6 Directors Who Could Take Over the TRANSFORMERS Franchise

     July 4, 2011


Now that Michael Bay has wrapped his trilogy of Transformers films, it looks like he’s ready to move on to other exploding pastures. Since Paramount and Hasbro want to keep the fire burning on one of their biggest moneymakers, two major decisions lay ahead: when to release the next movie and who should direct it. Bay has been able to crank out Transformers film every two years since 2007, but his infrastructure, crew, and designs have remained in place as opposed to a new director who will, to some extent, have to start from scratch so as not to simply imitate Bay. Transformers 4 could come as early as summer 2013, but I would bet a summer 2014 date is more likely.

But who will direct it? Who can fill Bay’s expensive, nonsensical shoes? It needs to be someone who can manage a big budget and even bigger special effects. It’s not enough to make stuff blow up. You need to understand how to do it properly. After the jump you can check out my suggestions for six directors who could handle Optimus Prime and Friends.


Roland Emmerich

Yes, the Foundation trilogy and Singularity, and he’s been offered Asteroids, but no one likes destruction like Roland Emmerich. He’s destroyed the Earth with aliens, weather, and a cataclysm, so why not with giant robots? Like Bay, he’s a storyteller who doesn’t seem to care so much about telling stories as much as creating intense, unrelenting thrill rides for the audience. Also like Bay, while he’s unpopular with critics, but his movies make a ton of money. Of everyone on this list, he’s the most similar to Bay and if he didn’t have other commitments, I’d consider him as a top choice for the job.


Joe Johnston

Joe Johnston is in prime position to take over a major franchise as early buzz on Captain America: The First Avenger indicates that it will be both a box office and critical success. Johnston is a bit of a journeyman director and twice in his career he’s been asked to take over a film or a franchise. In 2001, he took over the Jurassic Park franchise from Steven Spielberg (who just happens to be the executive producer on the Transformers films) and Johnston was brought in at the last minute to replace Mark Romanek on The Wolfman. Like Transformers, Captain America is set up at Paramount and the studio may want to keep him in house but place the Transformers franchise in his charge. However, if Captain America is a success, he may want to stick around and direct Captain America 2 instead of trying to serve as the follow-up to Michael Bay.


Jon Turteltaub

Like the majority of directors on this list, Turteltaub is a journeyman. He doesn’t exercise a strong creative vision but can competently put together an action film, and that’s what Hasbro and Paramount want. They want a guy who won’t make waves, will happily include as many robots as necessary so Hasbro can sell more toys, and won’t take Transformers too far away from the formula that has made it one of the most successful franchises of all-time. Turteltaub made a splash with the National Treasure films and then got a much larger budget to make last year’s flop The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. However, one could argue that Apprentice failed not because Turteltaub didn’t know how to do special effects or handle a big budget, but because it wasn’t based on anything more than a Fantasia segment. Transformers has a built-in audience so Turteltaub wouldn’t have that problem.


Stephen Sommers

This one is a bit of a long shot since it doesn’t seem like Sommers and Paramount parted on good terms after G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. There were rumors that he’d been locked out of the editing room and then he chose not to return for G.I. Joe 2. But the fact of the matter remains that big dumb action is Sommers’ forte and he’s already delivered a CGI-heavy blockbuster film based on a Hasbro line of action figures. He’s currently at work on an adaptation of Dean Koontz’ supernatural mystery novel Odd Thomas, but I doubt that Sommers’ hiatus from blockbusters will last for long.


Louis Leterrier

Following the success of Clash of the Titans, Leterrier had this eye on The Avengers, but didn’t get the gig. He’s also interested in adapting Brian K. Vaughan’s Y: The Last Man, but is currently at work on the magician heist thriller Now You See Me and he’s attached to the disaster film G, which follows “a father who has to search for his lost child as the world stops spinning and Earth begins to lose its gravity.” But if Paramount swooped in and offered him Transformers 4, it could conceivably take prime position in his schedule. Keep in mind: Transformers 4 is a sure-fire hit and little kids don’t care who’s in the director’s chair. What Paramount and Hasbro are looking for is someone who has handled big budget action films before, understands CGI, and preferably has some hits to their name. Because of Clash of the Titans, Leterrier absolutely fits that description.


David Yates

When the Harry Potter franchise is finally over, David Yates will be one of the most in-demand directors in Hollywood. He has delivered the best films in the franchise and has balanced pulse-pounding action scenes with thoughtful, moving drama. With the exception of Johnston, Yates is the only director on this list who seems to really care about characters and story and that may make him absolutely the wrong choice for Transformers. Keep in mind that Steve Kloves has done an incredible job adapting the Harry Potter novels and making good movies is made easier when you’re working from such strong source material. The Transformers films, on the other hand, have scripts that are written on the back of cocktail napkins. Yates will have a lot of offers following Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 and I can’t help but wonder if he would care to take his talents from a rich, wonderful franchise like Harry Potter and move them to a world as vapid as Transformers.

transformers-dark-of-the-moon-set-photo-michael-bay-01Final Thoughts

Remember that sometimes studios take chances. Marc Webb had only directed one critically acclaimed indie flick ((500) Days of Summer) but Sony thought it was good enough to hire him for The Amazing Spider-Man. However, I would bank on a director like the six mentioned above more than someone known for their smaller, non-CGI heavy work. I’m sure there are plenty of other directors we’ve forgotten so please sound off in the comments section on who you think should take over the Transformers franchise (and keep in mind that Paramount and Hasbro aren’t thinking just one more film; they’re thinking of at least another trilogy) and tell us why you think that director is right for the job.

