Home Entertainment Michael Bay will hand over TRANSFORMERS movies to another director

Michael Bay will hand over TRANSFORMERS movies to another director

3 min read


Whether you love him, hate him or refer to him as Hitler after he’s made you a superstar, there’s no denying that Michael Bay has cracked this blockbuster code. Look no further than his latest directorial effort, the fourth film in the Transformers franchise, to see just how insane Bay’s box-office Midas touch has become. Despite being brutally savaged by critics and half of the internet, Transformers: Age of Extinction had the biggest opening weekend of the year, is the biggest overall earner of the year with a tally of just over $1 billion, and is currently ranked as the 9th biggest box office earner of all time.

So yeah, (at least when it comes to commercial success) Bay is definitely at the top of his gratuitously explosive game. But the view of the top is seemingly getting a bit boring, as Bay has revealed during an interview with USA Today that despite all that success, he is planning to hand over the directorial reins of the Transformers franchise to somebody else, while he starts tackling new endeavours. This is something that he actually spoke about doing before production on Transformers: Age of Extinction – which is the start of a new trilogy in the franchise – but this time, he apparently means it.

Bay, 49, believes he will pass the baton for future Transformer movies to a new director while he turns his focus elsewhere.

“There’s kind of a new chapter, a new direction in movies I want to make,” says Bay, who is eyeing a passion project, a documentary on elephant poaching. “I have a lot of stories to tell. And it’s about flexing new muscles.”

Yes, elephant poaching. Bay has been dabbling in the TV space as well recently, producing ABC’s The Last Ship (which I admit has become a bit of a guilty pleasure) and Starz’s Black Sails (which is made right here in Cape Town), both of which have been ratings successes. So with that small screen success, and with such uncharacteristic, patchy experiments as last year’s Pain & Gain, it’s not surprising that Bay feels the need to branch out now that he’s pretty much achieved whatever he’s wanted to achieve with big screen blockbusters.


So who would take over from Bay? The current obvious choice would be Jonathan Liebesman, who has just directed the Bay produced Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and is sort of his protégé. He’s even followed so closely in his mentor’s footsteps that he made a movie that was almost universally trashed by critics, but then pulled in $65 million domestically on its opening weekend and already has a sequel greenlit. His directorial style will also make for a fairly seamless transition to the next few chapters in the Transformers series, which is what I’m guessing the studios will want as they clearly already have a winning formula here that they wouldn’t want to upset in any way.

I’ve always maintained that Bay is not a talentless director (please see: Bad Boys and The Rock). His biggest problems are his habit of copying himself over and over again, and completely eradicating the word restraint from his vocabulary. Given the right material to work with, and an actual honest to goodness, well written script instead of just a powerpoint presentation of CGI explosions, I will be very interested to see what Bay could do.


Last Updated: August 13, 2014


  1. Rinceable

    August 13, 2014 at 08:47

    Nothing wrong with The Last Ship! *Cough


    • Alien Emperor Trevor

      August 13, 2014 at 11:25

      Cough? PLAGUE! I mean… what’s The Last Ship?


  2. Kromas of City17

    August 13, 2014 at 09:22

    YAY! Now please hand over TMNT wile you are at it.


    • James Francis

      August 13, 2014 at 10:20

      But he didn’t direct it…


      • Kromas of City17

        August 13, 2014 at 10:28

        Don’t care. He should not be involved in anything that has even a remote possibility of being a reboot.

        I am fine with his work on stuff like Bad Boys but I state once again that he should not have anything to do with Marvel/DC/Comics/80’s/90’s culture.


        • James Francis

          August 13, 2014 at 10:51

          Bay helped create the blueprint for the 21st century pop culture blockbuster. I doubt Marvel would have gained the investment and industry traction it did for big projects like The Avengers without Bay’s work setting the culture and tone for that. If you think the likes of Abrams and Whedon are superior to Bay’s experience and ability, you are really kidding yourself. Give the man the props he deserves.


          • Kromas of City17

            August 13, 2014 at 11:07

            I disagree. Marvel Gained traction due to the increased popularity of alternative culture in the mainstream thanks to the likes of Lord of the rings and even the Matrix. They pretty much cemented that fact by producing Iron Man and the rest as we know it is history. All I am saying is that bay has his place and it is not in the reboot genre. Also why mention Abrams? He annoyes me almost as much. Now if you mentioned Whedon alone being superior I would say … yeah he pretty much is. 🙂

          • James Francis

            August 13, 2014 at 11:12

            Well,at least we have established that your opinion is based on bias, not fact.

          • Kromas of City17

            August 13, 2014 at 11:13

            PC MASTER RACE FTW! … oh wait wrong site…..

            WHEDON FTW!


          • James Francis

            August 13, 2014 at 11:18

            I was referring to how you can include LOTR and Matrix, but exclude Transformers as the forces that shaped today’s pop culture movies. That is some impressive selective logic. Try squinting at that forest- you’ll find it has trees…

          • Kromas of City17

            August 13, 2014 at 11:22

            Oh well. Easy enough to explain. I was referencing something older than a few years cause shaping 21st century pop culture blockbusters should not ever reference something so new. Matrix (1999) and LoTR (2001) came our wel well before Tranformers (2009 or somewhere there abouts)

          • James Francis

            August 13, 2014 at 11:27

            2007, actually. Yes, it came later. But it still served as a solid demonstration of the hunger for films based on pop culture. So while the role may have been lesser, it can’t be discounted as completely as you’d like. You may dislike Bay, but he shares way more DNA with the likes of Marvel’s films than you seem to appreciate.

            If that disgusts you, don’t forget that you are lauding films about mutants with powers and bodybuilders in spandex. You are not exactly defending high culture here in the first place. And Bay is part and parcel of the new blockbuster era.

          • Kromas of City17

            August 13, 2014 at 11:32

            You must have me mistaken. I like Bay. The Rock and Armageddon are my go to movies to rewatch if I want skop skiet en donner. HOWEVER every single movie he made that has any sort of history be it true or fantasy has been a horrible nightmare for me to watch no matter how hot I think Megan Fox is. This opnly applies to those movies. So stop making Pearl Harbors and Transformers and such and make more movies like Pain and Gain (now that is how bay should be)

          • James Francis

            August 13, 2014 at 11:35

            Your initial point is that you want him removed from pop culture films. My point is that he is a fundamental cog in that machine. So your hopes are wishful at the best of times and you are not giving proper credence to the forces that shaped today’s blockbuster market.

          • Rinceable

            August 13, 2014 at 11:28

            Whedon you beauty!

  3. James Francis

    August 13, 2014 at 10:21

    I’m surprised he hadn’t done so before. As the many things he had produced reveal, Bay is never far from the director’s chair when he’s involved in a project. A bit like Putin always rules Russia, regardless of who is officially in charge.


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