‘Bumblebee’ Spinoff Rounds Out Cast With A Handful Of Fresh Faces — Can A Solo Film Transform The Franchise?

The monster money machine that is Paramount’s Transformers franchise hopes to continue its ridiculously successful run at the box office with its upcoming slate of prequels and spinoffs that will form the Transformers Cinematic Universe.

Despite the latest installment of the series, The Last Knight, failing to achieve the same financial feats as its predecessors, the franchise as a whole has totaled over $3 billion which indicates the audience that does adore the Michael Bay-powered depiction of robotic violence adores it hard.

The upcoming Bumblebee will kick start the TCU (rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?) and we now have the names of the young cast that will lead the spinoff. THR reports Jason Drucker (Diary of a Wimpy Kid), Abby Quinn (Landline), Rachel Crow (Rio 2), Ricardo Hoyos (Degrassi: Next Class) and Gracie Dzienny (Zoo) are all in various stages of negotiations. While these names may not necessarily be cause for celebration, others who are involved in the production and the rumored plot details of the film definitely generates some sense of intrigue… As much intrigue as a Transformers spinoff may ever generate.

transformers gif bumblebee
Credit: Paramount Pictures

‘Bumblebee’ Has The Power To Successfully Usher In A New Audience For Transformers

When it comes to the past decade of Michael Bay’s “critic-proof” Transformers films, I haven’t been a fan myself, however I do enjoy hearing the sheer joy it brings to many moviegoers. Although the financial performance by The Last Knight certainly isn’t terrible, audiences may be growing tired of witnessing the same bombastic visual junk (with little focus on having any sort of emotional core) that the franchise has become infamous for. Even those who voice their disdain for the Transformers franchise the most may admit the first installment with Shia LaBeouf and Megan Fox wasn’t that bad. Truly the relationships depicted between the otherworldly metallic species appealed more to certain audience members than any of the human characters.

Among the previously mentioned bunch, the Bumblebee prequel/spinoff will also star Jorge Lendeborg Jr. and most notably, the incredibly talented Hailee Steinfeld who exceeded all expectations in last year’s Edge Of Seventeen. As we’ve seen time and time again, a great cast is never a promise for an equally great movie (as evidenced by Sir Anthony Hopkins whose wallet miraculously wandered its way into the latest Transformers). As there are a number of new talents sprinkled throughout Bumblebee, expectations for the film will be lowered drastically since audiences will now be happy if the new cast simply doesn’t suck. The addition of Steinfeld is a major advantage for those interested in her phenomenal work and hope to see her in a big budget blockbuster.

edge of seventeen gif
Credit: STX Entertainment

The director for the film is frankly why I’m as excited as I am. Travis Knight’s directorial debut was last year’s criminally under-appreciated Kubo And The Two Strings – an example of an “original” movie people clamor for yet never take the time out to watch it because it’s an original property. Besides all the brilliant components of that stop motion picture, what Knight managed to accomplish with the emotional aspect of Kubo and its enchanting world made it as great as it was, hopefully that brilliance is able to be captured in Bumblebee.

Plot details have not been released officially yet, however the rumored details surrounding it sounds next to perfect – Bumblebee will serve as a prequel to the main film series and focus on Bumblebee’s life during the 1980s. The film will follow Steinfeld’s character and a group of her friends as they team up to help Bumblebee. Watching a straight prequel for one of the greatest autobots in the franchise set during an exhilarating time period with a (hopefully) talented young cast? Call me crazy but sign me up!

Bumblebee is slated for a June 8th, 2018 release and if it does well, expect 14 more Transformers spinoffs that will most likely range from When Optimus Prime Visited The DMV to Mr. Magorium’s Robotic Testicle Emporium.

(Source: The Hollywood Reporter)

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