proof that "Dylan" (rumored name) isn't on the side of angels, how about pictures of him pointing a gun at the character thanks to Johnny T. This is a guess but I think the gun is what leads to the fight as nothing like Transformers attacking to distract you from a target.


New Redhead Transformers Face

In a video posted on YouTube by lowfatoreo over a week ago, it turns out the face of one of the Transformers was captured while Transformers 3 production was working around the Michigan Avenue Bridge. The head can be spotted around the 3:50 point in the video below. The color suggests this is the head of the Autobot Ferrari 458 Italia but the red Wrecker and Rollbar would also fit the bill. As usual time will tell. Thanks to Mike G. for the link.

Friday, July 30, 2010

One Name Theory Rejected, Two Confirmed (Updated)

In a new series of posts from Nelson, the webmaster for MichaelBay.com, more info on the Mercedes Benz E550 Autobot and another name for the Nascar vehicles has been rejected. One theory for the Benz is he is the replacement alt mode for Jolt. Not unreasonable considering the similar color scheme and shape.

Nelson posts the "Mercedes is not Jolt." He does indicate if Jolt is or is not in the movie so that remains unknown. He then later eleborates, "the blue Mercedes and the Einstein-looking bot are the same" confirming the suspicions of some. Sadly, "Einstein" remains nameless, with Nelson previously rejecting Kup and Perceptor as names. The current contender now seems to be Wheeljack. Thanks to Chris for the links.

While posting about the Benz, he also went ahead and quickly rejected another name about the Nascar vehicles. Previously guesses included Stunticons and Omnibots and now Nelson adds Rallybots to the rejection pile with a simple post of "No." to the idea.

The new theory, and maybe the best one yet, comes from an extra set report, who reportedly heard that TF3 production crew called them the "Wreckers" (now confirmed, see update below). Of all the names, I could see this one speaking to Bay the most simply due to his love of causing mass destruction. It also fits for their look with all the artillery. The Wreckers was created specifically for the comics by Simon Furman as an Autobot commando unit comprised of various and changing G1 characters. The IDW series, The Last Stand of the Wreckers is the most recent use of the team in comic continuity. Image and link from TFW2005.

Update: More from Nelson this time on the TFW2005 forums. He verified that the name of the Nascar cars with the post "They're Wreckers." He then followed that up with, "That's what they're referred to as on the set," confirming the set report on that regard. Last, he made a correction (with pic) on the model of the Mercedes Benz as an E550, not E350 as I had guess incorrectly as the number from pictures. Still not sure of the year but assume 2011. The cheat sheet has been updated accordingly.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Behind the Scenes Videos Confirms A Decepticon, New Enemy and Locations

Another day of news coming from Transformers 3 production. For the last few weeks a security truck was spotted, including in a news report, that looked liked the Decepticon logo. Thanks to the first video below, that can now be confirmed (Shockwave's alt mode?). The end of the video might shows some of the planning that goes into making sure a scene goes off without incident or injury for a scene that will be filmed at "Hotchkiss Gould Investments" aka the local 7/11 and the Milwaukee Art Museum (the magic of movies). The scene involves Rosie (Carly), Patrick (Dylan), Megatron and a "new Autobot". It seems the scene is a continuation of scenes shot back in Milwaukee based on the participants the use of the same armored truck that was used at the Museum. A source has indicated that Chicago is the setting of a battle between a large new Autobot, 9 new human characters (probably the NEST team) and Transformers: The Movie level of death. Which doesn't sound like things go well for Ironhide.

The 7/11 location is also the same location of the pictures with Patrick Dempsey looking dangerous with a gun. As the second video shows, he is not a friend of Shia's Sam Witwicky since the two seem to be duking it out on top of the debris which matches with the other pictures of the two climbing on roof debris as Shia lays out on the ground and Dempsey looks into the air. The last video is what any video set for Transformers 3 needs - an explosion. That was filmed at The Park at Lakeshore East a day or so ago.

