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Seibertron.com interviews Hasbro's Transformers Brand Team at #HASCON 2017

Transformers News: Seibertron.com interviews Hasbro's Transformers Brand Team at #HASCON 2017
Date: Thursday, September 14th 2017 2:40pm CDT
Categories: Toy News, Event News, Interviews
Posted by: william-james88

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Seibertron.com was able to speak with Ben Montano (Head of the Transformers Brand) and John Warden (Transformers Design Manager) from Hasbro's Transformers brand team at HASCON. Below is a transcript of the interview. The interview was done by our very own Megatronus and it includes Hasbro staff using "CHUG" as an actual term and them speaking of Machinima as a source of inspiration for their continued stories within the brand, among other neat tidbits. A video of this same interview can be found below for the full experiences and line dissection, enjoy!



Megatronus: A few years ago you guys released news of a design bible, or the brand bible I should say, that kind of guides the entire Transformers Universe. And I know you guys have a very long road map, so can you tell us about any changes that have been made in this brand bible recently or any other content in that repository that you are thinking of using for the road map 3 to 5 years out?

Ben: There's things, there's characters designs, there's stories, continuity that we have mapped out in this bible, but it is an ever living document. There are certain constants that will be there; like certain characters, what they stand for and their roles they play as they get introduced into content. But 100%, as we look into the Bumblebee film, there's new additions to that, and twists to that, that will have a ripple effect on the brand and we are fortunate enough to be part of those and those ripples in our continuity. Some of the fun is we give creative license to Machinima and the great writers there and on the new and upcoming Cyberverse series that we want to bring freshness to the story so we want to bring freshness to the story so we create the canon but the canon flexes and constricts when it's needed but the constants are there and John is one of the stewards as we go forward.

John: Yah, trying to align the continuity as much as we can in a natural feeling way has always been a challenge on Transformers going way back even before my tenure on the brand. It's kind of a rolling stone and as new toys come out and as the spotlight shifts, we adjust accordingly. And honestly, the brand does too as it's affected by pop-culture and things in the world.

Ben: And the fans are helping us write this book too, like with the fan polls.

Megatronus: When can we expect the next fan vote and can we expect anything to happen with the runner-ups to those fan-votes like Omega Supreme, Scorponok, Deathsaurus, etc?

John: Oh, absolutely. I mean, as you guys have witnessed with a lot of the previous fan-votes, I think it's an opportunity for us to kind of just get a consensus from the fan community. Honestly, it's too early at this time to speak in any kind of definites, but we reach out to the fan community, it's a great opportunity to gauge the excitement level. Also kind of test out, you know, is Beast Wars becoming more popular? Like when we put Deathsaurus and Star Saber in a fan-poll, for example, it was actually an opportunity for us to understand the depth of exposure that people had to the Japanese Headmaster series. Like, is that too deep or as it turns out a lot of people know about Deathsaurus and are asking about it. So a lot of times I say "stay tuned", but in this case really we've got some things on the horizon that will make fans happy.

Megatronus: So you're saying we can definitely expect another one in the future sometime soon?

John: Yah, I think we can safely say that.

Ben: For sure. When? To be seen. But yah.

John: Can't say which one or ones.

Megatronus: We can't probe too deeply here, we can just give crumbs and hope for more. After you exhaust the nostalgic G1 type gimmicks, I mean we're getting to Pretenders even, how do you see the brand moving forward? Do you think that we will be looking at brand new concepts and new characters, adding them to the fold in the vein of Windblade, or do you think that you might integrate other Transformers continuities like Unicron Trilogy, Animated or RID, into the Generations line?

Ben: Can we say all of the above?

John: No absolutely, all of the above. And, you know, one of the things is too if you think of the CHUG characters and things like that, its possible to go back and do figures of again and again and again. Once you get removed from Combiner Wars, you could hypothetically do Combiners again in a couple of years. It's about how do you bring that innovation and freshness back while not corrupting the original intent or awesomeness of the character in the first place. I think we've really tried our best to take the essence of the what made the characters cool in the first place and add detail, add articulation, and take the spirit of somebody like Skullcruncher or Highbrow, and do the ultimate version of it. I think as we look to the future, there's a lot more that we haven't even thought about, a lot of awesome anniversaries on the horizon and things like that, so I think fans can rest assure that even though the Prime Wars Trilogy is coming to an end, there's lots of awesome stuff on the horizon.

Megatronus: That's good to hear. Speaking of Prime Wars and Power of the Primes, you mentioned Combiners, can you tell us what inspired you guys to come back to the Combiners concept after Titans Return?

