Michael Bay and M. Night Shyamalan in the same post – clearly it’s Monday and this week is off to a fantastic start…
Bay and Shyamalan are back in the news – Bay for his regularly scheduled discussion of how he wasn’t sure he wanted to make another Transformers film (but finally caved when he thought about the swimming pool full of cash he’d miss out on if he passed…) and Shyamalan with the threat that he’s about to make another movie. Does life get any better than this?
The Huffington Post caught up with Bay recently and the filmmaker shared his thought process when it comes to why he returned to direct a fourth installment in the giant-morphing-robots franchise he helped launch. While part of the answer is unintentionally hilarious, we’ll give him props for never saying “it was because they offered me more money than I could ever possibly spend.”
“I thought I was done. Then the ride came out [at Universal Studios Hollywood] and the two-and-a-half-hour lines. And then you’re thinking, oh my God, someone’s going to take this over. And you start doing a lot of soul-searching. Like, OK, I’m about to do a little movie, Pain & Gain… and the studio says they want to restart the franchise. And someone could come in here and screw it up, you know?”
The unintentionally hilarious part I was talking about earlier lies in that very last sentence. I’m sure there are plenty of older Transformers fans who believe that Bay has screwed the franchise up enough already…
Bay goes on to add that modern Hollywood is so franchise obsessed that it’s hard to walk away from one. He says this is why Cameron’s doing more Avatar sequels and Peter Jackson has returned to Middle-Earth. It’s as if Bay’s saying “those guys are doing it, so I might as well too."
To be fair, the director does seem genuinely concerned about the legacy of what he’s created. He explains “So I’m thinking that if I do this last one, we set it on a new footing, we change a lot of things — but we keep the history of the three in place. But we broaden it so it can be set up and be carried on — it would have a better chance for survival, I guess. You know?”
We’d say it sounds like Transformers 4 will be the end of the line for Bay – but we’ve heard that song before.
In other news, M. Might Shyamalan is apparently gearing up for another film – just insert your own jokes here.
Fansite MNightFans (yeah, we were shocked to learn there was a Shyamalan fan site, too) caught a recent tweet from the director and it has everyone speculating about what the filmmaker will do next.
Shyamalan, who’s looking to resuscitate his career with the upcoming Will Smith vehicle After Earth, said the following on Twitter: “Deciding between 3 [projects]. One I’ve already written and 2 that are just in outline form. They are all fighting in my heart right now.”
No one knows for sure what these three projects are, but many are guessing the completed script is a sequel to Shyamalan’s critically drubbed The Last Airbender. The director had reported completing a first draft of a script for a sequel back in 2010.
Of course, the real question is this: who would allow Shyamalan to make a sequel to The Last Airbender? While the film took a beating from critics, it did eventually earn over $300 million in global box office – meaning Paramount might be open to the idea of a sequel. However, that hardly means Shyamalan would be a lock to direct it. In fact, that’s probably the worst thing that could happen. If Paramount wants to take another crack at the series, they’d be far smarter to hire a less expensive director – and one who's not such a potential lightning rod for controversy amongst the fanbase.
This is all speculation, though. We have no real idea what the finished script is – it could be The Last Airbender 2, but it could just as easily be something we’ve never heard of. Plus, one of the two other projects might win the war in Shyamalan’s heart. It’s just too early to tell, so don’t start panicking yet.
Needless to say, we’ll be bringing you more on Transformers 4 and whatever Shyamalan decides to do next (I’m really hoping it’s The Sixth Sense 2: The Seventh Sense – The Deadening. The twist is that someone you think was a ghost for the entire film is actually alive!) in the months ahead.