The last bit of news is info on where to find TF3 production which is scheduled to end on August 19th. According to the On Location Vacation an upcoming location is "at 35 E. Wacker Drive (the old Jewelers' Building) and will close portions of Wabash and Wacker on July 31 and August 1st." The site also provides a few details on Ron Howard's The Dilemma which will be filming in the city. Thanks to Sam for armored car link, Chris for the fight video link and Ray for the explosion and location links.

MPEA Busway Set Pics, Explosions and More

On Wednesday, it seems that Transformers 3 production spent its day at the MPEA Busway under Millennium Park. The sequence involved explosions, smoke and flame effects and what appears to be a completed destroyed section of the highway, matching the devastated look that has been the hallmark of many of the Chicago sets. Pixel Rally was at the site and provided a gallery of images both during the day and night of the set and a good look at the Optimus Prime truck and trailer. Below are a few sample images, the rest of the set can be found here.

As for the videos, below are videos from various locations around Chicago, not even sure where but assume the Wacker Drive area. The first three videos may be from the Busway but not clear. Based on the Transformers cars filmed including Optimus with his trailer, this seems to be a continuation of the Nascar vs. Autobots chase scene that marked the first week of filming. Of special note is the third video that shows that the Twins do make it to Chicago. After that we have two more videos that show the rooftop pyrotechnics that were set off on Tuesday night. The last video involves a massive explosion at a third location and the sound of gun fire. If don't feel like scrolling down, the Movie Chronicles have them all.

Dempsey in Action, Rollbar and More

Transformers 3 production is about to enter week four of production in Chicago. This update covers a rather wide range of topics with two photo galleries, another look at Rollbar, and info on next week's location. To start with, one of locations for next week. Thanks to Tatjana, it seems that production will be at the Old Chicago Post Office Building off of Van Buren Street (and across the river from Wacker Drive). This is the same location used in the opening scenes of The Dark Knight. The shoot there will be from Monday to Wednesday from 7AM to 10PM. The shoot will require surrounding streets to be closed and will involve pyrotechnics.

So back to where we have been, JustJared.com has posted more photos of the cast at working, with special focus on Patrick Dempsey who seems to be in full bad@#% mode. I can't tell the location but might be the same Wacker Drive set with the rooftop debris. It makes me wonder if what is being filmed there isn't the two versus a Transformer but those two fighting each other. An anonymous source tells me the character might be named Dylan and JustJared suggests that the rumors of the character being "dark" is true as he was seen "aiming a gun at his co-star Shia LaBeouf." The expressions in some of these photos suggest this might be a bad guy in disguise. I keep thinking the story involves a third faction that just sees all Transformers as enemies, based in part on the "Autobots Go Home" graffiti used on some of the sets. Some more photos below, the rest of the 20+ picture set can be found here.

As we learned yesterday, it seems that the Autobots have a new ally with Rollbar. Also below are three images that show off the vehicle, including the interior. I have to admit to being confused on what the photos are for but they provide an idea of just how large the Jeep is. Thanks to Todd for the pictures.


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Megatron, Rollbar Confirmed for Transformers 3 (Updated)

It has now been confirmed that Megatron is part of the action in Chicago and that the jeep from the other day is the Autobot Rollbar. The image of Megatron comes from an anonymous source that spotted the head cut out on the set. He also mentioned that there is another Decepticon involved in the battle that has yet to be identified by fans or even named which means that Megs, Shockwave, Soundwave and Starscream are out. This unidentified Decepticon is part of a shootout on top of a building between cops and SWAT.

As for Rollbar, as the pictures show, there is no room for doubt with his name being spelled on the vehicle and the Autobot logo on the door. The TB on the license plate (below) is probably a nod to his G1 Throttlebot origins (basically legend class with a pullback motor). The character has since popped up in name only for various Transformers toy lines over the years including as a scout class delivery truck in the Revenge of the Fallen. While a long history as a toy, the character and personality doesn't really exist creating a blank slate for the Bay and company to work with. The rest of the pictures of the character can be found at TFW2005. Anyone know the year, make and model of the car for the cheat sheet?