John: Honestly, it's you guys, it's fans. It's coming to events like this, we talk to fans, we listen, we read online, and we just have to kind of always be cognizant of what people are talking about and thinking about. We heard loud and clear that fans wanted the Dinobots, and we wanted to take it to the next level and make it a Combiner. We've heard loud and clear that fans want Terrorcons and things like that and there's lots of things that we're listening to and even Pretenders, we heard, Pretends are on the horizon. There's things out there that fans want. We're always listening and kind of being aware of it, and what the future holds we can't really say but know that there's always excitement to kind of bring back things so if fans of Titans Return are like "Oh man, I didn't get my Apeface or somebody that I really wanted" don't feel like it's the end-all-be-all at the end because as stewards of the toy franchise we are able to weave these things in where they make sense.

Megatronus: So I know there are a couple of people very high up at Seibertron.com that are quite obsessed with Pretenders, so I'm glad to see that some of them are here.

John: Oh, really? [Laughs]

Megatronus: In Power of the Primes, you have both combiners and Titan Masters present so those are both very independent stand-alone concepts. So what kind of play patterns are you looking to inspire by having them included in a single line?

John: [Laughs] Well, Ben and I, early on, when we were talking about this thing, it's kind of like the last act at a really awesome rock-and-roll show so you've got like the first band comes on stage they do an awesome job and the second band, maybe a different music style ...

Ben: Maybe acoustic.

John: Yah, and then in that final act, it's both of those guys with an encore, they come on stage together. In Power of the Primes, we've got Primes Masters which are the physical embodiment of the Power of the Primes, some of them deceased, some of them missing in action, but it's the power and essence that they carry. So in a sense, those guys still fit backwards compatible with Titans Return. We also wanted to bring to life all of those great things or tidbits with Combiners. There's lots of cool things that we can still do, that we can still explore, so if you combine those two things together, I think it's a great final act and it's a great final act in our rock show which is the Prime Wars Trilogy.

Ben: Right, I think a lot of what inspired and motivated us too, to be honest with you, was Machinima and their writers there in the storytelling too, when we really started Combiner Wars, it was totally rooted in G1 and G2 kind of lore, it was character first. But as we progressed with this toy line and the stories, we started to introduce new spins, new twists, bring new characters together and stories that hadn't been told and a lot of it for us was "Hey, wait a second, we didn't see this character and that character back in the 80s but there's a story that wasn't told" so we're gonna show that to them in Titans Return or the Power of the Primes series with Machinima. And that for us, it was a creative license and we can do something that didn't happen exactly as it did in 84 through 87. We have a new story universe, we have a new fan community that are going to be engaged in this new idea. So I think that part of it, I don't want to say that the shackles are off, but if we did we looked at it and said we're creating new continuity and extension of continuity. Let's have some fun with it and not be as precious with exactly what may have been celebrated back in the 80s. So that was kind of the fun we had.

John: Absolutely.

Ben: So having writers in the new series expanded our minds and hopefully will blow yours.

John: And honestly, the same can be said with our great partners at Space Ape and all of our other aligned partners across the franchise. And I'll be speaking to this at the Prime Wars Trilogy panel on Sunday. We actually feed off each other when you think about all of the different stories that are happening at the games and the animation and it gives us, like Ben said, a license to try awesome new stuff.

Megatronus: That's great! I am very excited for Power of the Primes. It sounds like you are really excited about Power of the Primes as a highlights reel of kind of the last couple of years, which is awesome to think about in that way, so we've seen two Autobots leaders. Are we gonna see some Decepticon leaders soon in the Powers of the Primes line?

John: Uh ... hmm ... [Rubs chin] Leader class right? unfortunately I can't comment at this time, I don't want to break any hearts or anything.

Megatronus: So, that's fine, we'll ask about a different product. Since we are at HASCON, what's the potential for future crossover products? Because we are in the Transformers booth right now, Marvel's over there, Star Wars is just a skip away, and there's a huge Nerf play center over there. Do you see a lot of potential future crossover products like a new Transformers Nerf gun, a Transformers My Little Pony, something like that?

Ben: We are always looking at that and the Comic-Con Revolution is one step in that direction. There is a really awesome Rubik's Cube mash up we just did which is super cool which I have not ...

Megatronus: Rubik's Cube!?

Ben: Yah, it's like an 8 piece Optimus' head, and I have not yet solved it. It's absolutely insane. So, that one might be obscure, but that's kind of the fun we're having. As long as it's brand right, brand relevant, then we're open to those types of plays. But I would say we have a lot of great stories that we're telling on our own right now, so we'll be pumping out a lot of toys to support those.

Megatronus: That sounds great. Well, I think I have one last question. One of the big reveals of recent days has been Predaking, Titan Class, so ...

John: Sort of. I'm not sure what was that silhouette? I have no idea what that was.

Ben: Well, there was a really cool silhouette.

Megatronus: I've seen some interesting art that would indicate that there might be a large Predaking on the way.

Seibertron: You meant that's not Elita-One?

Ben: It could have been a winged Optimus Prime.

John: Yah, I think it's Winged Optimus Prime.

