Megan Fox is not returning for Transformers 3 after Paramount and director Michael Bay decided not to pick up her option for the sequel.
Deadline is reporting it “ultimately” came down to Bay’s decision and he opted to drop her. A studio spokeswoman confirmed Fox will not be back as Mikaela Banes.
Instead, Shia LaBeouf will have a new love interest that has yet to be cast. (Update: a few names have already surfaced.) Meanwhile, Bay and Ehren Kruger will finish polishing the script.
Fox ripped Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and Bay last year, saying the toy-to-movie franchise isn’t about acting and any humans are secondary to fighting robots (which is true). She also compared the director to Hitler and Napoleon, which didn’t go over so well with Bay and his ego.
He responded by saying “you have to roll your eyes” at her “very ridiculous” statements before listing off a few actors whose careers he [believes he] made, like Will Smith. A letter from three unnamed loyal crew members also trashed the 24-year-old actress, but Bay came out against it and said at the time “I even expect more crazy quotes from her on Transformers 3.”
Pre-shoots on the threequel have begun (which might explain this picture taken in May) but principal photography won’t start until this summer in Chicago, Los Angeles, Moscow, Washington D.C. and parts of Florida, Texas, Africa and China. LaBeouf is expected to return (even after his own disparaging comments) along with series regulars Tyrese Gibson and Kevin Dunn and Julie White (Sam Witwicky’s parents). Newcomers include Alan Tudyk, John Malkovich, Frances McDormand, Ken Jeong, and Patrick Dempsey. Transformers 3 is scheduled for release on July 1, 2011.
Are Fox’s fifteen minutes up? Jennifer’s Body was sold almost entirely on her appeal and flopped last September, and this summer’s Jonah Hex looks like a disaster without a potential sequel. Her erratic public behavior can’t be much help in securing new roles.