One more thing to consider: With Shia LaBeouf also leaving the franchise, Paramount has some options on where to take the series next. They could do a reboot, but it’s unlikely since it would mean reintroducing all the Transformers. It’s possible that a supporting cast member could be elevated to the lead role, but that’s also a slim chance. With Spielberg still working behind the scenes, I would bet on another male teenage protagonist in the lead role and then that protagonist can grow over the course of three movies. That’s the formula that’s worked for the previous three movies and I don’t see any reason why Paramount would want to break from a formula that’s made them a ridiculous amount of money.

Now that Michael Bay has wrapped his trilogy of Transformers films, it looks like he’s ready to move on to other exploding pastures. Since Paramount and Hasbro want to keep the fire burning on one of their biggest moneymakers, two major decisions lay ahead: when to release the next movie and who should direct it. Bay has been able to crank out Transformers film every two years since 2007, but his infrastructure, crew, and designs have remained in place as opposed to a new director who will, to some extent, have to start from scratch so as not to simply imitate Bay. Transformers 4 could come as early as summer 2013, but I would bet a summer 2014 date is more likely.


But who will direct it? Who can fill Bay’s expensive, nonsensical shoes? It needs to be someone who can manage a big budget and even bigger special effects. It’s not enough to make stuff blow up. You need to understand how to do it properly. After the jump you can check out my suggestions for six directors who could handle Optimus Prime and Friends.

  • wev

    what a crap selection haha, Stephen Sommers, Roland Emmerich? They would be worse than Bay!!!

    • SPS

      Besides Bay, I can only picture Emmerich doing it, if that makes sense. $379 worldwide isn’t enough, it will ultimately be what the fans decide. And judging from the previous posts, it looks like they’ve had enough.

  • An

    “With the exception of Johnston, Yates is the only director on this list who seems to really care about characters and story and that may make him absolutely the wrong choice for Transformers.”

    This invalidates the entire article for me.

    • Rob

      Joseph Kahn? Director of Torque? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Hilarious.

      Good call on the Wachowskis, though.

      • Hunter D.

        Yeah, Rob. I think the director of Torque would be PERFECT for a movie franchise about robots punching each other while hot chicks preen on motorcycles in slow motion. He’s EXACTLY the kind of director I want for this film.

  • Hunter D.

    I’d hope for someone a little bit more interesting than any of those filmmakers. Maybe Joeseph Kahn, Tarsem Singh, John Singleton or even Lee Tamahori. Shame that Speed Racer didn’t put the Wachowski’s in director-jail for just a LITTLE bit longer, because they could do amazing things with this franchise and if they needed a comeback, Paramount might actually be able to get them. Alas, they’re working on two original films right now and not a 4th entry into a series of films based upon action figure commercials.

  • sense 11

    So you want a bad director.

    I disagree

    • m.v.

      They may be “bad”, depending on how snobbish you are… but they are bankable which is what I think Matt is going for. I find a lot of these movies that people think are “horrible” to be entertaining because, well, that’s what they were made for. Stop expecting anything more from these directors and watch how their movies become much more enjoyable.

      • Huff

        Stop it with the “snobbish” line. People don’t call some of these guys bad because they’re stuck up, people call them bad because they have a poor grasp on directing period. And the whole “Stop being a snob and just enjoy it line is stupid.” There are plenty of dumb action movies that are enjoyable (the most recent example being Fast Five) but guess what? The reason why they’re enjoyable when Bad Boys 2 isn’t is because they’re well-written and well directed. Ultimately you do need something else besides explosions to make a good action film (even a dumb one).

  • Tarek

    Why not the Strause Bros ? it will be the opportunity to bury once for all this mecha nonsense. ^^

    David Yates carrying about characters ? Is it a joke ? David Yates is the director who destroyed the Harry Potter Franchise for me.

    • Mr.Orange

      THANK YOU! To this day I can’t sit through Half Blood Prince, and that’s my favorite book.

      • thekken

        hey come on man. Yates isn’t that bad. Yes, Half blood prince movie was the crappiest, but then deathly hallows was really good.

    • Old Soldier

      No,no,no,no, NOT the Strause brothers. Anyone but them! If they get their filthy hands on this they will ruin it and/or make it worse. They were raised on Chucky movies and Friday The 13th. They will turn the series into slasher flicks and find a way to kill or terrorize pregnant women in them.(See AVP Requiem and Skyline)I would rather see Uwe Boll or Ed Wood direct them. In fact I would rather see the guy who directed Battlefield Earth take over. Skyline was a piece of SHIT! These guy are hacks please don’t bring them up again.Please.

    • Zev

      Finally, someone who feels David Yates ruined Harry Potter other than me.

  • Hunter D.

    If Fast 6 aint ready to go for a minute, Justin Lin could do it, and do it well. Terminator 5 ain’t happening soon.

  • TheTrickster

    Why the hell are you going to waste a good director on a Transformers movie!?

  • plainview

    Spielberg should be smarter. they already have the money they need. now it’s time for a REAL transformers movie. give it to a Neil Blomkamp-esque director and let him reboot it ala Nolan rebooted Batman from the circus Batman that came before.

    maybe a real transformers movie that’s like the cartoons. (the only problem is that robots aren’t that interesting without humans around. it might look an animated film. but im sure a genius filmmaker will figure it out)

    • tzaylor

      I agree, reboot that

    • evandest

      I agree 100% with you plainview… I would also reboot the Resident Evil franchise…

    • Gary

      Bay had no understanding or grasp of the source material, and neither does Spielberg. Bay portrays the Transformers as battlemechs when they are supposed to be sentient robots. BTW What on Earth did they do to Shockwave? Why couldn’t we have Marvel comics Shockwave?

