2014 is going to be a big year for Michael Bay, who has “Transformers 4” with Mark Wahlberg on tap for next year, and will be producing the “Ninja Turtles” reboot (directed by “Battle: L.A.’s” Jonathan Liebesman), also in the pipe for 2014.
While out promoting his latest, the relatively low-budget “Pain and Gain” (also with Wahlberg), Bay was of course asked about both “Transformers 4” and “Ninja Turtles”. The director was very frank about both projects, and it could very well be that I’ve never heard him say it, but he dismisses previous rumors that had the turtles being aliens, telling Moviefone:
There was that quote saying that we’re making [the Ninja Turtles as] aliens. We’re not. It’s the ooze! It’s from the original source material. These are from the original writers, and I never went out to correct myself in the press. I do listen to the fans and I do want this to be authentic. I think they’re going to be really happy with this movie. When I see the digital stuff, the turtles look great.
I personally don’t care if the Turtles are aliens or if they were mutated by ooze. What’s the difference? They’re ninja turtles. It’s like getting mad that the “Transformers” movies don’t have Oscar-caliber screenplays. Really?
Speaking of “Transformers 4”, Bay comes pretty clean about why he decided to return to do a fourth one after being pretty adamant that he was done with the franchise. In a word: ego. You sorta knew that, didn’t you?
Yeah, and this is literally a true story. I went to the [Transformers] ride in Universal, and there’s a two-and-a-half-hour line, and you just see all these kids — it’s the most popular ride they’ve had since Jurassic Park — and I’m like… It’s hard to let go of your franchise. You don’t want someone to f*ck it up. So I at least wanted to set it up on some good footing. Because you’re going to get a different kind of director [who is] not going to want to follow in my footsteps. Directors feel very territorial. So they’re going to go to a more inexperienced director. It’s just the way Hollywood works. And I’m thinking, “God, so I’ll redesign it, set it up… Someone’s gonna f*ck this up. This is way too big of a thing.” And I’m looking at all these kids and I’m like, “F*ck, I gotta do one more.” And then I brought Mark [Wahlberg] into it. So now we’ve got a movie star, we’ve got full redesigns. At least it’ll be on good footing.
Exactly what kind of “redesigns” is he talking about? He elaborates a bit:
You know there are a couple of historians of Transformers. I would do my designs of the robots and they’re like, “What if you just add a little bit more ears to Optimus?” But they’re really hands off. We’ve redesigned them in “Transformers 4,” and there’s some really cool sh*t in it. I’m literally redesigning every character, top to bottom. There’s a reason why they’re redesigned, but it’s also to keep it new and fresh to me. I think the fans will appreciate some of this new stuff we have in the movie and some of the new characters.
So there you have it, Bay on “Transformers 4” and “Ninja Turtles”. Look for both films in 2014.
And if you’re not a fan, then, well, don’t look for them? I honestly don’t know what else to tell ya. If this guy doesn’t appeal to you, just don’t, you know, pay money to see his stuff. That’ll learn’em.