Megatronus: So that's all we're going to say about that. For now. Okay, so I'll let you guys off the hook. Well, I really appreciate you guys talking to us over at Seibertron.com. We're big fans of the work you do, we look forward to seeing more at the panels this weekend. And HASCON has been amazing!

John: Thank you. I can say one thing about that crazy silhouette. It's big. It's bad. And it's the most awesome thing Hasui and I have worked on since Devastator.

Megatronus: So, since Devastator, so ... so that silhouette is Titan Class, no?

John: No, I can't say that. I'm just saying he's big, he's bad, and uh ...

Ben: Except for those who made it to the Villains panel, any Villain is big and bad, right, especially in the Transformers universe.

[Banter continues ...]

John: Honestly, it's been an honor to have a chance to meet you guys, to talk to you again, and honestly I hope you have fun here at HASCON. We're having a lot of fun. It's crazy!

Ben: Yah, we're psyched and we've seen you guys and a lot of your fans and a lot of past events, whether it's Botcon, and this is special for us, a chance to share this. What I think is really great is that we're having a lot of fun in this conversation and that we can joke about things and what excites me the most is that we can talk about or not talk about things in the future. The fact that we're able to do that is because you guys share the love for our brand, what we're doing, and people keep asking for more. So we want to do this at the next convention and the next HASCON, and so the more everyone can support our brand and property and have fun like this the more we can share in news.

Megatronus: That's amazing. You know. the last BotCon was my first BotCon. So I got to go to the last BotCon, which was great, it was a cool honor to be there. It's an even more interesting journey to see how that's transitioned to this HASCON.

Seibertron: [directed at Hasbro] Are you accidentally inadvertently confirming a HASCON 2018?

Ben: No, I think, like I said, there's a lot of conventions we'll be part of. You'll see us at New York, hopefully I'll be able to drag this fine gentleman there as well.

Megatronus: Coming to my home turf!

John: It's just a train ride away!

Ben: Plenty of conventions to get to hang with you guys at.

Megatronus: We're very much looking forward to it.

John: Awesome.

Megatronus: Thanks so much guys, really appreciate it.

John: Thanks a lot.

Megatronus: John, Ben [shakes hands] Be good, enjoy the rest of HASCON!

John: Same to you.

Megatronus: See you at the panels! Thanks guys! Thanks everyone at Seibertron.com. We'll catch you later!

IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017
Date: Wednesday, September 13th 2017 4:11pm CDT
Categories: Comic Book News, Interviews
Posted by: Va'al | Credit(s): Paste

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Views: 8,950

From Paste magazine, we have some news about another upcoming First Strike consequence in IDW Publishing's, regarding the current GI Joe series (featuring Decepticon Skywarp as a member - the best member - of the team), and its rebranding after the crossover event: Scarlett's Strike Force! The interview can be read in full here, you can find a snippet below, and you can check out some concepts, cover art - and even interior art for upcoming First Strike tie-ins for MASK and GI Joe!

This December, Sitterson continues his mission with artist Nelson Daniel in a new series titled Scarlett’s Strike Force. Announced at Hasbro’s industry event Hascon today, Scarlett’s Strike Force will pit the titular character and her crew against the newly reemerged threat of Cobra Commander. Paste chatted briefly with Sitterson about the decision to relaunch G.I. Joe under a new title, Daniel’s contribution to the franchise and how the duo plan to produce “The Best Action Comic Ever.” We’ve also got an exclusive first look at interior art from this fall’s First Strike tie-in issues of G.I. Joe and M.A.S.K., both written by Sitterson and drawn by Ilias Kyriazis, as well as concept art for Scarlett’s Strike Force from Nelson Daniel.

Paste: What prompted the name change? Is there a shift in tone or mission statement with this new iteration?

Aubrey Sitterson: In the previous Joe series—by me, Giannis Milonogiannis and Lovern Kindzierski—Scarlett was the leader of a team that included not only Joes, but the Decepticon Skywarp, and in the new series, they’ll be joined by Matt Trakker of M.A.S.K. as well as another face that might be familiar to long-time fans.

So, coming out of the First Strike event, we thought it made sense for the name of the book to speak to the nature of the team. Don’t worry though—the reception to our unique take on G.I. Joe has been amazing, so there are no plans to stop giving you the bombastic, sci-fi-action-packed character drama that you deserve!

Paste: Should we expect a team shakeup or any new faces?

Sitterson: While the focus of the book will remain on the characters you know and love—including Scarlett, Roadblock, Salvo, Quick Kick and Skywarp—one of the G.I. Joe concept’s greatest strengths is its deep roster. We’ll be pulling from it, and even introducing the classic Action Man character, The Intruder, into the Hasbro Universe. Plus, our brand-new Cobra Commander has assembled an organization including Destro, Storm Shadow, Cesspool, Croc Master, Raptor and an army of new, serpentine Vipers.


Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

Transformers News: IDW Hasbro Universe - GI Joe Relaunching as Scarlett's Strike Force in December 2017

More Details on IDW First Strike Tie-in Issues, with Barber, Sitterson, Gage

Transformers News: More Details on IDW First Strike Tie-in Issues, with Barber, Sitterson, Gage
Date: Wednesday, September 13th 2017 8:42am CDT
Categories: Comic Book News, Interviews
Posted by: Va'al | Credit(s): IDW

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Views: 7,852

With the third issue of the IDW Publishing Hasbro crossover First Strike out today - review coming soon, too, so stay tuned - we also have some additional information on some of the upcoming tie-in issues featuring the various titles involved: Optimus Prime, Transformers, G.I. Joe, M.A.S.K.: Mobile Armored Strike Kommand, the Micronauts and Rom. Check out the backmatter of the issue below, and join the conversation in the Energon Pub!

Welcome back, IDW Faithful! This month, we’re talking to writers John Barber, Christos Gage and Aubrey Sitterson about their First Strike one-shots featuring Optimus Prime, Transformers, G.I. Joe, M.A.S.K.: Mobile Armored Strike Kommand, the Micronauts and Rom!

Where do your stories take place around the First Strike event?

CG: Concurrently. Basically, while all the Cybertronian action is occupying G.I. Joe and Earth's other homegrown defenders, the Dire Wraiths see an opportunity to enact a new and exceptionally brutal attack on our world. But Earth isn't completely defenseless...Rom and the Micronauts are still around, and they're our only chance!

AS: G.I. Joe: First Strike and M.A.S.K.: Mobile Armored Strike Kommand: First Strike both take place concurrently with the main First Strike series. But while First Strike is set primarily on Cybertron, my two-parter with Ilias Kyriazis is Earth-based. With Scarlett and Roadblock both
off-planet, Shipwreck finds himself in charge of the team, and when a Cobra-backed V.E.N.O.M. attacks, things go about as well as you'd expect for someone with the codename "Shipwreck."

JB: Optimus Prime: First Strike starts during issue one of First Strike, in Colton's initial attack on Cybertron. That fight keeps going for the first few issues of First Strike, so it covers some of what's
going on during the whole battle—Optimus doing stuff you don't see in the First Strike comic itself, including a special attack on a particular Cybertronian character.

How is the status quo set up for the new series and new arcs coming out of the one-shots and First Strike?

CG: You're going to see the first encounter of any real length between Rom and the Micronauts, so we're laying the groundwork for them knowing of each other and working together. There are a
number of things Rom has in common with several Micronauts, which we'll touch on. And as the heroes come together, so too do the villains…

AS: Coming out of G.I. Joe #9, we've got a reinvigorated Cobra and a brand-new Cobra Commander, but we haven't really seen them in action yet. That changes in our First Strike issues, where Cobra begins piecing together a devious scheme that we'll see play out in the pages of our new G.I. Joe series, with art by the amazing Nelson Dániel! Additionally, with V.E.N.O.M. getting folded into the evil organization, G.I. Joe counters by bringing M.A.S.K.'s Matt Trakker onboard! and considering Trakker's particular set of skills, you'll be seeing some notable upgrades on the
team's equipment…

JB: These will bring in some of the characters and stuff that's been happening in Revolutionaries into the ongoing Optimus Prime series. We'll see where that leaves us in the next Optimus Prime arc, "The Dead Come Home."

If you could team up any two characters in the universe, who would it be? And have you done
it yet?

CG: I would love to do an entire series that is just Baron Karza and the head Wraith sorcerer, D'rge, being haughty frenemies. Which I guess kind of gives away that they meet up. Oops!

AS: What kind of question is this, when The Crown Jewel of the Hasbro Universe already features the most iconic odd couple duo in not just comics, but all of fictional entertainment?! I'm speaking, of course, of Rock 'N’ Roll and Skywarp.

JB: In the Hasbro universe? Kup and Action Man, and yes I have—right here, in fact!

#HASCON 2017 Transformers Brand Panel Q&A Video

Transformers News: #HASCON 2017 Transformers Brand Panel Q&A Video
Date: Tuesday, September 12th 2017 5:14am CDT
Categories: Toy News, Event News, People News, Interviews
Posted by: Va'al

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Views: 7,962

This next story featuring a recording from Hascon should be seen as a follow-up to our first report on the Transformers Brand Panel, as it was taken during the second instance of the talk given on the Sunday - see our Friday report here! Featuring both Hasbro and Takara Tomy designers for several toy lines, such as Sean Isabella Carmina, Lenny Panzica and John Warden and legend Hideaki Yoke-san, the clip specifically focuses on the Q&A section of the talk, which we've transcribed below the video, too.

In addition, we're including all previously posted videos from the weekend that deal with the toys talked about in the clip, all in one convenient viewing spot!