      The cartoons may have been dumb but the COMICS are very mature and adult, with extremely strong characterisation.
      It annoys me no end that people say you can’t tell a smart Transformers story when the comics have done it many, many times. Most of the best Transformers stories were written by Brits.

      The Transformers comics are as rich as Harry Potter, its only the movies and cartoons that can be described as vapid. Do some research before making assumptions about Transformers based on Bay’s movies.

      Put SIMON FURMAN and/or NICK ROCHE in charge of the story and characters. He knows Transformers better than anyone else.

      I favour an adaptation of TRANSFORMERS: THE WAR WITHIN (check out the superb fan-made adaptation on YouTube). War Within is a fan-favourite and would garner critical as well as box office success.

  • Ben

    Justin Lin wants to direct Terminator 5. It’s been his dream since he saw the 1st Terminator. But my top choices are Lin and Emmerich. Wishes that Wachowski brothers could direct Transformers….they did a good job for the Matrix. But those 3 have my vote.

  • shaunx

    How about Coen brothers ??? LOL

    • Tarek

      they are too good for this. ^^

  • Quentin Lester

    Why aren’t people like Zack Snyder, Jon Favreau, Matthew Vaughn, or Joseph Kosinksi?

    Also, Sommers is the worst director working today not named Uwe Boll.

    • Quentin Lester

      Why aren’t they on the list?…I meant to type….

      • Nellboi

        I Recommend Jon Favreau, He Did A Good Job Directing Both Ironman 2, And We’ll See What Cowboys And Aliens Has To Offer.

    • Hunter D.

      Well, Snyder is booked on Superman.

      Favreau is no good with CGI or action, though after Cowboys and Aliens bombs he might be an actual candidate.

      Matthew Vaughn is probably in the middle of a 3 picture deal with Fox. The second two films were supposed to be X-Men, but who knows if that happens now. Every movie he has ever directed has underperformed. You don’t give that guy a billion dollar franchise.

      Joseph Kosinksi is booked with Oblivion. Also, Tron: Legacy was not much of a money maker, theatrically. I would be sorely disappointed if he got this job, his action scenes have even less sense of geography than do Bay’s.

      • Quentin Lester

        I wasn’t considering from a scheduling standpoint, but from more of a capability standpoint.

        I’d imagine Snyder could easily fit this between two Superman movies (assuming he directs a second Superman). With Superman starting to film in August and hitting theaters Dec 2012, he could do this for a summer 2013 or 2014 release.

        Tron made $400 million worldwide. It was a financial success, and its fanbase wasn’t near as built in as Transformers’ is now.

        While I agree First Class has underperformed a bit (still made $335 mil, thus far), let’s be fair…they handed him an X-Men franchise and gave him a slew of X-Men that no one really cares about.

        and, I just flat out disagree with you regarding Favreau.

      • SPS

        Um, TRON did pretty well if I could recall correctly. Blame the Christmas release date, had it opened in the summer, it probably could’ve done a lot more.

      • SPS

        Ugh, every single time.

      • SPS

        Same thing with X-Men. In fact, I should open this up and who else agrees. They should reevaluate the box office numbers for all of these so-called “underperformers”. All of those films I’ve seen had packed audiences and good fan reception (TRON: Legacy, Sucker Punch, Thor, X-Men: First Class, Green Lantern, etc… etc… etc…). Those were all really well made films that deserve so much credit than they did. If anyone else is bothered by the fact that The Hangover Part II is the highest grossing film of the year so far and that the $1 billion gross of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is only $250 million in the U.S., tell studios to reevaluate box office numbers. Now. ASAP.

      • Hunter D.

        Quieten: 400 million is a lot, but net profits and gross profits are very different things. Consider the 170 million dollar budget and 150 million in marketing and the reshoots costs and the opportunity cost of both the budget and the release date, which, btw, is one of the best possible release dates in the whole calender. It worked pretty well for Avatar and Titanic.

        The film was the baby of the new studio head at Disney, it got AAA treatment, as good a release date as it could possibly have, a massive marketing push and it STILL only grossed 400 million. It might have made some coin for Disney, but no where near what they wanted or needed it to make. Thus, no sequel.

        Snyder could not fit in a Transformers film between Superman films. That’s insane. You have no idea how incredibly work intensive these films are. To jump from one franchise reboot into a second franchise reboot and release them during consecutive summers? No way. Maybe he could hop on board for a smaller production, or something with less world building involved, but I don’t think that two franchise relaunches, back to back, would be advisable.

        And SPS:

        I have no idea what the hell you’re talking about.

      • Quentin Lester

        First off, I wasn’t the one making an issue of release dates. That was the other fella who also lost me in his rant. However, having said that, are you really going to throw Titanic and Avatar financial quotes at me? A movie from 14 years ago and the first major, mainstream 3D movie release, respectively? You’re going to quote two December releases in close to 15 years as evidence as “the best possible release date in the whole calender”? Come on, man….you seem smarter than that. What did the average movie released in that time frame do, box office wise? Not so much.

        Despite what you want to call Tron: Legacy (success or failure), there is a sequel and an animated show in the works. So, you are incorrect on that “no sequel” comment. And, Transformers is a hit franchise. Even after the atrocity that was part 2, people still flocked to part 3. It’s not about bankability as much as its about capability. If you don’t think he’s capable, fair enough…but Kosinski took a dormant, near 30 year franchise and rebooted it with, at the very least, moderate success.

