Michael Bay Talks about Autobot Drift’s Samurai Design and More!

Transformers director, Michael Bay, sat down for an interview with The Japan Times to talk about how he came up with the design for Autobot Drift. In the interview Bay explains how he didn’t want to have a cliched look for the Decepticon turned Autobot; so instead of styling him after the knights of old he decided to design him as a samurai because he felt as if it would be a more modern/robotic appearance.

“You put a medieval knight in front of the camera and it now looks (a bit) cliched, it looks outdated,” Bay says. “But the samurai look, of course we know it’s historical yet it looks so modern.” 

The “modern samurai” look is evident in “Transformers: Age of Extinction,” literally in the character of Drift (voiced by Ken Watanabe) and in a broader sense because the CGI robot cast is based on a line of toys out of Japan that was popular in the 1980s.

“You look at some of the older Japanese movies with samurai characters in them and you can visualize them as robotic,” Bay says. “They look . . . streamlined, mechanical and practical.”

Not only did Bay talk about Drift’s character design, but he also talked about how, in coming back to the franchise, he doesn’t want to make the robots  look like their toys anymore. He understands the need to attract a younger audience, but he wanted to do something that would have a long-lasting appeal, and he also doesn’t wish to be tied to Transformers once he finishes with the movies.

“I understand the need to draw an audience of kids and the global considerations, but I wanted to be involved with something that had a longer-lasting, even cerebral appeal. And I don’t want to be tied — artistically or in people’s minds — to ‘Transformers’ after ‘Transformers,’ ” he says, perhaps alluding to the series’ planned fifth installment.

Other cast members of TF4  are also mentioned in this article, talking about how they are only a small part of a movie that has been so popular throughout the world and how great it makes them feel knowing that they were a part of it. You can click here to read the full article on The Japan Times website.

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