The panel are talking about how the issues that Hideaki had 30 years ago are pretty much still the same

Would you make a combiner out of combiners? Lots of excitement, but no - nothing in the plans.

Power of Primes compatible with Titan Masters? Yes, Prime Masters and Titan Masters are interchangeable. Optimus Prime can wear TR Optimus' head in his chest.

Any plan on Titan Masters/Prime Masters multipack? It's really cool - maybe around holidays (but no solid plan).

When designing, do you start in vehicle or robot? Depends on the designer, some start from the vehicle 'as armour', but vehicle to robot makes life a little easier. Combiners start from the way out, combined mode first. Always carry a sketch book. Yoke-san also starts with vehicle first.

Titans Return line had less paint than Takara, are there going to be similar changes in Power of the Primes? It's all down to value for consumers and price points: more details, more cost. Case by case basis, really.

Came up with a Transformers zodiac - but what are your signs? Warden - Leo, Panzica- Cancer, ISabella-Carmine- Aries, Yoke- Leo.

What type of background would get you a job like this? School, industrial design degrees. Blend of engineering and art, also fashion design with toy specialisation portfolios (Panzica's experience).

Level of discussion between Powermaster Prime and Super Ginrai, there was some, yes.

Importance of spark / allspark - distinctive difference between other mech: Transformers have a 'soul'.

Transformers can scan anything and transform into it. Ejector, Erector, ice-cream Transformers in Japan.

Sharkticons - are there any other designs planned to come out? Sharkticon that turns into jet, maybe?

Packaging: product converts vs transformers transform - not able to comment at this time, but it's way they do, they convert. (question by Seibertron, answer by Warden)



HASCON 2017: Transformers VIP Event TOY and Hall of Fame Reveals


HASCON 2017: Transformers Brand Panel featuring Dinobots, Optimus Prime, and more!



New IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Comic Series Announced, by Mags Visaggio & Fico Ossio

Transformers News: New IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Comic Series Announced, by Mags Visaggio & Fico Ossio
Date: Friday, September 8th 2017 3:21pm CDT
Categories: Comic Book News, People News, Interviews
Posted by: Va'al | Credit(s): AV Club

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Via the AV Club, we have a full reveal of a previously hinted at new IDW Publishing series - just not quite this way. We knew that Visionaries was coming back to the Hasbro Universe at the end of First Strike ( see here ), and we know have a look at how the actual series will be called and what it will look like: presenting... Transformers vs Visionaries!

Written by Magdalene Visaggio, art by regular Fico Ossio, the series will feature a new spin on the 80s property and include the Transformers to piggy back into the mainstream (take that, Crown Jewel). Check out below covers (by Andrew Griffith, Ossio and Angel Hernandez) to the first issue and some character designs - and make sure to head to our database page for more information as it comes out!

The Hollywood bump is all it takes to pull a property out of obscurity, and IDW is showing what an updated Visionaries might look like by bringing it back in comics. December’s Visionaries Vs. Transformers pits a forgotten property against one of the world’s biggest, and IDW is making a smart move introducing this new version of Visionaries by attaching it to a far more popular franchise.

Even smarter is teaming Magdalene Visaggio, writer of the Eisner Award-nominated Kim & Kim, with artist Fico Ossio to put their own fresh spin on the characters as they introduce them on the Transformers’ home planet of Cybertron. “”As someone who grew up on a host of Hasbro/Sunbow animated shows, I’m very excited to help revive Visionaries for modern audiences,” says Visaggio. We’ve worked hard to keep it fresh enough for new readers, but faithful enough to the source material for old fans. It has all the same scheming wizards, dastardly villains, and flawed heroes of the original, but with a stunning new twist.” Ossio adds: “I’m very excited to be working on Visionaries and teaming up with Mags and [editor] Sarah [Gaydos]! Happy to be able to update them for a new generation! Mags’ script is really great and I can’t wait to have them stand against the Transformers.”


Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers News: IDW Transformers vs Visionaries Discussion Thread

Transformers Universe: Bumblebee Interview with Jonathan Hook on Location and Production

Transformers News: Transformers Universe: Bumblebee Interview with Jonathan Hook on Location and Production
Date: Thursday, September 7th 2017 5:15am CDT
Categories: Live Action Movie News, People News, Interviews
Posted by: Va'al | Credit(s): THO

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According to the Times Herald Online, who were able to talk to Jonathan JJ Hook - the supervising location manager a co-producer for Transformers Universe: Bumblebee - about what goes into finding the right location to shoot a movie, and some more details about his approach to movie-making in general. Find out some snippets below, and the whole piece here!

For “Bumblebee,” a spin-off of the Michael Bay franchise “Transformer” movies, plenty of it is in Vallejo. This week on Mare Island, count on evenings with helicopters, special effects and pyrotechnics, followed by two days of downtown action.

