The Bumblebee solo film has officially begun production. After numerous installments culminating with the widely dejected Transformers: The Last Knight, the franchise is about to see it’s first spinoff film with the aptly titled ‘Bumblebee‘. Director Travis Knight (Kubo and the Two Strings) is set to make his live action debut with Bumblebee, and stars Hailee Steinfeld in the lead role. The film is set to be a period piece, taking place in 1980’s. Principal photography has officially begun, and will shoot entirely in California.
Here’s the official synopsis of the plot:
On the run in the year 1987, Bumblebee finds refuge in a junkyard in a small Californian
beach town. Charlie (Steinfeld), on the cusp of turning 18 and trying to find her place in the world, discovers Bumblebee, battle-scarred and broken. When Charlie revives him, she quickly learns this is no ordinary yellow VW bug.
In addition to Steinfeld as Charlie, the film will also star John Cena, Pamela Aldon, Stephen Schenider, Jorge Lendeborg Jr., Jason Drucker, Kenneth Choi, Ricardo Hoyos, Abby Quinn, Rachel Crow, and Grace Dzienny. Their roles have yet to be specified.
Although Michael Bay’s signature stamp will be long lasting on the franchise, my god is it a breath of fresh air to see someone else get the opportunity to helm one of these movies. The casting of John Cena is certainly unexpected, but seems perfect when you consider the fun loving nature of the title character combined within the backdrop from which these characters were created.
It’s been no secret that the Paramount is seeking to expand the franchise in the future. Paramount CEO Brad Grey recently expressed his enthusiasm about all of the potential for the Transformers spinoff
projects currently in development: “There are characters in the Transformers universe that can be and should be made into their own movies,” adding that “We’ve brought in a pretty strong writing staff run by Akiva Goldsman, and they have put together eight or nine interesting stories,” said Grey. “So, between that group and Steven Spielberg’s guidance on a story level, these characters are a big business for us to pursue.”
Bumblebee is perhaps the most popular character from the franchise (with the exception of Optimus Prime), so it makes sense that it would be the first Transformers spinoff film to hit theaters would be his. But as the first film in the franchise to be have a winter release date of December 21, 2018 — as well as a lower budget than any of the other movies — it should be interesting to see how ‘Bumblebee’ fairs within a packed Christmas release slate.
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