Can Transformers work without Michael Bay?

Posted by David Konow

It seems as if more Transformers movies are on the way, even though Michael Bay swore he was done with the franchise forever. 



Although many people can’t stand the controversial Bay - good, bad or indifferent - he does have his own unique style of filmmaking, and Transformers may not fly without it. 



Can Transformers work without Bay?Then again, maybe fresh blood is what the franchise could use, although a lot of times without the original creative people, subsequent movies can definitely suffer. (Think Jaws post Spielberg, and X-Men without Bryan Singer.) 



And if the movies are turned over to another hack, like say Brett Ratner or McG, it’s dead where it stands. Remember, Transformers also had the good luck of hitting the generation that grew up with them as they were growing nostalgic for the toys - and they came out in droves to support the film.

But Transformers isn’t the only franchise Hasbro is eyeing. No, the company also wants to get Micronauts off the ground, with Zombieland writers Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese coming on board to pen the script for JJ Abrams’s Bad Robot production company at Paramount.

It’s tough to say if Micronauts can be something new and exciting, or just a tired Transformers rehash. It obviously depends on the script, director, cast and story concept. 

It also worth noting that Hasbro is busy with Stretch Armstrong, Candyland, Risk, Monopoly (directed by Ridley Scott) and the upcoming Battleship. 



TranformersThe latter film has already stirred up a lot of Internet debate considering it cost a ton of money, and Universal dumped a lot of projects that were potentially more interesting, like The Dark Tower franchise and Guillermo Del Toro’s At the Mountains of Madness.



In addition, Hasbro is hoping to revive Oujia on a lower budget. (Disney ditched the project over budget concerns, just as they almost axed Lone Ranger when potential costs went well over $200 million.)

And right as I was wrapping up this blog post up, Deadline reports there’s a Gigantor movie in the works, with rap video director Bryan Barber owning the rights for everything: the film, merchandise and video games. 



He’s apparently pitching it as "Transformers meets Goonies," and with the box office success of Real Steel, giant robots are clearly still a hot property. It’s like Usual Suspects screenwriter Christopher McQuarrie once told Creative Screenwriting, Hollywood always tries to jump on the ship they just missed.
 
With all these projects, there’s huge potential "synergy" as they say in Hollywood, to sell a ton of toys to add to the box office money pile. Indeed, Hasbro’s third quarter profits went up 10% with $46.3 million in licensing, thanks to the success of Transformers 3.