The idea there will be a Transformers 4 isn't news to anyone. You don't have a franchise that makes $1,073,748,606 domestically, another $1,596,011,863 internationally, not to mention the sales for video games, toys, lunch boxes and whatever the hell else there is to market and not make a fourth film. Speaking of which, did you know Transformers: Dark of the Moon made $771,356,453 internationally? The other two films combined made only $53.2 million more at the international market. I never realized it was that big overseas.
Nevertheless, we all generally agree we expected a fourth film. I think we all also realize Shia Labeouf has pretty much run his course at the center of the story, but how many of us felt Michael Bay was done directing these things?
Back in December, Bay posted on his official forums a message saying, "Studio's are passing rumors [about my involvement in Transformers 4] but I'm not sure what I'm doing? I know I'm going to do Pain and Gain early spring but that's it for right now. I'm leaving all my options on the table. I've got several Studio meetings in the next two weeks."
We now know what came as a result of those meetings.
Bay just posted on his official website the following message:
I have just concluded a deal with Paramount to do two movies, but it won't be two Transformers.
I will first do 'Pain & Gain' with Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson.
Then I will do the next Transformers for release on June 29, 2014.
This post comes as a result of news making the rounds from Transformers producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura who began speaking out today telling MTV, "Michael [Bay]'s going to direct [Transformers 4]. It will be in the summer of 2014."
As far as what the film will be, he added:
"No, it's so silly. We gotta get a story first. You can't pick characters until you have a story. It's a funny thing, it's not... what I perceive Spider-Man to be is just a redoing of the whole thing. It's not [that]. It's an evolution, there's still continuity that's going on. There'll be a lot of new cast, whether there's anyone from the first we don't even know yet. The truth is, there's going to be a whole new story. The characters that will come along will be Optimus and Bumblebee, I'm sure."
Bay's next film, as he said, will be Pain and Gain, a smaller film for the big budget director based on a 1999 Miami New Times article, which will follow a couple of criminal bodybuilders involved in an extortion ring and a kidnapping plot.
Previous word was that Dwayne Johnson had signed on as one of the film's two leads while Wahlberg was said to have passed on the co-starring role. Bay's message begs to differ as Wahlberg clearly will be in the movie. Ed Harris is also rumored to be attached as a private detective who is hired to go after the bodybuilders. Harris previously starred in The Rock for Bay in 1996.
So there you have it, expect Pain and Gain most likely in 2013 and Transformers 4 in 2014. Now check out the Oscar visual effects reel for Transformers: Dark of the Moon.