Just a few days ago, Paramount and Hasbro handed out release dates for the next three additions in the Transformers franchise, Michael Bay's Transformers 5 (June 23, 2017), a currently untitled Bumblebee spinoff (June 8, 2018) and Transformers 7 (June 28, 2019). While we have known about Transformers 5 for quite some time, Friday's announcement was the first we'd heard of Transformers 6: Bumblebee. The Hollywood Reporter spoke with Paramount chairman Brad Grey, who teased that the Bumblebee spinoff will cost way less than the upcoming Transformers 5.
"There are characters in the Transformers universe that can be and should be made into their own movies. We will make the first movie with Michael and go right into a Bumblebee movie, which will be at a lower cost."
The Paramount executive wouldn't specify what kind of budget that Transformers 6: Bumblebee will be working with, or how it would compare to Transformers 5. While no budget figures have been released for Transformers 5 yet, it's worth noting that the last Transformers movie, 2014's Transformers: Age of Extinction, cost $210 million to produce. It ended up taking in $245.4 million domestically and a whopping $858.6 million internationally for a global box office tally of $1.1 billion. It was the only movie to cross the $1 billion milestone in 2014. Brad Grey also spoke about the writer's room the studio put together last summer, teasing they have eight or nine movie ideas to work with.
"We've brought in a pretty strong writing staff run by Akiva Goldsman, and they have put together eight or nine interesting stories. So, between that group and Steven Spielberg's guidance on a story level, these characters are a big business for us to pursue."
The writer's room was lead by Akiva Goldsman, and also included Steven S. DeKnight (Daredevil), Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead), Art Marcum & Matt Holloway (Iron Man), Zak Penn (Pacific Rim 2), Jeff Pinkner (The Amazing Spider-Man 2), Andrew Barrer and Gabriel Ferrari (Ant-Man), Christina Hodson, Lindsey Beers, Ken Nolan and Geneva Robertson-Dorsett. Michael Bay helped oversee the writers room, along with Steven Spielberg, Hasbro's Brian Goldner and producers Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Mark Vahradian and Don Murphy.
Transformers 5 will be written by Ken Nolan and the writing team of Art Marcum & Matt Holloway. They took over the writing duties from Akiva Goldsman, who was originally set to write Transformers 5 himself, but he was brought on to oversee new writers rooms for G.I. Joe 3 and Micronauts, making him unavailable to write Transformers 5. We reported earlier this month that Transformers 5 will start production in May. One of the other projects developed in the writers room is an animated spinoff called Transformers One, but it isn't known when that movie will move forward. As for the Bumblebee spinoff, it isn't known who is writing or directing that project yet, but we'll be sure to keep you posted. Are you looking forward to these new Transformers movies, including the Bumblebee spinoff?