Last, it seems Transformers 3 production has moved to Trump Tower according to ChicagoBreakingNews.com. At least they were there last night when "from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., flame effects and smoke will be used on adjacent building rooftops along the Chicago River between Wabash & Columbus. Also, there will be flame effects on boats in the Chicago River and on cars on the Columbus Street Bridge and Wacker Drive." The article did not identify how long they would be using the location.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

TF3 Chicago: New Video and Business Impact

MichaelBay.com has posted two new videos that show off more footage from the filming at Wacker Drive in front of Hotel 71 in Chicago when Transformers 3 filmed there last week. The first video seems to come from people staying at the hotel. The result is a up close view of the action bring a whole new look at footage we have seen before but now get new details and better look at the explosions that were filmed.

The second video is from ChicagoBusiness.com where they ask if the traffic snarls was worth it. It seems most of the local businesses most directly impacted by production believe it was as most have experienced a spike in sales. Also it seems with the additional use of national guard soldiers, local production crews, police and so forth, the production has created around 400 temp jobs rather than the expected 200.

More Wacker Drive Set, Videos and a New Transformer?

Transformers 3 production continues at Wacker Drive in Chicago and based on recent images it is a scene that mostly involves Patrick Demsey, Shia LaBeouf and probably a Transformer or two. Below is a sample of photos from a 56 photo set from the location as the two actors climb and lay down among the debris while Bay does his thing. Not sure what is being filmed but seems like a hero moment for Dempsey's character. The set was taken by a Transfan that managed to sneak onto the set. The full set can be found at The Chive. Thanks to Mackie for the link.

It also seems that a new Transformer may have entered the scene with a red Jeep spotted in beautiful condition (vs. the damage of the rest of the non-TF vehicles being used). The video (below) from MGRead, shows it on the back of a production truck so nothing definitive, just something to keep an eye out for. Two other videos show more filming from the last few weeks, behind the scenes stuff and Josh P provides more footage with a little CGI insertion of 'Bee for fun.

War for Cybertron DLC Preview

While most gamers are probably getting Starcraft II, if that isn't for you then at least you can get the DLC pack for Transformers: War for Cybertron. The game includes 5 characters (3 pre-order ones, two new), maps Havok, Fortress, District and Forsaken. The price is $10 or 800 MS points. Below is a video from Inside XBox that shows off the new additions that the pack will bring to the game.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Transformers Linkfest

More linkfesting, with three video reviews and multiple galleries of upcoming toys, most of them Japan exclusives or fan releases.

Human Alliance Jazz Comparison Gallery
Click the link to view the differences between the Hasbro and Takara release of the same basic figure. Part of the Human Alliance line, this figure comes with Captain Lennox. There are cosmetic changes to the paint job of Jazz and Lennox, nothing major really just odd as the companies often release identical toys in the main lines. My best guess being is that Takara's attention to detail required them to adjust the figure to a more movie accurate look.

Official Re-Issue of Predaking Images
Takara has released official pictures of the re-issue of the re-issue of the Generation One combiner Predaking. This figure was already re-issued around 2005 (if remember right) and coming out again. I am not sure if there is much of a difference between the releases but it looks like a gold color paint job was added. The toy is coming out in late November and so far no indication of a stateside release.

More Shockwave & Soundwave, Extended Bay Video and More

Thank to new pictures from mtoeset, we have verification that Shockwave joins the Decepticon cause. As the picture show with clarity, this has to be Shockwave with the cyclops eye and I think purple color but the large red lightning (which caused the helmet look in previous picture) makes it difficult to tell for sure. The head next to him is of course Soundwave (also spotted the other day).

