Speaking to Polygon, director Travis Knight stated that he wants to keep his studio (Laika) and the Transformers Franchise separately while mentioning that he is unsure to return to direct a possible Bumblebee 2.
He also mentioned that he is unsure if the Transformers live action movies will take a new direction altogether.
“It was SUCH a huge thrill for me to bring those characters that I’ve loved since I was a kid to life in the way that I’ve always wanted to see them on the big screen,” Knight told Polygon. Bumblebee devotes most of the adventure to Bee and Charlie warding off the Decepticons on Earth, but the opening is energon ecstasy, picking up mid-battle between classic G1-designed bots. “I was just giddy … And, look, if I was going to go to Cybertron, I was going to pepper that thing with as many of these characters that I’ve loved as possible.”
Knight says it’s unclear if he’ll return to do a second Bumblebee movie or if the Transformers will take a new direction altogether (months before the release of Bay’s final installment, The Last Knight, Paramount Pictures assembled a “writer’s room” to hammer out the beats of what was imagined as a series of interlocked Transformers films a la the Marvel Cinematic Universe, though no additional films beyond Bumblebee were put into production let alone announced). One thing he’s firm about: he won’t be bringing the Transformers franchise through Laika’s doors.
“Everything that I’ve done at Laika reflects a certain philosophy or filmmaking philosophy,” Knight says. “I don’t see that fundamental thing changing moving forward.”
Knight says he loves the variety of what Laika’s no-limits approach has to offer. He loves “tapping into different genres and trying to apply our prism to the world,” so he doesn’t see a Transformers movie, or any major IP, being part of the future. The studio’s next film, Missing Link, due this spring, is an adventure film that whisks us away to Shangri-La and centers on a bigfoot-like creature. Yes, Travis Knight loves Transformers, but that’s only one gear under the hood.
“I’m excited to tell an interesting new and original stories at my animation house … To the extent that you channel things that you love from your childhood loves and obsessions into what we do, I think that’s part of everything that we do.”
We wish Mr. Knight, best of luck for his future endeavors.