A few weeks ago, I wrote a rant about how Paramount was reportedly planning on creating a shared cinematic universe for the Transformers films under the creative control of Batman & Robin screenwriter Akiva Goldsman. It was still just rumored at that point, but according to a shareholder call from Hasbro that took place earlier today, it's now been confirmed as their strategy moving forward.
ComingSoon has the relevant quotes:
“Our plan right now with the studio and filmmakers, you may have read something about some writers being hired,” Brian Goldner, President and CEO of Hasbro, says. “We have in fact brought in [Akiva Goldsman] to lead a group of writers to really create a strategic plan around Transformers – we think there’s any number of stories to be told. It’s a brand that’s been around for 30 years with amazing canon and mythology. We would expect the sequel to the Transformers movie to happen in 2017.”
It's unclear whether Goldner means that production will begin in 2017 or that the film will be released in 2017, but either way, this is confirmation of Goldsman's writer's room concept and confirmation that Paramount is indeed putting infrastructure in place for this franchise to continue to expand over the new few years. Like I said in my initial rant, it's hard to fault them from a business perspective since these movies make serious money, but creatively, you'd be hard-pressed to find a worse movie than Transformers: Age of Extinction when looking at high-budget films of that ilk. We can only hope that the new brain trust has enough time to come up with a decent script before moving into production on this new movie. Mark Wahlberg has signed on for multiple sequels to Age of Extinction, and Michael Bay is expected to return behind the camera.