The cut-outs are used for special effects, camera coverage and actor eye-lines and suggest that both characters enter the action at ground level in some form or fashion. The real question is since Shockwave's G1 alt mode was a Cybertronian gun and his appearances after that was a Cybertronian tank, what will his alt mode be now? To view the rest of mtoeset's pictures which includes Bumblebee, Ratchet and the cast at work, click here. Thanks to Feris and DJ BigTyme Beats for the link.

Nelson from MB.com has now posted the extended edition of his Transformers 3 Chicago set video. According to TFW2005, the differences is Rosie talking to Tyrese, Bay and company greeting the crowd, a look at the Ferrari 458 Italia & Mercedes-Benz E350 Autobots, a scene being shot, and a brief look at TF3 teaser poster.

As for more videos, the one after the extended MB.com video is a compilation video that shows of a Chicago transfan capturing a lot of new footage I have not seen before. The beginning shows the probable stunt double for Shia running down the street, jumping over and under cars. After that you get a look at them filming at Hotel 71, from office windows, and a slideshow of more photos. Thanks again to DJ Big for the link. The second shows Shia LaBeouf in Chicago meeting the fans, taking pictures and signing autographs. Thanks to Josh P. for the link.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Transformer 3 at Wabash and Wacker

Probably a bit late for most to take advantage of but now we know were Transformers 3 production is working this weekending in the city of Chicago. Chicago Breaking News reports they have set up shop at East Wacker Drive from Wabash Avenue to State Street. Just in case you need proof thanks to Jonnyroobs for the two pictures in this post as the set is prepped. He didn't spot any Transformers vehicles but did see Shia's stunt double on the prop structures. Also NBC Chicago has a nice gallery of images from filming last week. Thanks to Katie and DJ BigTyme Beats for the links.

Filming of the "Transformers 3" movie is continuing this weekend, and parts of Upper Wacker Drive are closed and 11 downtown CTA buses rerouted until early Monday morning.
East Wacker Drive closed from Wabash Avenue to State Street about 8 p.m. Friday and will remain closed until 5 a.m. Monday, officials said. Wabash Avenue is closed between Wacker Drive and East Lake Street until 5 a.m. Monday.

Chicago fire and police personnel will supervise special effects and pyrotechnics, including simulated gunfire, smoke, fireballs and explosions, officials said.

During brief periods from 8a.m. until 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, helicopters will be used for aerial photography, officials said.

Transformers at SDCC Day 2

Day 2 at the 2010 San Diego Comic-Con has ended and on the Transformers front IDW held its publishing panel as the company talked about its plans for the next few months.

Highlights via TFW2005:
- Ongoing will show Hot Rod's adventures in space, which is also where Starscream and his followers happen to be so an inevitable confrontation is likely.
- The Sector Seven miniseries will focus on the organizations history and Agent Simmons family's connection to it.
- Transformers: Animated's Lockdown will make his mainstream debut in Transformers: Drift #3 (out in October) and introducing a third Transformers faction.
- The Spotlight one shots are shelved for a while but a Punch/Counterpunch mini-series is in the works.
- The 13, a miniseries mentioned more than a year ago is apparently somewhat back in play with discussions going on with Simon Furman. It doesn't sound like it is even in the scripting stage however.

Other than that, really nothing else to report. Do to filming Transformers 3, Michael Bay and company is sitting out the con which is a shame since the movie will have been released by the time the 2011 SDCC rolls around. So instead here are links to a few galleries.

Sideshow Optimus Prime | SDCC Exclusive Blaster | SDCC Toy Display

Friday, July 23, 2010

TF3 Chicago: Soundwave Spotted, More Images and Video

Transformers 3 production continues somewhere in Chicago but until more information comes in, here is more images and a video from last weekend's filming in the city. As the image to the left shows, Soundwave joins the Chicago battle, bringing the first confirmation that this Decepticon returns. The stick head is used as actor eye line and camera reference point so it seems he will also interact at some level with the human characters.