The supervising location manager and co-producer oversees around 15 people on his team, though he’s handled movies orchestrated as many as 50 others working simultaneously in numerous states and countries.

It’s not a job for the timid, said Hook, a Los Angeles resident and native of England.

“You are dealing with change and pressure,” he said. “But if you’re creative and have a good imagination, you can climb the ranks quickly.”

Hook started as a personal assistant in England doing a period piece that included a shipwreck.

“My job was running out with blankets, tea and coffee,” Hook said.

[...]

It wasn’t difficult to create exactly what was needed in town here, Hook said.

“Vallejo has got great bones,” he said of the town’s infrastructure. “It’s an Anywhere America, Back-to-the-Future type vibe. The great thing about Vallejo is there aren’t these huge chain stores. There a few other cities in California like it, but not that many. The city hasn’t been turned into a strip mall.”

Mare Island’s drydocks have been perfect for “Bumblebee,” said Hook.

So good, he noted, “the ending of the movie was re-written after finding the location.”

ITV interview with IDW MTMTE & Lost Light writer James Roberts

Transformers News: ITV interview with IDW MTMTE & Lost Light writer James Roberts
Date: Thursday, August 17th 2017 4:53am CDT
Categories: Comic Book News, Interviews
Posted by: Kurona

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Views: 12,476

British TV company ITV has reached out to a fairly surprising section of the Transformers franchise -- the IDW comics! In the link below, they have interviewer Rob Moore talk to James Roberts - the writer of Last Stand of the Wreckers, More Than Meets The Eye and Lost Light - about conventions, how he got into the job and what he might do after Lost Light among other things. Check out the interview by clicking the image below and tell us what you think in the forums!

Transformers News: ITV interview with IDW MTMTE & Lost Light writer James Roberts

Full Preview & Interview with IDW First Strike #1 Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Transformers News: Full Preview & Interview with IDW First Strike #1 Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike
Date: Saturday, August 5th 2017 10:53am CDT
Categories: Comic Book News, People News, Interviews
Posted by: Va'al | Credit(s): IDW

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Views: 18,272

Still operating on the lack of an embargo, we have a repeat of the full preview for IDW Publishing's Hasbro Universe First Strike comics crossover event - which we have seen before. What is new is the interview with writers Mairghread Scott and David Rodriguez, a brief one mind you, in the backmatter of the first issue of the Transformers meets GI Joe meets MASK meets Micronauts meets Rom the Spaceknight. Check it out below!

Can you give us a hint of any major surprises or revelations that readers can expect from First Strike?

MS: Well, Scarlett’s gonna throw down with the last person on Earth she wants to fight. Anyone who thinks Shazraella’s gonna spend this book clinging to some-one’s shoulder is sorely mistaken. Optimus is in for a rude awakening and Elita One is going to prove once again that there’s a reason she’s the same color as Cybertronian blood. Oh, and that’ll take us to the end of Issue 2.

DR: I’m not sure what we’re clear to say this early on. But I can say that this isn’t just an “event” series—the universe is going to be permanently changed in a meaningful way by the end of First Strike. Hopefully we can get some jaws and f-bombs to drop. When working with characters with such a long history, how do you raise the bar and bring readers something they haven’t seen before?

MS: The most challenging part was more tonal than anything else. Till All Are One is a very political book. G.I. Joe is very balls-to-the-wall crazy action. Micronauts is fast-paced with a lot of wry humor. M.A.S.K. and Rom take on a darker tone. We wanted to feel like all these books could live together and still give fans each book’s unique aspect.

DR: I think the best thing we can do for the readers, and luckily Mairghread and David Hedgecock have been a big advocate for this as well, is to make sure that we are engaging all the characters in this story with emotional stakes that resonate with our readers. Sure, we can put Cybertron at risk with a huge, summer blockbuster style event and visuals, but without that relatable, human backbone to the story, it feels hollow. We are going to do our best to deliver that experience to fans.

Are there any characters you’re going to work with in First Strike that you haven’t had the chance to write before? Any characters you’ve been away from for a while that you’re excited to write again?

MS: This is my first time writing Scarlett and I am psyched. I’ve been wanting to write her for years. And it’s always a thrill to write Optimus. It’s been surprising how fun all the Joes are to write, but the real stand-out right now is Shazraella. She’s such a stuck-up, overconfident, condescending...well, every line of dialogue she has is a joy.

DR: Scarlett has always been a favorite. I was glad that I got to use her in the M.A.S.K. Annual and she has a large part in First Strike. She is just a fantastic character to write. But part of the fun of First Strike is the opportunity to discover and expand on characters I wasn’t as familiar with growing up and exploring how they interact with each other. But don’t be surprised if you see Sunstreaker. He is, after all, the prettiest damn Transformer that ever rolled out.

And finally, if you could be a Transformer,who or what would you want the ability to transform into?

