Coinciding with the release of Transformers: Lost Age in Japan this week, the Japan Times
has posted a fairly lengthy article with interviews with the main cast and crew. Featuring comments by director Michael Bay, leading cast members Mark Wahlberg, Kelsey Grammer, and Nicola Peltz, the article, posted here
, looks at various aspects of the movie, its production and different people's take on it - check out some sections below!
His latest, “Transformers: Age of Extinction," promises more of the action and explosions Bay is known for, but the director reportedly almost didn’t take the job this time around. He’s not saying why, but he admits he was “prevailed upon. Expertly." Coming back on board for a fourth time, he decided to make a few changes to the franchise. In particular, he didn’t want the robots to look too much like toys.
“I understand the need to draw an audience of kids and the global considerations, but I wanted to be involved with something that had a longer-lasting, even cerebral appeal. And I don’t want to be tied - artistically or in people’s minds - to ‘Transformers’ after ‘Transformers,' " he says, perhaps alluding to the series’ planned fifth installment.
While the Japanese roots of “Transformers” may be apparent in the design of the robotic heroes and villains of the film, the “global considerations” Bay refers to come mainly from the newly important Chinese market.
“Transformers: Age of Extinction” was partly financed by Chinese backers, has Chinese product placement and co-stars Li Bingbing as the owner of a factory manufacturing Transformers for a U.S. outfit named KSI. Bay says that cooperation between China and the United States for future filmmaking ventures will be important. The tendency of Hollywood to cast the citizens of foreign nations in villainous roles might be coming to an end if that’s the case, I suggest, to which Bay replies, “I don’t think the Chinese see themselves as villains. They do want to be admired."
Grammer, who played the titular role in the popular U.S. sitcom “Frasier” (1993-2004) takes on the role of Harold Attinger, the paranoid head of an elite CIA unit.
“His name’s Harold - isn’t that a perfect, anal-retentive, paranoiac name?" Grammer says with a grin. “Then you have Cade, pretty much an average Joe, and his daughter Tessa (Peltz) - these wonderful names! Stanley Tucci is this arrogant technocrat (head of KSI) who wants to make and control his own Transformers, and his name is Joshua Joyce. It’s a bit comic-bookey, but it really works on screen."
“Transformers: Age of Extinction” has succeeded in drawing in a large audience despite replacing its cast, and Grammar believes this is because the film brings back the real draw - familiar robotic characters.