        As far as Snyder goes, I said a 2013 or 2014 release. You don’t think he could do Superman for December, 2012 and release Transformers 4 in July/August 2014? Granted, there is alot of assuming in this situation…maybe he doesn’t want to do two Superman movies and pulls out like Branagh did on Thor 2, or his Superman bombs like Singer’s, or Superman doesn’t take the “every other year” sequel approach like Transformers has thus far?

        With Nolan producing Superman, it could go along the same timeframe as the Batman movies (2005, 2008, 2012). With a timeframe like that, Snyder could easily work in a Transformers movie. Who knows? All I’m saying is if the studio wants him to do it, they’d work out the timeframe.

      • Hunter D.

        I was actually quoting two movies released on the SAME WEEKEND as Tron: Legacy. It’s not a coinkidink that the two highest grossing movies of all time shared the same release date. Nor is it a coincidence that Disney chose to launch Tron: Legacy on that date. It is a very good weekend, one of the best in fact: National Treasure 2, Night at the Museum, Pursuit of Happyness, King Kong, all three LOTRs and What Women Want are just a few of the other films that launched the weekend before Christmas. And the fact that the two highest grossing films of all time shared that release date is excellent evidence that it’s one of, if not the single best release date on the calendar, seeing as they are, you know, the two top grossing movies of all time.

        There is no significant work on a Tron sequel. They took almost a year to announce that they had hired a writer to script it. Not a good sign. They do not have a director attached. Not a good sign. Tron was supposed to be a franchise relaunch, when it works, they announce the sequel immediately as a marketing tool and then actually get to work on a sequel. Hiring a green, B-list writer to script a sequel to an underperforming wouldbe blockbuster a year after the aforementioned film’s release is not “work on a sequel.” The writer is getting 300-500k for the script at very most, more likely he’s getting half of that. Getting a script is done all the time. Hell, they even wrote a sequel to Battlefield Earth. As for the cartoon series, it was already deep into production when the movie premiered. Theatrical bombs get cartoon series all the time. Evolution got a tv series. Godzilla (98) got a tv series. Hell, Rambo III and Robocop 2 each spawned a cartoon series. A children’s cartoon does not mean that the film was a success. In fact, the cartoon is part of how you amortize the cost of the film!

        Literally almost any version of Tron: Legacy would have done 400 million. Not because of the marketability of the brand or because of the quality of the movie but rather because Disney spent a HUGE amount of money marketing it. 150 on domestic marketing, iirc. If you spend 150 million dollars marketing a movie, you’re going to get a certain level of return unless the movie is Jonah Hex bad. And even then, if Legendary and WB hadn’t written that movie off months before release and instead spent 150 million to push it I’m sure it could have done a few hundred million worldwide. Hell, Mars Needs Moms could have made 400 million with a Pre-Christmas release and 150 million in marketing.

        Superman is coming from a competing studio. There is no way they would let him out of his contract (usually a 3 picture deal) to do another major tentpole. There is too much risk for both studios were this to occur. If Superman needed more work then TF4 would get pushed back, if TF4 needed more work than Superman 2 would get pushed back. The studios plant their flags in the sand years in advance because they build their entire business portfolio around specific release dates. If TF4 or Superman 2 couldn’t meet the needed release date it would cause the parent company’s stock to tumble on the NYSE. Not even just the studio would suffer, the entire corporation. It may have been outlawed in the 1930s, but the studios are deeply vertically integrated. The movie is needed to help sell a thousand other products and if they miss the release date everyone’s fucked. What’s more, each studio would have reason to try and keep Snyder as long as possible to mess up the other studio’s plans. Take for example the battle between the dueling Snow White projects coming out next year or the case of Twisted Pictures forcing the director of Saw VI back for Saw 3D after he signed on to do Paranormal Activity 2. This totally screwed up Saw 3Ds production, but the studio hoped it would pushed PA2 out of business. Snyder is about as likely a candidate for TF4 as Lars Von Trier. Actually, Lars Von Trier is more likely because he’s not under and contractual obligation that would prevent it.

      • Hunter D.

        Another way to gauge a movie’s success is to look at what the lead actors did afterward. After Avatar hit Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana blew the fuck up. Worthington was attached to or offered almost every action film in town. Saldana got a huge number of new roles too. Some of her older indie work even found release dates (two in the same week, even!) Shia LaBeouf got Eagle Eye, Indy 4 and Wall Street 2 (smaller film but a 70 million dollar budget). Christian Bale is pretty selective with his roles. He was offered everything, but he only took 3:10 to Yuma (big budget for a dead genre), Terminator 4 (straight paycheck), Public Enemies (probably wouldn’t have been made without him) and even secured a wide release for a Terrance Mallick movie that got middling reviews. Let’s compare this Garrett Hedlund…oh…he has a Tron short film and a role in a Jack Kerouac adaptation. Sure, Walter Salles made it, but it ain’t a gig you get because you’re officially a movie star. Nothing else on IMDb. Olivia Wilde actually did okay for herself, but that’s probably more because of her bodacious figure on the poster than it is because of anything she actually did in the film.

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  • Charlie S.

    WORST LIST EVER! Is it April 1st, or are you inhaling straight no filter again. Drinking doing whip -its and then posting articles makes for pure comedy.

    WRONG WRONG WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    If any of these tits gets the franchise, some ones getting assasinated.

  • Charlie S.

    On the other hand, this is the perefect list for a go-bots/machine men movie.


