Steven Spielberg Talks Michael Bay Returning for TRANSFORMERS 4; Plus an Update on INDIANA JONES 5

     December 2, 2011


Director Steven Spielberg has two very different movies coming out this holiday season. One is a fun, animated action-adventure (The Adventures of Tintin), while the other is a very serious drama about World War I (War Horse). In anticipation of the release of those films, The Beard recently spoke to Entertainment Weekly. His full interview will run in the latest issue, but the director made some comments regarding Michael Bay returning for a fourth Transformers pic and gave an update on Indiana Jones 5, both of which are now available. In addition, he addressed recent discouraging comments he made about Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Hit the jump to see what he had to say. 

transformers-dark-of-the-moon-set-photo-michael-bay-01Speaking with EW, Spielberg was asked whether he thought Bay would ever return for another Transformers outing. Here’s his response (with a big thanks to /Film for the quotes):

“I hope so, because I think he made the best of the three with this last one. I certainly can’t imagine anybody other than Michael being equipped to make another Transformers. He’s invented a genre and he’s got the secret formula.”

While I didn’t quite feel that the insanely cool action towards the end of Dark of the Moon made up for the rest of it, Spielberg apparently feels differently. There seems to be a glimmer of hope for those keen on Bay returning, as evidenced by the action director’s recent comments to Channel News Asia (via /Film):

“How did I know someone’s going to ask me this question today? We’re talking about it, but there’s nothing right now. I’m going to do a tiny movie first, then we’ll talk about it, if I potentially do it.”

Initially Bay was pretty adamant that Dark of the Moon was his last effort for the franchise, but it definitely sounds like he’s thinking about changing his mind. If he does indeed come back, Paramount will be extremely happy.

indiana-jones-4-crystal-skull-poster-01Spielberg also addressed some revealing comments he made recently regarding Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, echoing his previous sentiment that his job on Indiana Jones is basically to best bring to life George Lucas’ vision:

“I’m really proud of the movie. I loved bringing Marion back. I love the fact that Indy now has a son. It’s a family action film, and I love that whole conceit. It’s public that George and I and Harrison all had a clash about genre and concept. But I’ve always told George’s stories. My biggest contribution was adding the father to the third movie. That was my idea, to cast Sean Connery as Harrison’s father. I am best friends with George and I’m very obedient to the stories that he writes. I’ll fight things I don’t believe in but ultimately if George wants to bring interdimensional beings into Crystal Skull, I will do the best job I possible can to acquit George’s idea and make him proud.”

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is a great movie, so I think what we’ve learned here is deferring to Mr. Spielberg’s expertise is a pretty good call. Whatever your feelings are regarding Crystal Skull, it looks like a fifth entry of the franchise is very much in the works, as Spielberg provided the following update:

“It’s up to George. We have already agreed on the genre of the fifth movie, we already have a concept in mind. I don’t know where George is with the story. There is no Indy 5 until George says there is.”

Here’s hoping Indy 5 is alien and refrigerator-free. You can read the full interview in the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly.

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  • T. Van

    Regarding Transformers 4 & 5, Bay’s probably being offered too much money for him to completely dismiss the idea of being involved with those movies. If he’s allowed to do things such as; simply produce, film the next 2 installments back-to-back or have a greater degreee of creative flexibility, I think this will happen.

    Whatever the case, his strongest current position is that he will only work *after* he completes a smaller project (potentially Pain and Gain)… which is not a very strong position at all. Just look at Joss Whedon. He may not yet be done with the post-production work on Avengers, but he’s already made 1 movie and is developing another.

  • tarek

    I’m really sorry to hear that Steven. I’m really disappointed.

  • IllusionOfLife

    Forget alien and refrigerator-free, I personally hope Indy 5 gets stuck in development hell and never finds its way out. With the current state of Lucas there’s no way he’s going to turn in a story that’s worth a damn, and it will only be pissing on the great Indiana Jones’ grave.

  • mark tornits

    there is a whole lot more wrong with indy 4 then just the aliens/ genre.

    The script was a mess. How can they leave out a comedic moment with indy in the class room- the pacing was off, the story was off, the script was off. just a mess.