That image, and the below animated gifs and more are thanks to Pixel Rally. The gifs show off an explosion moment from in front of Hotel 71 while the other three show Bay giving instructions to Shia LaBeouf and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley who then do two practice runs of tumbling away from an overturned SUV. The full set of pictures can be found at flickr. Thanks to Kel for pointing out the Soundwaves images in the set. The set also includes two videos from filming over the last two weeks. One from is pyrotechnics going off in front of the Michigan Avenue Bridge and the other from the skydiving stunt from two weeks ago.

If interested in reading more, OK Magazine has posted a gallery of images of Josh Duhamel at work while Shia watched. Thanks to John for the link. Also the below video comes from Film Junk and shows yet another angle from the Hotel 71 intersection shoot. Sadly I have no idea what areas Transformers 3 production will be working this weekend but assume in the same general Michigan Avenue area.

Transformers: Prime and Hasbro Panels at SDCC

The San Diego Comic-Con kicked off its first full day today and Transformers held two of its official panels. One was to show off its toy plans and talk War for Cybertron and the other was to finally give a peak into their plans and designs for the new Transformers: Prime CGI cartoon. As the image on the left shows (more images here), Hasbro isn't pulling any punches in promoting the Hub network and the new cartoon.

The Hasbro panel didn't really cover any new ground, choosing to discuss War for Cybertron, the upcoming DLC and talking about the next wave of Transformers toys with the Hunt for Decepticons, Power Core Combiners and Generations lines whose information has already been released over the last several months. A summary can be found here. The slideshow of toy images from the panel can be found here. A gallery of Transformers toys on display at the con can be found here and here.

The Transformers: Prime panels were probably the more interesting of the two with the participation of Roberto Orci, Alex Kurtzman and Peter Cullen. Below are two videos, one shows off a brief video of Peter Cullen and Frank Welker at work and the second video is the test scene that gives you an idea of the CGI being developed for the series. The main reveals is the series is based on a 350 page lore book that Hasbro has. It’s not entirely clear but I got the impression from reading various summaries that the series is set in the War for Cybertron continuity and events are inspired by the movies but not exactly taking place during or after the movies. The basic idea is Transformers are in disguise on Earth more or less in the present day, ready in case the Decepticons attack. There is a human cast, but none related to the movies. The summary of the panel and a gallery of images that show off the Transformers and human cast can be found here.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

TF3 Chicago: Official Behind the Scenes Video and More

Nelson has posted the promised video that go along with his set photos and report. The video shows Bay and cast shooting a scene and later interacting with the crowd while. Thanks to Teddy for the link.

As for the picture to the left, that comes from Seibertron.com's karellan. I believe it is same blue Transformer doohickey from the Hotel 71/Trump Tower video from the other day. Usually when this kind of object is built, it means that a cast member physically interacts with it in some way (touches it, sits on it, whatever). The solid blue color is so that ILM can insert the CGI Transformers piece in its place during post-production. Basically you are looking at the foot, half foot, something of a Transformer for the movie. The site theorizes it might be part of a combiner but there is so little context it is anyone's guess.

Last are even more videos from Wacker Street this weekend. The first video from Seibertron.com is yet another angle, this time from high in the air, on the Bumblebee at the intersection scene with half that soldiers continuing to fire because couldn't hear the cut. After that we have videos from TFW2005's sannman. Six videos total (embeds and links below) they seem to show a below street level angle of the same scenes but incorporates a little bit of tank footage from before the intersection scene (at least guessing by the sounds and explosion) and shows that the firefight isn't just from the ground but soldiers in office building windows (that look a lot like the office tilting prop).

TF3 Chicago: Wednesday Filming at Wacker Drive

Even though all seems quiet in Chicago, Transformers 3 production continues just tucked out of the way to prevent traffic problems during the business days. On Wednesday that location was Upper Wacker Drive near a Chicago Tribune building. Thanks again to Colin Hinkle we have more images of the cast and crew at work including Michael Bay, Josh Duhamel and the stunt doubles for Shia and Rosie. He also compiled all his videos from the previous two weeks of filming for your enjoyment.



 
               
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