  • yo-yo


  • Enigmatic

    Whoever gets the job it would be nice if they at least make an attempt to try to develop some of the non-human characters. After three movies Bumblebee and Optimus Prime are the only two I can remember.

  • DJ

    what about jon farveau? hes really getting his name out there as a action/ summer block buster director plus hes a total fan boy

  • Howard

    The gig will go to either Brett Ratner or McG, and ordered by Paramount to be a rush job on a tight deadline, using model assets from all three Bay movies overlaid into stock footage from the major video stock houses, and be a double-feature shot back-to-back… in 3D.

  • benjamin moore


    This needs to be the last Transformers film. It is perfect as a trilogy. It can not be made without Bay.

    Move on, buy He-Man or do some kind of 90′s era property like Power Rangers or Pokemon for the next gen coming through. Transformers has been done, and done WELL.
    Don’t tarnish the franchise with some other terrible director.

    Zack Snyder is a TERRIBLE CHOICE. Watch Sucker Punch again and you’ll see what I mean.

    No one understands cars and action like Bay. NO ONE!

    Also get over your love for Nolan. He is a one trick Pony. So he made one batman film that was good, Inception was RETARDED.

    • CMS


    • Quentin Lester

      Sucker Punch, the visually fantastic movie with subpar writing, shoddy acting, and poorly developed characters? Wait….did I just describe all three Transformers movies?

      Also, what is Nolan’s one “trick”? Restoring a franchise beloved by several generations to greatness? Yeah, you’re right. That “trick” wouldn’t work at all on Transformers, a franchise beloved by several generations.

      • EBfan

        Sucker Punch was bashed for no reason. It did have an emotional story line about a loss of innocence and all of the effects and fantasy worlds were representing the inner fears of the main girls’ storyline. Because of the subject matter, people did not grab onto that at all, so don’t call it “subpar writing, shoddy acting, and poorly developed characters” because it was deeper than any of you thought it was.

      • Quentin Lester

        The consensus on Rotten Tomatoes (22% rating) was “It’s technically impressive and loaded with eye-catching images, but without characters or a plot to support them, all of Sucker Punch’s visual thrills are for naught.”

        Hell, even most of the good reviews say, while entertaining, it’s “ridiculous”, “incoherent”, full of “campy, cheesy…dialogue”, “lacks an emotional core”, and shows that storytelling “isn’t (Zack Snyder’s) strong suit”.

        It was an entertaining flick, but quit acting like it was Citizen Kane.

    • Leo

      Personally, I thought Sucker Punch was great and definitely didn’t deserve a 22% rating which is only 2% above Transformers 2 (which in my opinion could possibly be the worse movie ever made). But I guess not everyone is into metaphorical movies you have to pay attention to decipher.

      But anyway, wether you hate Snyder’s writing or not you can’t deny his work with action scenes. I don’t see why people say Bay’s Transformers franchise has such impressive CGI action sequences. While I did enjoy the first one, the action in both that one and Revenge Of The Fallen were filmed terribly in my opinion. The robots looked good but the camera was right in front of them the whole time and all I saw was a bunch of grey, blue, red, and yellow metal flying around the screen. He didn’t fix that until this Dark Of The Moon.

      I personally think if Snyder is handed a good script, he could make a great movie.

      And did you just say Bay did a great job with the Transformers franchise? And then criticize Nolan’s “Inception”? I don’t even know what to say.

      Anyway, Snyder is attached to Superman. I think Jon Favreau would be a good choice. He did well with the Iron Man movies (even if i did find the second one a little disappointing).

      Am I the only one that would like for someone like Nolan, or Peter Jackson, or J.J. Abrams to take over? Why should they hire a bad director? This franchise is already established and even if they filmed the Transformers taking a shit for 2 hours, people would pay for it. So, why not give it a good story, AND good action? It would please everyone that way.

    • Guest

      This is NOT the end! They must come back.

    • Guest

      This is NOT the end! They must come back.

  • mothergoose

    to be honest i like the idea of mark steven johnson taking the directors chair, or tim story, and even uwe boll (just saying)

  • Amardeep Lakra

    David Yates is much better than any one so don’t include him for the franchise.

  • ozzie

    maybe with bay out of the way we can get a female character that’s more than a set of boobs … they way megan fox and rosie huntington-whiteley were portrayed as geek porn was so lame and rather insulting to females in general.

    i don’t care who makes it … i enjoy robots blowing shit up so i’ll watch it. this type of movie isn’t supposed to have depth or intricate story lines.

  • Loweherz

    Uwe Boll…case closed.

  • Nothin better to do

    I think the obvious dream choice (even though it will never happen) is to have Spielberg himself take over. But of course…it will never happen!!!!!!

    My vote would go to the gritty realism and political/cultural overtones that Blomkamp could bring to the franchise to replace Bay’s campy/cheesy cartoonish interpretation.

    But I could also imagine a choice that is 180 degrees in the opposite direction; someone that doesn’t fall into the ‘action director’ category who’s not as familiar with cgi and would be the farthest thing from an obvious choice….

    …..I want to see a Cronenberg version of Transformers. Too ridiculous??

    • dpramroop

      viggo for optimus prime

    • Quentin Lester

      Since Spielberg won’t do it, maybe he’ll turn it over to his new protege, JJ Abrams.

  • Zak Chowdhury

    How about justin Lin? I dont think he’s a particularly great director, but for what he’s done with the Fast & Furious franchise, especially that last one, he would be a pretty good choice!

