Transformers: Dark of the Moon kicked off an early 4th of July weekend at the box office under a hail storm of bad reviews and shouts that it was making far less money than its predecessor Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. By the time the weekend was over, though, this news had been spun in a more positive direction with the Michael Bay directed sequel breaking various IMAX records. And quite a few red-blooded American audience members claiming an affinity for it despite what the hateful Bay-loathing critics had to say.
Its now considered a mammoth hit, and various Hollywood insiders guarantee a fourth film is in the pipeline. Leading man, Shia LaBeouf, is not coming back, though, with Sam Witwicky's storyline wrapped. And Michael Bay has also said that this is the final chapter in his personal Transformers trilogy. So where does that leave those robots-in-disguise?
Well, according to Tyrese Gibson, it's possible that executive producer Steven Spielberg will sign onto direct the next installment. And if we are to believe the rumblings this afternoon coming out of Hollywood, Jason Statham is being lined up as the franchise's next leading man.
Insiders claim that Jason Statham will be able to take this saga into darker territory, and the fact that he is engaged to franchise newcomer Rosie Huntington-Whiteley is a plus.
"It's clear the franchise still has huge potential but with a new leading man capable of taking Transfomers 4 in a new, darker direction. Jason Statham could be just the man to do that and his relationship with Rosie would be an added bonus in marketing the movie."
Is Jason Statham the right man for the job? Transfomers is first and foremost a kids' movie. How dark does it need to be, and do nine-year-olds really care about the off-screen relationship between Jason Statham and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley? The ones who read People Magazine on the toilet probably do.