A Long Future For Transformers

Paramount Studios and Transformers 1-4 director Michael Bay have a great relationship. For Paramount, Bay hands over a big splashy blockbuster every few years that is pretty much guaranteed a billion dollars before toys, video games, t-shirts, posters and the rest are added on. For Bay, he gets a sizable cut of this pie and the freedom to pursue smaller projects like 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi and Pain and Gain in the interim. Win-win.

There does come a point to call it a day on a mega-franchise like this. The time is soon for Bay, as he was coaxed back to do a Shia Labeof-less Transformers: Age of Extinction a few years back. For the next installment, Transformers 5, Bay is adamant this will be his finale.

And while it may be Bay’s exit from the series the uber-success of Star Wars and Marvel have prompted Paramount to explore other options. After the laughably terrible Battleship the shared universe of Hasbro Games seemed to be nixed to the core films. Until Stars Wars‘ leapfrogging scheme came along.

Star Wars will release one core film (aka one with a number in it) every second year. The gap year will be occupied by spinoffs like Rogue One (A Beginner’s Guide to Destroying Death Star I) and adventures with Han Solo and Bobba Fett earlier in their time stream. This sounds like something Transformers can do.

TRANSFORMERS, Optimus Prime, 2007. ©Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection

The spinoff movie? Habro’s Tom Warner said:

“This summer we worked closely with a talented team of A-list screenwriters to map out the future of the Transformers cinematic universe, and as [was] announced earlier, things kick off in a major way in 2017 with the release of Transformers 5 in June. And we’re working on a spin-off movie centered around Bumblebee for 2018 and the next chapter for 2019.”

To recap:

TRANSFORMERS 5: THE FINAL BAY will be released June 23rd, 2017

BUMBLEBEE: WILL THEY FIX HIS VOICE BOX FOR THIS? will be released in 2018, probably the same time.

TRANSFORMERS 6: BAY-LESS will certainly be June 2019.

Annual releases are scary-difficult. Some work and some do not, though the folks at Hasbro seem to have put a lot of thought into their gargantuan franchise. More as we know it.

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