News: Hasbro plans 4th Transformers film, other assorted nonsense

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Hasbro is in talks with Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg to produce a fourth entry in the live-action Transformers franchise. Additionally, they are revamping the script for a movie based on the Ouija board “game” after Universal dropped the project, and plans are going forth with movies based on Micronauts, Candyland, Risk, Stretch Armstrong, Clue and Monopoly. Plus, of course, they have Battleship coming out next year.

I have a headache. I think it’s from slamming my head into the keyboard at the sheer absurdity of it all.

The third Transformers film effectively put a cap on the series, in my opinion. There aren’t a lot of things they can do with the franchise as it stands, without rebooting. I suppose they could always ape the animated movie and bring in Unicron and/or some form of Galvatron, but honestly, it would look a bit desperate. And if they’re going to continue the franchise, honestly I think I’d prefer a reboot at this point, and have somebody new take it in a new direction. While the Michael Bay films weren’t all bad, I’ve got to say I’m not enthused about the idea of another Transformers film where it’s hard to distinguish between the Transformers because they all look alike and few have enough lines to show a personality.

I suppose it would be possible to make a movie out of Stretch Armstrong, but I can’t help but think it’d be ridiculously goofy. Not that that’s inherently bad, but I’m just picturing them casting Owen Wilson in a wacky action comedy! with exactly that inept comedic tone throughout the whole process. You know that they’d either get him, or someone like him for it. Maybe Ryan Reynolds as a best-case scenario, and that’s not a very good case.

Micronauts is at least plausible as a film property, but I can’t say I have any emotional attachment to the franchise. I don’t think many people do, either. It might work, but they’ll have an uphill battle drawing an audience. Candyland, if they handle it right, will be an acceptable if insipid movie for the under-6 crowd (and absolutely unbearable to everyone else). I can see why they’d want to do it, but I can’t see why a studio would go for it. Besides, even your typical six-year-old gets bored with Candyland because it doesn’t pose enough of an intellectual challenge, and that’s before they can even spell “intellectual challenge”.

With the other projects, it seems like most of them would inevitably be “in name only” movies. There’s probably no way to make, for example, a Risk movie that is distinctively Risk and not just a war movie they slapped the Risk label on. As such, most of them will be good or bad entirely based on the concepts brought to the script. But given the starting points, I can’t hold out much hope (and the absurdity that Battleship is shaping up to be just bears this out.) Granted, Clue already has a movie, and that was fantastic. But all that means is that for this new Clue they’re going to be drawing comparisons to a movie they can’t possibly hope to equal. Just seems like a bad idea all around.

The interesting thing is, the very base concepts could possibly be adapted into decent movies, I just have no faith in their ability to do it, or their willingness to cut out potential sections of the audience in order to put the film in the genre it needs to be in. Risk will no doubt be a fairly brainless war action movie, with some charismatic soldiers fighting a single mission in a localized battlefield, but it would probably fit better as a military drama set in the war room instead of the front lines. Ouija would almost have to be a horror film, and while there’s more bad than good in the genre anyway, it’s unlikely to be a good horror film if they don’t go for the “R” rating — which seems unlikely for a toy company. I’m not sure what would work for Monopoly (minus a transparent Wall Street clone), but I’ve no doubt that what they’ll be going with is some sort of romantic comedy based on Rich Uncle Pennybags leaving somebody a fortune in real estate.

And, of course, Clue is already perfect. So they’ll probably just do a very weak copy of that.

About Morgan R. Lewis

Fan of movies and other media
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12 Responses to News: Hasbro plans 4th Transformers film, other assorted nonsense

  1. osagejake says:

    I hate Hollywood right now. NO one seems to have the ability to come up with a GOOD and ORIGINAL movie idea and script. For the most part, the recent slate of movies, i.e. the last 10-15 years, have been pretty much boring and uninteresting. They try and make up for it with expensive special effects, which usually suck, or now, 3D, which doesn’t add anything to the experience but a headache.

    • For what little it’s worth, this, at least, isn’t originating from Hollywood. It’s always possible the movie studios will react like Universal did to Ouija and say “no” to Hasbro’s ideas. Especially in the (rather likely) event that Battleship bombs.

      • Hasbro has some games that could be made into good movies. None are listed above.

        Betrayal at House on the Hill (horror)
        Axis & Allies (WWII)
        Magic: The Gathering (fantasy)
        Battle Cry (Civil War)
        Monsters Menace America (exactly what it sounds like)
        The Mating Game (porn)

        • Some of those could be plausible, though I’m not sure Axis & Allies would really work out better than Risk. I have to say the one that sounds most appealing would be Monsters Menace America… that could be some cheesy fun.

  2. Any new Clue movie would fail because it can’t have Madeline Khan.

  3. I seem to recall reading somewhere that Shia LaBeouf was finished with the Transformers film. I could be mistaken, but if I’m not, it would really be a shame to continue on the franchise without him (…or at all).

    Don’t get me wrong, I like the Transformers films, but it would be a repeat of what is happening with the Spider-man films; I loved those movies, but I have no interest in watching the “revamped” fourth film, which is not starring Toby Maguire.

    Sometimes people take things too far… 😛

    • Yeah, it’s my understanding that LeBeouf is finished with the franchise. Of course, they could always try throwing money at him if they do want to continue it. Granted, I wasn’t a big fan of the way the human element was handled in the films, but that was a central part of them so without LeBeouf they’re pretty much obliged to take a new direction.

    • Isn’t it dumb of “The Beef” to drop these movies? Someone should put him in touch with Tobey McGuire so he can talk about life post-Spider-Man.

      • On the one hand, I agree that it’s kind of dumb to bow out of the franchise that made you a household name. On the other hand, it’s not a very good role to get stuck in; unlike Spider-Man, it’s a character that isn’t well-written, so even if LeBeouf can develop into a good actor (he wouldn’t be the first to start off doofy) he’s probably not going to do so while he’s spending most of his effort on that franchise, and he’s certainly not going to get any respect while he’s still starring in Transformers. I mean, part of the problem for Tobey Maguire is that in all his subsequent roles people keep expecting to see Peter Parker. Now imagine how much of a lead weight being thought of as “Sam Witwicky” is. If he’s going to get out from under that, it might be now or never.

        Of course, the franchise actor I really feel sorry for is Daniel Radcliffe. Even if he keeps acting into old age and becomes one of the greatest thespians of our time, he’s still going to be “Harry Potter” before “Daniel Radcliffe” in the public’s eye.

        • I agree. The poor fella has stepped into some really interesting and very “un-Harry-ish” roles to try and express himself as an actor, but even something like “Equus” wasn’t enough to make us think of him as anyone other than Harry Potter.

          Hopefully he’ll consider that a compliment to how strongly he drew us in, and not as a slap in the face for his other acting roles… :p

  4. Pingback: News: Universal Just Not That Into Hasbro | Morgan on Media

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