    • SP

      It was badly directed too, let’s not give Spielberg a pass. He phoned it in, maybe because he didn’t like the script. Remember, he is the guy who put his Close Encounters aliens in A.I. for no particular reason, which Lucas seemed to parrot in Indy 4. The whole thing was “off” as you said. Frankly, the same premise more deftly handled, could work, but they were more concerned with finding a way to involve no-talent, acting, wunderdork Shia Lebouf, and doing everything in front of a green screen, than in making a good movie.

      • jymmmymack

        This just goes to show how much people actually know about what they have strong opinions about. Spielberg didn’t create that ending or the “aliens”. That ending had been around for 10 years and was written by Ian Watson, and was Kubrick’s preferred version of the story, which is why he wanted Spielberg in the first place, as he felt it matched more with his filmmaking. Also, those “aliens” were robots of the future who had evolved greatly after the fall of humanity.

  • wev

    Urghh this Speilberg/Bay relationship is foul, has the guy no pride anymore :/
    I am slowly losing my respect for this great director, the guy will tag his name to any old shite these days.
    “I think he made the best of the three with this last one” really Steven, shame on you.
    Transformers 3 was a nasty, crappy film. The first one twas easily the best of the three, at least it had a bit of charm to it. The newest one had god awful pacing, worse attempts at comedy, everyone in it including the robots are terribly realised. Prime was a dick in that film! Anyway the one true and best Transformers film is the 80′s animated movie, you wish you could make a film that good Spielberg/Bay :)

    I am slowly losing my respect for this great director, the guy will tag his name to any old shite these days.

    As Indy, leave it the f**k alone, please! You are now just a puppet to the insane George Lucas. Stick to making you own films and leave these terrible film makers to do there own rubbish. I am so looking forward to seeing War Horse next year, i just hope he’s interactions with some of these sub par over hyped “film makers”

    Going to go and watch JAWS now :)

  • Wayne Clay

    I hated it the first time that I saw it, but I just watched it again four days ago, and I loved it this time, I guess it caught me off guard the first time.

  • Joe Kal-El

    I honestly cannot understand all the hate and negative comments about Indy 4. I mean, how can you not realize it had the same UNBELIEVABLE moments than the other three movies? Just admit that after 20 years, Spielberg and Lucas made a damn good sequel. Indy 4 was fun, entertaining, engaging, and funny. Seriously people, this is not a sequel to Schindler’s List.

    • Spock Jenkins

      Je Kal-El, what you been smoking, kiddo?!?!

    • Spock Jenkins

      Sorry for the typo – meant Joe Kal-El of course…

      • tarek

        He didn’t smoke. I think he is Steven writing under an alias.

        Shame on you Steven.
        Luca$ has destroyed the Star Wars Saga, and now Steven is following his steps…

    • IllusionOfLife

      It may not be a sequel to Schindler’s List, but it’s almost as torturous.

  • kemo

    Crystal Skull was AWESOME! Bring another one on. For older rich guys they all did a great job! Everyone who has a problem with should really get introspective about their expectations and reality–and get over yourselves! Do another one It’ll sell big! and I’ll love it!

  • Robotpo

    Spielberg seems to realize that he’s no longer relevant in pop culture…the last time he made a mark on cinema was with “Saving Private Ryan” in 1998…over a decade ago. He and Lucas have been on creatively bankrupt autopilot since the end of the 90′s, and they’re simply not the kings of mainstream film they were from the mid 70′s through the end of the century.

    And what’s more, Spielberg doesn’t really seem to care: he’s made his fortune, his established his legacy, and apparently, to paraphrase his best friend/arch nemesis/wife Lucas, he has “earned the right to fail”. So he’ll keep pooping out Michael Bay/Transformers movies, Shia LaBoof vehicles, crap like Indy 4, Cowboys & Aliens and Super 8 (not to mention Falling Skies and Terra Fukking Nova), disposable fluff like Tintin and misguided “prestige” pictures like the abysmal-looking War Horse. Lincoln MAY be a reprieve and return to form…but I doubt it, at this point.

    The Hobbit and Prometheus are now the bringers of hope. Spielberg is just depressing: from genius filmmaker to DreamWorks marketing executive.

