Image: Paramount Pictures

Which Transformers movie should Michael Bay have stopped at? Most fans who had to endure atrocities such as Revenge of the Fallen and The Last Knight would probably say “the first one,” and that’s a thought that even the director himself has warmed up to.

Speaking in an interview with Unilad about his latest film, Ambulance, which drops into U.S. theaters next week, Bay admitted that he had made too many Transformers movies, explaining how he had actually planned to step away from the franchise earlier. But naturally, the money was just too good.

“I made too many of them,” Bay said. “Steven Spielberg said, ‘Just stop at three’. And I said I’d stop. The studio begged me to do a fourth, and then that made a billion too. And then I said I’m gonna stop here. And they begged me again. I should have stopped. [But] they were fun to do.”

Bay also spoke a bit about the first Transformers movie, revealing that it was somewhat of a harrowing experience due to the film’s complex and revolutionary CG. In addition to countless parts that required extensive hours of rendering, lighting also served as a major challenge for the film’s visual effects artists.

“It was technology we didn’t know would work, and then it became very successful,” Bay said. “It was the first time digital effects were that highly reflective, so it broke a lot of new ground. It was a fun experience. It made more than [$709 million], that’s a lot of movie tickets and a lot of people that have seen it.”

Ambulance will be released in U.S. cinemas on April 8, 2022. The movie stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, who play two adoptive siblings that hijack an ambulance after a bank robbery. Drones were used to shoot some of Ambulance’s action sequences, which are teased in the featurette below.

Michael Bay Says He Should Have Stopped Making Transformers Movies (Unilad)

Overall, Bay’s directorial contributions to the Transformers franchise have grossed well over $4.5 billion, but the drop-off in quality is migraine-worthy.

Revenge of the Fallen, by Shia LaBeouf’s own admission, was a bit of a mess, through no major faults of their own (this was the time of the writers strike). Dark of the Moon was a relative return to form, if hobbled by Megan Fox’s absence. If Age of Extinction didn’t have Dinobots, maybe we’d have all been saved from The Last Knight, far and away one of the most incomprehensible blockbusters of the millennium. The visual effects were extraordinary though, it must be said.

In spite of billion-busting takings, even Bay believes he should have called it a day.

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4 comments

  1. Yeah, and even when he's not "making" them his name is still tied to some kind of producing credit for them. Bayformers will be here forever. I'm still dreading the upcoming Beastwars movie. I admit that I found Bumblebee to be strangely, and unexpectedly, refreshing but I get the impression that the studios did not get what made that movie endearing and have already jettisoned any of those traits in order to go back to his formula.
  2. This is the only REAL Transformers movie in my mind:

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