In an interview with the Huffington Post to promote his Doritos contest, Michael Bay discussed his upcoming movie Pain & Gain and provided a few more details about Transformers 4 including why he returned to the franchise and when it is set. The full interview is here.
- Movie set after Transformers: Dark of the Moon
- Peter Cullen will be back as the voice of Optimus Prime
- No indication on what other character may return (be really surprised if Bumblebee didn't)
Transformers relevant part:
And the [Doritos contest] winner gets to "work with" you on "Transformers 4." What does that mean?
It's not going to be doing my laundry. They're going to be working on the set in some capacity.
That would be disappointing if they won and, after all that, wound up doing your laundry.
No, no, no. It's a good opportunity for someone to really see how it's done. When I was young, aspiring to do what I did, I would have killed for something like this. There's nothing better than real-life experience.
Why do you want to do it? I was under the impression that you were done after "Transformers 3"?
I thought I was done. Then the ride came out [at Universal Studios Hollywood] and the two-and-a-half-hour lines. And then you're thinking, Oh my God, someone's going to take this over. And you start doing a lot of soul-searching. Like, OK, I'm about to do a little movie, "Pain & Gain" ... and the studio says they want to restart the franchise. And someone could come in here and screw it up, you know? So I'm thinking that if I do this last one, we set it on a new footing, we change a lot of things -- but we keep the history of the three in place. But we broaden it so it can be set up and be carried on -- it would have a better chance for survival, I guess. You know?
So it was just one of those things. It's like, when you look what's going on in the film business with the franchise frenzy right now, why is Cameron doing two more "Avatar" movies? Why is Peter Jackson doing three more "Hobbit" movies that are in the same world as "Lord of the Rings"? When you have a franchise, it's very hard to give it up.
So with the plot of "Transformers 4," it's not like the other three movies didn't happen? It's not a reboot?
No. We're basically taking from the history of where it was -- or where we left it in Chicago. And we're going to carry it on from there.
I spoke to Peter Cullen at Comic Con earlier this year. He said he doesn't know if he's going to be back as the voice of Optimus Prime or not. He'll be back, right?
Of course! Of course.
But if you got rid of Peter Cullen, people would be extremely upset.
Listen, when I heard his voice, it gave me chills.
Do you still feel that way? That people don't believe in you, as far as a smaller movie is concerned?
They wanted me to do something bigger. There are not a lot of people who do these big movies. So that's why you have to twist their arm a little bit to do this. So I basically said, "All right, I'll do 'Transformers 4,' we'll do this little movie -- we'll do both."
Is that how it happened? That was the deal?
Well, it's kind of like a little bit here and there, you know? They would have done it. [Paramount chairman] Brad Grey says, "We'll make whatever you want."
But it helps that you're doing the fourth "Transformers"?
But it's also that I'm friends with the people at the studio. It's exactly like I said: it's just from the heart. You don't want to leave "Transformers" in bad hands. Do you know what I'm saying? So we can set it up in the right way so it can kind of continue on.