Bumblebee is finally buzzing this way.
Paramount Pictures has unveiled the first teaser trailer for Bumblebee, the forthcoming spinoff from the studio’s robot-filled, action-packed, formerly Shia LaBeouf-starring Transformers film franchise. This time around, Paramount has swapped the explosion-loving Michael Bay, who directed the first five films (from 2007’s Transformers to 2017’s Transformers: The Last Knight), for LAIKA CEO and Kubo and the Two Strings filmmaker Travis Knight, who makes his live-action directorial debut with Bumblebee.
Set in the 1980s, Bumblebee sees the eponymous yellow Autobot befriend a tomboy teen named Charlie Watson, played by Pitch Perfect franchise star Hailee Steinfeld, who discovers him in a California junkyard. Charlie takes Bumblebee, seen in his Volkswagen Beetle form as he appeared on the 1980s Transformers cartoon, to the auto shop where she works, nurses him back to health, and shines him up to his former glory — all the while learning that the cutesy car she found herself in possession of is far more than just an ordinary VW Bug.
According to director Knight, Bumblebee will carry a tone distinct from the other Transformers series installments — and the teaser trailer proves that, showing off the sweeter, gentler, coming-of-age-story side of the franchise.
“I wanted to approach this massive, expansive franchise and really focus in on a tiny corner of the canvas,” Knight told Empire. “Everything I’ve tried to do at LAIKA, searching for an artful blend of darkness and light, intensity and warmth, humor and heart, I wanted to bring to the Transformers franchise.”
Check out the first Bumblebee trailer above, and take a look at the film’s newest poster below.
Written by Christina Hodson (Shut In), Bumblebee also stars John Cena, Jorge Lendeborg Jr., Rachel Crow, Pamela Adlon, Jason Drucker, Abby Quinn, Gracie Dzienny, Ricardo Hoyos, Kenneth Choi, Stephen Schneider, John Ortiz, and Martin Short. Peter Cullen will lend his voice to Optimus Prime for the movie as well.
Here’s the official plot synopsis for Bumblebee, if official plot synopses are your thing: “On the run in the year 1987, Bumblebee finds refuge in a junkyard in a small Californian beach town. Charlie (Hailee Steinfeld), on the cusp of turning 18 and trying to find her place in the world, discovers Bumblebee, battle-scarred and broken. When Charlie revives him, she quickly learns this is no ordinary, yellow VW bug.”
Bumblebee, the first entry in Paramount’s planned Transformers spinoff film series, will open on December 21.
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