3RD UPDATE: Megan As Cautionary Tale: Is Shia Heeding?
2ND UPDATE, 8 PM: I can tell you that this new statement from Megan Fox’s PR flack about why the actress won’t be appearing in Transformers 3 is absolutely untrue: “It was her decision not to return. She wishes the franchise the best.” What a pantload. I stand by my scoop that Paramount and Michael Bay kicked her to the curb by not picking up her option to do the threequel.
UPDATE 7 PM: Here are just some of the replacements you’ve suggested: Scarlett Johansson, Mila Kunis, Blake Lively, Amanda Seyfried, Miley Cyrus, Hillary Duff, Isla Fisher, Amber Heard, Zoe Saldana, and a bunch of actresses I’ve never heard of. And, of course, Shia’s real-life girlfriend Carey Mulligan. And the omnipresent Taylor Lautner.
EXCLUSIVE 1:45 PM: I’ve just learned that Paramount won’t be picking up Megan Fox’s option on Transformers 3 — and that it was “ultimately” director Michael Bay’s decision. (So he gets his revenge for her remark comparing him to “Hitler”.) Right now Bay and writer Ehren Kruger et al are finishing up the script for the threequel and “giving Shia a new love interest makes more sense for the story,” an insider tells me. Bay will start casting immediately for the new female co-star. Let’s hear your suggestions, readers…
So did Megan deserve to get fired? I say yes. No actor/actress can expect to go around dissing a director and expect to work together as if nothing happened. Much less the egotistical Bay. But in Fox, he had met his match. Why, as recently as this week Megan was quoted as dissing Bay yet again. In recent months she has shown off a more natural skin hue instead of her usual orange color — and blamed the Transformers helmer for her unhealthy tanning binge. “I had been tanning a lot so that Michael would be happy with my skin tone. Every spare moment of sun that was outside, I had to be in it,” the 24-year-old actress lamented in Allure magazine. “It’s not going to happen again because of the damage and the possible skin cancer.”
This is without doubt a huge blow to Megan’s career, already damaged by her inability to open Twentieth’s Fox Atomic film Jennifer’s Body last September. The R-rated feminist horror flick did a pathetic $6.8M weekend for a script by Juno‘s Diablo Cody for a domestic total of only $16.2M and a worldwide take of just $31.5M. And talk about bad timing: right now she’s doing publicity for her role in Jonah Hex to be released June 18th. Guess what everyone will ask her?
Nevertheless, my news today comes a shocker because back in October Bay announced that he had scheduled Transformers 3 for July 1st, 2011, and made a point to archly warn Megan personally about the rigors of this new installment:
“P.S. Megan Fox, welcome back. I promise no alien robots will harm you in any way during the production of this motion picture. Please consult your Physician when working under my direction because some side effects can occur, such as mild dizziness, intense nausea, suicidal tendencies, depression, minor chest hair growth, random internal hemorrhaging and inability to sleep. As some directors may be hazardous to your health, please consult your Doctor to determine if this is right for you.”
In case you’ve forgotten, Megan promoted Jennifer’s Body in Wonderland magazine by accusing Bay of wanting to “create this insane, infamous mad-man reputation. He wants to be like Hitler on his sets, and he is. So he’s a nightmare to work for.” That ignited a firestorm of criticism of her. I broke the story when 3 “loyal” members of Bay’s Transformers franchise crew asked his website to post their response to Fox. They detailed why she‘s the nightmare. (I love when there’s honesty in Hollywood.) Here’s that missive, again:
This is an open letter to all Michael Bay fans. We are three crew members that have worked with Michael for the past ten years. Last week we read the terrible article with inflammatory, truly trashing quotes by the Ms. Fox about Michael Bay. This letter is to set a few things straight. (more…)