    • dpramroop

      what this man say making a lot of sense. fast five was dumb but my word that movie was fun, and JL actually tries to be a better director

  • Kapow

    I could see somebody like Mike Newell getting job.
    Or how about any of these guys: Joe Carnahan, Guy Ritchie, Tony Scott, Andrew Adamson, or Bryan Singer.

  • junierizzle

    They should have given it to DEL TORO from jumpstreet.

    How about ALEX PROYAS…..

  • turk 189

    I miss the obvious choice: Steven Spielberg. Directing a Transformers movie. Nuff said!

  • Oliver

    THE WACHOWSKI BROTHERS! Yates is the only one on your list even worth mentioning

    • Harley

      I agree completely!

  • CeeJay

    Any director other than Bay will be fine…. As for plot and new lead… Perhaps they could skip a few years into near future and have Sam’s own teenage son be the new lead… With an older Sam in a minimal role portrayed by another actor. Be nice to skip a few years ahead inorder to incorporate futuristic blade runner esq cities and technologies of the future built in conjunction with the autobots. Just to make it a little more epic and believable if humans are once again supposed to take on deceptions inconjunction with their auto-buddies.

  • Book-Brain

    Can’t believe no one’s mentioned Neil Blomkamp. He would make a phenomenal Transformers film.

  • evandest


    - director : Neill Blomkamp
    - cast : Nicholas Hoult

    and Hot Rod!!!

    NICE :

    - director : Peter Berg, Joe Johnston…


    - director : Roland Emmerich or Stephen Sommers…

    • Bob

      Nicholas Hoult would be amazing as the new lead. With Neil B as director too? Too much lol. Movie would be epic.

    • Bob

      Nicholas Hoult as the lead and Neil B as director. Too much lol. Movie would be too good. Epic

  • sgt pepper

    ok first of all ppl need to stop snobbing Bay, he has given us some of the most entertaining films ever, and no Nolan is not a one trick pony inception was amazing most ppl are to freaking stupid and it went over their head and nolans first film was memento …brillaint movie, mow that being said no he is not fit to transformers , jj abrams should be the top pick but honestly how long can the story go on, leave it a trilogy or dont mess it up like lucas did our beloved star wars, we all knew that back story we didnt need 3 movies of bad acting and futuristic effects to tell us how anakin became vadar. ok so if they must make a 4th film by no means reboot, reason 1 spiderman 3 was great net nerds bitched cause he danced , well get over your self that was a great franchise and now its ruint kinda like shoemaocker ruined the batman series , tim burtons films were amazing which brings me to my point the 4th film should directed by tim burton or quientin tarrentino but tarrentino would never do it tho. so my advice to ppl stop being so stuck up and complaiming about peter parker dancing movies are for enterainment like em or not some do some dont , so net nerds get over your self

    • Quentin Lester

      My head just exploded.

    • benjamin moore

      Inception did NOT go over my head. a dream within a dream, what is “real” was he still asleep in the end….
      BORING film school garbage. Giant plot holes and silly concepts.

      When Nolan does it you all applaud him, but when Bay does it, you bring the HATE.

      Yes Nolan rebooted batman, but seriously, who couldn’t do better than Batman and Robin?

      Same with memento. Yes Nolan is a one trick pony, with a very limited style. He is Boring. ALL of his work is boring.

      You’re all too lazy to think beyond the last super hero movie you saw.
      Bay’s specialty is cinematic carnage. He IS amazing, but you hate because he didn’t adhere to TF cannon, because he went with new characters, and god forbid he cast HOT women in his movies.

      But I must be wrong, because clearly his movies make no money at all, and isn’t currently the number one 4th of July holiday opener of all time.

      • spongefist

        Finally someone who talks some sense. Inception was film school shit for clever idiots.

        Transformers and Bay – a spectacle like none I have seen before and delivered what I paid for – fun and entertainment and robots knocking seven shades of shit out of each other in a manner that looked like it was actually happening…

  • nawtnt

    Forget about Tansformers 4, TFS 3 is the last in the series.

    Transformers- Awesome.

    Transformers: ROTF- Over the top but also crap.

    Transformers: DOTM- Not as good as the first one but 100% way better than ROFT.

    If anyone would direct from the list, my choice would be Steven Spielberg or Louis Leterieer.

  • TigerClaw

    Instead of a reboot, Why not have it take place a couple of years after the 3rd film. in the G1 cartoons, Spike and Carly had a son name Daniel, So why not have the 4th be about Sam and Carly’s Son?

  • Strong Enough

    I think it was too military deep and Tyrese and Josh characters where so unnecessary. Stick with the male and female heros and the robots & cut the military out. I would make the main character a person like Kirk was in Star Trek. In his 20s and is not living up to his full potential. He’s like working at a garage while all his friends are graduating from college. I would love a DEEPER character than shia was even though I know its a transformers movie but when Shia was about to get killed by megatron I was like “go ahead kill that dude i don’t give a sh*T”. I dont know anything about transformers i never watched it as a kid (DBZ) but am sure they had space fights and fights on Cybertron. That would be kick ass to see in a film. of course you need a hot chick but that blonde chick in the first one was more perfect than megan fox. A hot chick with brains and science skills who helps the male hero out instead of just standing looking pretty would be nice as well. some of my thoughts. Just my opinion of what it should be.

  • migz13

    Just for laughs.. I’d say Chris Nolan.
    now that would be something. hahaha!:P

  • Strong Enough

    ANNNDD two words


    forgot to add that!

  • Max M13

    As long as they keep Peter Cullen as the voice of Optimus Prime and have some new classic characters from the cartoons and comics, I’m all for another sequel! Dark of the Moon was awesome!