  • RIC

    So the best aspect (Connery/Ford relationship) in the best of the franchise (Last Crusade) was Spielberg’s idea and he didn’t want there to be aliens in the last one??

    All those in favor of sacking George Lucas and giving complete control to Spielberg say I!!

    • SP

      The first movie is the best of the franchise with a bullet. Connery / Ford has charm, but the movie was not nearly as tight a plot, or as well executed as Raiders or Temple of Doom for that matter. Last Crusade was more like a greatest hits version of the first film, echoing scenes that were done better the first time. As far as the relationship between the actors; it was nice, but a bit of a gimmick in the same vein as the later Lethal Weapon movies, where they just kept adding new well liked, actors to the mix, because the filmmakers thought the charm of the ensemble of “old friends” was what the audience wanted, rather than a solid story. In the case of LW, they were dead wrong. Last Crusade was still a very good flick, but seeing as it’s full of franchise “in-jokes” and some plot holes, there is simply no way it can be held up as equal to an original work like Raiders much less as better.

      • Tarek

        Agree 100%.

  • Tim

    “Munich” was awesome.

  • colin

    every time spielberg puts his name on a piece of paper, he feeds another 10 generations of his family. I say SIGN ON Speilberg….sign on my friend.

  • Bob

    I just didn’t get the whole family entertainment BS with Crystal Skull…it wasn’t th worst movie ever made, but the other three are just heads above it. It doesn’t seem that hard…make it a darker movie, with light movements of levity, have a great story (Bermuda Triangle) and let Indy have a new sidekick (no Shia) and let the older, chunky Marion be left out….her presence in this last movie was annoying to say the least. Also, and I;m serious…Ford needs to dye that hair brown again, he looks similiar in the face and build, but the white/gray hair makes him look like a Grandpa. What’s the point of looking 50 and having the physicality of a 35 year old at age 68…and looking like an old man??? Stupid.

    • tarek

      Marion looked younger than Indy in Crystal skull.
      Ford is too old for the job.
      All what we could expect now is a sequel entitled “Indiana Jones and the nursing House”

      Let it go Steven. Let it go

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  • terry

    Michael is a freaking hack. Steven is just pimping that gravy train. Indy, please, it is over and I mean over. No need to put a nearly 70 year old Ford in front of the camera. It ain’t 1984 people.

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  • Skynet

    I enjoyed Crystal Skull, the alien parts were fine, they were fitting for the time period of UFO sightings in the 60s, and for people who roll their eyes at the idea of aliens, really how much more far fetched is it than the ark of the covenant, voo doo magic and a holy grail? c’mon people.

    What I didnt like about Crystal Skull was Shia Tarzan boy swinging through the amazon and cg prairie dogs. The main villain wasnt that great, I just didnt buy Cate Blanchett’s character, it felt forced. Of the 4 movies, it definitely was my least favorite.

  • Fred

    Crystal Skulls was horrible. Of all the legends, myths out there THAT was the most obvious choice? Overall the lamest of the Indy movies.

    Shia was bad (no big surprise), Cate Blanchett, who normally can rock any role, came of as fake or overacting, Ford came off as tired and annoyed, I’m guessing he really HATED the lackluster script as much as most of the people who watched the movie. Bringing Marion back was a hug mistake, she was kinda fun last time around, but not so much that the character needed to come back.

    I have to say this movie was a huge disappointment to me. I even tried to sit through it a second time, but I just couldn’t.

    No thanks, to another installment.

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  • Tazzyredneck98

    I agreed to Harrison Ford for an comeback the 5th movie to be the last, since if being killed off by shot rocket to the moon wouldnt be a good idea. So there should be something that he be killed in the last movie leaving the Hat and Whip to the next Indy his son.
    If after the 5th movie and his son be the next Indy 6th that would be something different if his father left him a note…. That he couldn’t reach the newest golden whip if it were secured like the first movie lost ark :)
    Golden Whip should be name on the film and destroy everything that the enimes can’t get Golden Whip and the son goes to his fathers grave to rest his Whip in peace that he completed Indys missons :) what do u think of my idea ?

    • Tarek

      I think that your idea is as crappy as the Crystal skull. ^^

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