This is an interesting year for the Transformers franchise. While the comics remain flat out brilliant, the movies are working very hard on managing to be commercially successful and good at the same time. We’ll see the first fruits of that success with The Last Knight in a few weeks (AUTOBOT!KNIGHTS!OF THE ROUND TABLE!) but the next big movie due is also something of a departure. It’s a solo feature, focusing on everyone’s favorite yellow sample-talking pugilist, Bumblebee.
The movie portray of Bee has been a little erratic. Not ‘Optimus Prime, Murderbot’ level erratic thank the Maker but still, he’s either been unable to talk, chooses not, painfully fragile or the toughest of the tough depending on what the script needs. It’ll be interesting to see how that settles down when he’s in the spotlight. Even more interesting is the fact that Travis Knight, who directed the wonderful Kubo And The Two Strings, is directing this one, from a script by Christina Hodson.
Now, the movie has it’s leading lady. THR have confirmed that Hailee Steinfeld has signed on to play a character described as a ‘tomboy who holds down a job as a mechanic after school’. Any one who saw Monster Trucks, all three of us, will find that familiar but that’s really a good thing. While the rest of the movie is being kept under wraps that sort of character is always fun and gender flipping it like this has a lot of potential. Plus Steinfeld is fantastic. She’s got incredible natural comic timing and if all this movie is Bee and her arguing then it’s still going to be more fun than Rise Of The Fallen.
The Bumblebee solo movie currently has no title but is on deck for a 8 June 2018 release. More when we have it. In the meantime, check out Steinfeld’s barnstorming lead turn in the brilliant and magnificently NSFW Edge of Seventeen and go take a look at the IDW comics series Robots in Disguise for an idea of just how much fun you can have with Bumblebee as a character.