  • Gary

    The really key thing is the Transformers as characters, its actually the core concept of Transformers, even more so than the Transforming gimmick. Trouble, Hollywood won’t do a film where robots are not cute or blowing stuff up.
    As Simon Furman said, you write them the same way you would a human character. The writers of these movies are clueless at writing the TF’s dialogue.

    Seeing as the Transformers are robots with no real gender, I would mix up the voices a bit; have some TFs with female voices (Hound, Shockwave, Prowl, etc). I must say, Gerard Butler as General Grimlock and Bruce Boxleitner as Ultra Magnus would be cool.

    Nightbeat would be such a great character to have in a TF film; an Autobot detective. Then there’s Swindle, Dead End, Sunstreaker, Beachcomber, Ratbat and a whole bunch of coliurful, classic characters.

  • Daniel

    How about just a prequel that just takes place on Cybertron? No humans, all robots.

  • Spanbauer

    Matt, wtf is this shit? Did Collider task you with writing an article riddled with jabs at the Transformers franchise, masked as a list of terrible directors? Let me say this first: Bay is not a good director, nor is he a good storyteller. But there’s but one director on that list that is actually better than Bay (David Yates), and the rest are significantly worse. Roland Emmerich? Are you freakin’ kidding? 10,000 BC makes Revenge of the Fallen look like the greatest movie ever made.

    Yes, the Transformers movie franchise is not known for deep character development. No, it is not as void of character as critics like to claim. And while it’s not to the taste of many, Bay’s films at least have some personality, which is more than I can say for many of the director’s on this list whose films are instantly forgettable. The Transformers films are also known for their stellar CGI, which many of these directors cannot deliver. Sommers, namely, delivers some of the worst CGI in hollywood. Also some of the worst performances.

    I’d like to think that maybe, just maybe, Paramount will want a director that can make a better movie than Bay. Bay’s formula has got to be about dried up. They’re going to have to start relying on more character and less action if they think they’re going to milk the franchise for another trilogy. David Yates, yes please. The rest will leave fans begging for Bay to come back.

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  • Josh

    The franchise could continue with the likes of James Cameron, Alex Proyas, Sam Raimi, The Wachowski siblings, Zack Snyder or John Woo behind the camera.

  • Spencer Ellsworth

    No Jon Favreau? He would be perfect for keeping the action, fun and good cheesiness rather than awful humor.

  • Wayne

    Wait, Wait people. How about Zack Snyder, Jon Favreau, Chris Nolan, J.J. Abrams or Brett Ratner to take the series?

    • Wayne

      Fuck it. Add my homeboy Dwayne Johnson in it this time.

  • Sean Y.

    The fact he’s tied up for a few years to come aside, James Cameron would be an interesting choice to direct a Transformers film. He can definitely handle large-scale CGI, and would make at least decent 3D. Plus, he’s better at plot and characters than Bay, so he might give us a Transformers movie with more substance.

    If nothing else, he could definitely deliver big special effects and big action scenes. Though, he’d have to get someone other than James Horner to do the score.

  • Scared for Movies

    Bay is up & down for me. I grew up with Transformers and what Bay and Spielberg made isn’t really Transformers. That said I do respect Bay’s ability with the camera but if he put as much effort into his script/storytelling as he does into his effects, Transformers would have been better served. He doesn’t know what audience he wants to make the movie for. One minute we get some lame attempt at 4th grade humor and then bam a close-up of Megan Fox’s T & A. My main gripe is that each movie is essentially the exact same plot and they do the original source material no justice. What I do find funny is that Bay said he thought Transformers was a stupid idea and never wanted to do it. Well guess what Mr.Bay it will be known as the movie that defined your career and you will grow to resent that fact. Michael Bay you have officially jumped the shark and I’m sure you will direct another Transformers movie in the future. Most of the directors on this list blow except for Yates. Don’t understand where all the hate for the Half Blood Prince comes from. My first thought was BlogKamp. And to the guy who doesn’t like Inception and Nolan…you must have a low IQ or something. Talking about plot holes in Inception and defending Transformers…ha ha ha ha. I’m sure they’ll hire some dance choreographer for the next one. That seems to be the Hollywood trend these days other than board game movies that have nothing to do with board games.

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  • OneTwo

    Funny…I was skimming this whole article and only saw 1 mention of a director that I think might be able to do something interesting with Transformers. JJ Abrams, I mean hes already worked with Paramount before on Star Trek which I personally found quite entertaining. And in general Ive found the majority of his movies to have interesting characters and pretty good development…so I figure, why not Transformers?

  • David

    Two words: Brad Bird. After MI:4 does gangbusters, Paramount should give him his 1906 earthquake film after he reboots Transformers. Nobody does stories better in my opinion and it looks like he has an eye for action.

    • Gary

      Brad Bird is the No.1 choice for me. Unlike Bay he will understand the source material.

      War Within or Hearts of Steel might be right up his alley.

  • Shrewd Manefestation

    The new wonderboy J.J. Abrams

  • Gary

    MARVEL should be making Transformers films, not Dreamworks. Marvel would actually care about the source material, because Marvel created much of the source material in the first place.

    Don’t forget it was Spielberg’s dumb idea to have Bumblebee not speak (thus making Bee into the archetypal Hollywood pet robot).

  • douchebag

    T4 might be cool if it takes place a generation later with all of the Autobots having been killed off by the Decepticons. The humans however have discovered the Robotechnology that crashed in the Pacific and are then able to fight the Transformers themselves with their own transforming machine technology.