MS: JET! JET! JET! Wait—! Robot dragon! No, 1950s UFO! ...Did anyone call shark/bird yet?

This may take a while.

DR: Oh, I would totally want to be Shockwave. Not only is his design incredible, but he might be the most stone-cold, ghost-faced, unflappable character in the entire universe. I don’t know if you remember, but Megatron called him from Earth after 4 million years and Shockwave picked up on the FIRST RING. No hemming and hawing, or “Where the hell you been?!” He was just “Yes, Lord Megatron.” 4 million years and he didn’t blink. That’s just badass.



Transformers News: Interview with IDW First Strike Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Transformers News: Interview with IDW First Strike Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Transformers News: Interview with IDW First Strike Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Transformers News: Interview with IDW First Strike Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Transformers News: Interview with IDW First Strike Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Transformers News: Interview with IDW First Strike Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Transformers News: Interview with IDW First Strike Writers Mairghread Scott, David Rodriguez #HasbroFirstStrike

Lootcrate video interview with artist Marcelo Matere

Transformers News: Lootcrate video interview with artist Marcelo Matere
Date: Saturday, July 29th 2017 11:33am CDT
Category: Interviews
Posted by: Kurona

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Views: 5,316

With a Transformers-themed Lootcrate having dropped just last month, Lootcrate themselves got together with Transformers comic book artist Marcelo Matere - who also drew up the illustration for said Lootcrate's shirt - for a short video interview to discuss what type of art he goes for and how he got into drawing Transformers in the first place among other things. Check out the interview below and tell us what you think in the forums!


SDCC2017: Plans Until 2021, Only Slugslinger in Wave 6, Hidden Gimmicks and More Discovered in Interview with Hasbro #HasbroSDCC

Transformers News: SDCC2017: Plans Until 2021, Only Slugslinger in Wave 6, Hidden Gimmicks and More Discovered in Interview with Hasbro #HasbroSDCC
Date: Saturday, July 22nd 2017 10:25pm CDT
Categories: Event News, Site Articles, Interviews
Posted by: william-james88 | Credit(s): John Warden from Hasbro

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Views: 21,594

Site owner Seibertron had some exclusive news from Hasbro head Transformers designer John Warden during the designer's final interview at SDCC2017. We got several definitive answers to questions several fans had, and we thank him greatly for that. Here is the full interview


Can you tell us about the other two Titans Return box sets which we have not seen yet?

Sure, as fans have noticed, the sets are centered around the four different powers/tech specs and only two of those powers are getting the boxset treatment. We will not be releasing the other remaining powers as box sets of the same kinds but there will be unique offerings that will allow fans to have a representation of the two remaining powers. It will be exciting news shared later so stay tuned (Editor's note: this is probably what the recent Arcee and Ultra Magnus leaks are about and would explain why they are a different format than what we have previously seen since the remaining powers would not be done in the same way as the boxsets)


Will there be other toys in the Slugslinger wave?

Yes but they will all be repackaged characters. I do not remember which characters are repackaged however Slugslinger is the only new character in that wave and the final new toy from the Titans Return line (Editor’s note: this might be a response to the frequent practice of retailers not ordering/stocking the final waves of figures as was the case with Combiner Wars)


While the Combiner Wars show got a lot of hits and downloads, the fan community still felt there was much to be desired. Can you tell us if there will be an improvement with the Titans Return show?

We are very excited to be working with a partner like Machinima. The Combiners Wars show turned out great. Machinima has some exciting news that they shared at the panel we just had like all the new voice actor talent. They're very excited to say that Peter Cullen is back and so is Judd Nelson and Wil Wheaton will be the voice of perceptor which is great. They will also be lengthening the episodes which is really really cool.

Transformers News: Plans Until 2021, Only Slugslinger in Wave 6, Hidden Gimmicks and More Discovered in Interview


Okay well I'm looking forward to it. Now speaking of supporting fiction, what is the plan for supporting fiction in Prime Wars and Power of the Primes? Will these core ideas of the toy line be supported in the IDW fiction?

Um, well I mean that's a very good question. We do have a great partnership with IDW and we share with them all our plans. They're able to bring to life those characters in very interesting ways so I think that yeah I don't know specifics but yeah the plan would be to work with IDW as much as possible.


Why release the 12 Primes as avatars instead of making toys of the Primes themselves?

Also a really good question. So the primes really in some cases are more like spirits, you know, it would be hard to imagine some of them in toy form aside for some like Vector Prime. Also, they are lesser known to casual fans. The Prime Wars line really seems to be paying off like doing A-list characters and also mixing in some more obscure characters like the Targetmaster Decepticons that only had the G1 toy before. With the Primes, that's a lot more difficult especially when scale is a factor since some would be really big it would be a challenge to make a big version of a great Prime. So to bring them to life in an ecosystem it's better to look at it in a small and unified collectible way and introduce them that way. That's how we came up with the decoy suits, it gives a chance for younger fans to have a collectible and it helps to bring these lesser known characters into a toyline.


