Actually, did we ever find out why Animated was cancelled?
Why are we talking about Animated?
Hasbros development of the 'brand' dictates that there is only a couple of continuities 'on the go' at any one time;
A lot of mentions of Animated refer to how it was treated (or, more clearly, 'jilted') in favour of TFPrime - the inference being that the new movie may possibly do the same;
Animated was originally lined up as 'filler' between the 2007 movie and ROTF; (this might not have been the case originally, but how it ended up anyway) - there was only a projected Wave 1, 2 tops of the figures, depending on customer interest (in the same way they said TFPrime 'wasn't going to get any toys' until people started asking for them)
I love the Animated toys, but, each time I try to watch the fiction, I can't. I suspect I'm not the only one, but I rarely bother with the fiction, the only exceptions are G1, movies and TFPrime.
Tie that in with the leap forward computer generated animation had taken at the time (simplified animation like South Park, which tries to look like crap, but actually uses quite clever computer animation, and is created only about a week ahead of time), and compare it with the traditional 'look' of TFAnimated - which looks a LOT older than it is, and took much longer to create, using more 'traditional' methods, and Hasbro seemed to realise they had 'backed the wrong horse', as it were...
The jump was made to dump Animated, and go with TFPrime - Prime is one long (admittedly, impressive) computer game 'cut scene', where the CGI assets are moved around in the 'sandbox' - the main overhead is the design/creation of them, once they go 'into rotation' on the show, the more cost effective they are - the renders for Prime, Bulkhead, Ratchet etc haven't changed much since the beginning, IMHO.
Hasbro made a conscious decision to unceremoniously 'dump' it like an 'inbetween girlfriend', and start from scratch, along with bringing it more 'in house' - which made a lot of people angry, for various reasons (me? I liked the toys!)
Regime changes at the head of Transformers brand marketing have brought in this 'aligned continuity' which will serve to join the games, TFPrime and the movies, past and present, to some extent. (Good 'old fanwankery will also fill the gaps)
The movie itself will be a mix of old and new characters- Bulkhead, for one, will DEFINITELY be in it, maybe Arcee , Wheeljack, Breakdown, Smokescreen (which is a pastiche/homage of all the 'young bucks' like Rodimus, Cliffjumper, etc over the years)- Movie Prime will still be there, I'm hoping they'll go with a couple of old G1ers as well (Magnus, Kup, Mirage, Inferno, Cyclonus) -
With all the Wrecker love over the last couple of years, I'm guessing they'll repopulate the Wrecker team, hopefully they wont be as one dimensional as last time, maybe they'll be the main plot, or subplot of the film;
And with Megatron killed off in the final reel of DOTM, I'd lay money on Galvatron being the 'big bad' of TF4. Nemesis Prime may also be a player.
Hopefully, they won't screw up by letting Bay add, or change characters on a whim (name changes/rollbacks were rife in the last couple of films), or that can't be licensed for toys (Dino/Mirage/Rush/Whatever, but without it being a GM festival either); or add these comic relief characters that seem to stray from the brands continuity (Skids, Mudflap, Brains, The Doctor, Que)
I'm cautiously looking forward to it, as long as they don't screw it up.... again.....