    Merge Transformers and Robotech…and get J.J. Abrams to direct.

  • Nolan Fan

    First off Nolan doesnt fit the Transformers franchise. Though his movies have action in them, they are not action driven. Transformers is action driven. Its not meant to have some deep meaning behind it. Jon Favreau or J.J. Abrams would be perfect…

    • JareeFF

      Id be down for seeing Favreau take a swing at this. I am not sold on Abrams for this sort of series though.

  • TheArmada

    Chris Nolan. He could give the transformers franchise some much needed brains, and like Bay, he prefers to do practical effects.

  • JareeFF

    I would straight up kill to see the man behind the idea for first Transformers movie to take a swing at this , none other than Mr Steven Spielberg folks. I know it will never happen but I would sell my first born child to see him get total control over the franchise and reboot it.

    Out of the list above , Emmerich for pure sensory overload and Letterier for a chance at another “good” movie. But I dont like any of those options , we need a story and character driven guy that can pull off huge action. But cant think of any names right now.


    Joe Johnston

  • Parthi

    I think my choice may be weird but still how about SAM RAIMI ?

  • Bryan

    Jan DeBont, Len Wiseman, Justin Lin, Louis Letterier, Joe Johnston, and Alex Proyas all make sense. Paramount isn’t going to bring in a big-ticket director to take over for Bay, who will probably oversee production with Spielberg. Instead, they’ll get a hired gun who can handle the action sequences without getting overwhelmed.

    Stephen Sommers makes terrible movies. Period. That being said, if G.I. Joe hadn’t been an outright disaster, he’d be in the running. Brad Bird is an interesting pick, but a little too smart for the franchise. I’m trying to be realistic.

    What’s the worst that can happen? Even if they tabbed Renny Harlin, they’d have a blockbuster on their hands. He’s saddled with terrible material, questionable backers, and ever-diminishing clout – but Harlin directed Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, The Long Kiss Goodnight, and Deep Blue Sea. Lately, his career is a cinematic minefield, but he can deliver the goods when it comes to action.

    Just kidding. Or am I?

  • Jason

    Spielberg, Emmerich, or Howard

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  • Kieran

    i think christopher nolan who made inception and batman should do it as he has done two amazing films with amazing graphics, while on the other hand stephen spielberg could be the director as he knows what could make it better, only prob with a new one is they killed off cybertron and megatron/ allies, what more could they do?

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  • GodzillaRage

    Well out of all the suggestions for directors I didn’t see the one I thought would be good. Maybe… That would be John McTiernan. Lately it seems like McTiernan has mellowed a bit or perhaps it was the movies he chose to direct, but he hasn’t had a big hit for a while. But he has a great eye for action, good characters, and just the right amount of humor. So my vote is for John McTiernan.

  • Leo

    Am I the only one that would like for someone like Nolan, or Peter Jackson, or J.J. Abrams to take over? Why should they hire a bad director? This franchise is already established and even if they filmed the Transformers taking a shit for 2 hours, people would pay for it. So, why not give it a good story, AND good action? It would please everyone that way.

  • thx1138

    i have a candidate-my beloved dog! who has since passed on (and God bless his soul) but being that this whole enterprise is akin to selling Ivory Soap, anyone could direct it.

    better yet, just assemble a collage of images (bots, fireballs, etc.) and call it “CG Robots & Explosions”, w/the the tag line “what? you want a plot too?”. ILM could do this on a shoestring of 20 mil tops, and just watch the masses lap it all up, especially in Aisan markets.


  • dbrum

    My feelings on it is Micheal Bay Transformers films is like like Tim Burton’s Batman films. Entertaining Movies that do not take advantage of the greatness of the Source Material. I liked Bay TF trilogy but at the same time The Transformers were not used to full potential. Starscream for instance is known for being egotistical, Back stabbing, and Self serving, In Bayformers he is just a henchman to megatron who was underused and misused.

  • Phil Beta

    Neill Blomkamp was the riskiest (not so much) bet with the best yield ever. However, with Transformers being a cgi pop corn flick, I go with the directors mentioned here.

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  • anti virus

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  • Danny Boy

    People need to get out of this narrow way of thinking that a Transformers movie can only succeed as an excessive action pic with an annoying human cast taking up much of the screen time and the robots reduced to interchangeable one-dimensional markers of the film’s special fx budget. Sure, I will concede that at least the first film succeeded on that level, but there’s a dense enough 25+ year comic book mythology behind these characters for more of a thinking-man’s high budget director to come in and pull a Chris Nolan or a Rupert Wyatt on this franchise. I mean, the Transformers franchise does have more of a narrative base than what can be provided from a simple Hasbro product. We’re not talking about Battleship here.

  • ScoobyDooFTW

    Another website that has no respect whatsoever for this glorious franchise by suggesting terrible directors. Get someone who actually has a solidified grasp on storytelling or characterization, like Edgar Wright or Joss Whedon, because the cinematic Transformers need both of those elements without a doubt. I still love the movies regardless, but, as an adrenalized fan, I am fed-up with the franchise being despised and not enjoyed for the sheer awesomeness it is.

  • ScoobyDooFTW

    Another website that has no respect whatsoever for this glorious franchise by suggesting terrible directors. Get someone who actually has a solidified grasp on storytelling or characterization, like Edgar Wright or Joss Whedon, because the cinematic Transformers need both of those elements without a doubt. I still love the movies regardless, but, as an adrenalized fan, I am fed-up with the franchise being despised and not enjoyed for the sheer awesomeness it is.