Why not wait for this Prime evolution gimmick to release Power Master Prime?

That's an excellent question. The idea we have in Power of the Primes line is that they evolve up so he would have been a good fit. But in the year Titans Return we wanted to make sure we had a big version of Optimus Prime and there's only so many big cool versions of the character so as we were looking at the Titans Return ecosystem we weren't even thinking of that evolution system yet which only came to real form a year ago and by that time Power Master Prime was already finished.


Quick question on that on (Power of the Primes) Jazz, is he a fully new mold?

Yes he is all new.


Any plans for God bomber in the US?

God Bomber, there are no plans for God Bomber to come to the US at this time. All that is planned is that Magnus Prime in the Seige of Cybertron set.

Transformers News: Plans Until 2021, Only Slugslinger in Wave 6, Hidden Gimmicks and More Discovered in Interview


It appears that there are combiner ports on the Power of the Prime deluxe figures and on Starscream. What can you tell us about Combiners in Power of the Primes?

I will answer that with a very vague answer right now. So story-wise the Prime Masters had the powers of the gods and they can unlock certain powers. Now we wanted it so that these powers are not just up to kid's imaginations, the Prime Masters can literally unlock some gimmicks that are hidden in these toys as well. That is as much as we can say for now but we will reveal more at a later date for sure, fans just need to stay tuned.


I'm assuming that Hascon is a place where this will be further revealed?

That's right, Hascon, and Hascon fans will be the ones that will see more of the gimmicks hidden in the Power of the Primes line.


There were some Headmaster characters that were missing in the Titans Return line so will the Titan Master gimmick have a resurgence in the power of the Prime line where Headmaster Juniors could have toys of their own?

Not in Power of the Primes line I can say that flat out but in the future, not only were we thinking ahead when we did the Prime Wars trilogy but as we start to think about the future we actually have our course mapped all the way to 2021 which is very exciting. So when you look at Generations, the roadmap for the future is very bright and gimmicks like a Titan Master are fully engineered and there's no reason why we would not revisit that later and these are all characters we could eventually cover.


When you guys started Combiner Wars, was the road map to Power of the Primes there or not?

We started with Combiner Wars and we knew we wanted some sort of a sequel to it since we knew that Combiner Wars would one day end. When I started planning, I came to the table with all these characters we had not done yet. Headmasters, Fortress Maximus, Trypticon, so we decided it would just so much stuff that the higher ups decided to make it a Trilogy. And that made sense to us so it happened organically. So the idea of doing Power of the Primes was there in essence and we put a flag in the ground a long time ago knowing it would eventually lead to the Primes and the Power of the Prime (literally) since it's the most epic part of Transformers history.

Transformers News: Plans Until 2021, Only Slugslinger in Wave 6, Hidden Gimmicks and More Discovered in Interview


Anything with Omega Supreme or Scorponok which were also into fan vote since you know we like those guys?

Well the fan polls are really awesome for us because they let us engage with the fans and see what they're excited about. When we look to 2021 and all the possibilities we now have with the technology, absolutely. Characters like Omega Supreme and Scorponok are some of the most memorable characters in The Transformers universe and in the spirit of imagining things that are cool and giving them a new light they are totally on the table.


Now what about the fan favourite Dinobots, is there any possibility of G1 reissues or in the Generations line, other than Grimlock?

One thing great about San Diego Comic-Con is speaking to people not just die hard fans like you, but also any casual fan that could be walking by. We hear loud and clear last year that Rodimus Prime was the character people really wanted to see and now we have him. We also heard loud and could people really wanted those Dinobots so nothing to reveal yet but I can say that we always listen to fans.

Transformers News: Plans Until 2021, Only Slugslinger in Wave 6, Hidden Gimmicks and More Discovered in Interview


Has Hasbro unveiled anything in terms of exclusives for Hascon?

Nothing yet but stay tuned, there is definitely something. It's a very very cool something.


Is there anything else you might want to share with us any random thought let us know?

I don't know, I think it's just really exciting to be at an event like this because not only do you have a chance to meet fans but when you look at characters like the movie Masterpiece Optimus Prime, there was 20 year old kid and I saw a sparkle in this guy's eyes and he was thinking "that's a toy of a character I loves seeing as a kid" (when he would have been 10) and it's energizing to see the torch being passed, I think that's really what makes our franchise so cool. It's not just G1, it's not just Beast Wars, it's not just the movies, it's everything and we're all together it's one big Transformers family. It's very exciting.

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Transformers Podcast: Twincast / Podcast #184 - The Search For Alpha Trion
Twincast / Podcast #184:
"The Search For Alpha Trion"
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Posted: Sunday, September 17th, 2017
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