Everybody’s Favorite Director Michael Bay Signs Huge Deal With Sony

Published on March 30, 2020

Michael Bay is the king of explosions, the firebreather of cinema, and the ADHD filmmaker of the 21st Century. Bay is a technical wizard as a filmmaker and a total teenage bro as a storyteller. He’s so great and terrible at the same time. One of the most successful directors of our time recently directed his slowest movie to date for Netflix, 6 Underground, but Bay’s name will return to cinemas. The love-him-or-hate-him director has signed a new deal with Sony.

The Deal

According to Deadline, BayFilms has closed a multiyear first look deal with Sony Pictures. The deal involves both film and television. Before studios started shutting down due to the coronavirus, Bay and Sony got the deal practically done in January. Bay has produced television in the past, such as Starz’s Black Sails, but never produced a wide range of TV. With a new Sony deal, maybe that’ll change. It’d be nice to see Bay bring his scale and style to a TV show for once and see how it translates to that medium. 

A Michael Bay Drama?!

The craziest piece of news from this Bay-Sony deal: he’s working on a drama. All we know is it’s an “ensemble drama.” Is this inaccurate? It sounds like it. The title is Black Five, which with Bay’s name attached, sounds more like an action movie. Is Bay of all filmmakers trying his hand at a straight drama? What would that even begin to look like? Now, maybe it’s just a more dramatic Bay movie, like the Michael Bay Benghazi movie. Still can’t believe that movie even exists some days. We saw real life horrors and pain through Bay’s lens, and his style wasn’t right for it. Too much Bayhem. 

Michael Bay… Grows Up?

With a more serious, grounded drama, what would Bay have to say? What are his views on life, relationships, and love? Imagine discovering all those answers in a drama from Bay. The idea has us a little excited, obviously, but Bay is teaming up with a frequent collaborator of his, Ehren Kruger. Kruger wrote several of the Transformers sequels… 

Together, Bay and Kruger don’t produce great work, despite how many people watch it. With Kruger involved, that casts doubt Bay is actually making a pure drama. Then again, Kruger wrote Arlington Road. It’s an excellent thriller with equally fine drama and suspense. Maybe Kruger could write a more grounded thriller for Bay like that one. 

What Happened with 6 Underground? 

Bay could definitely stretch himself with his next movie. 6 Underground was like a terrible greatest hits collection of Bay’s past work. It was more of his worst instincts than his best ones. A few action sequences were impressive in scale, sure, but the whole experience was exhausting on Netflix. Then again, over 100 million people watched it and it was Netflix’s second biggest movie last year. It was a hit, no question. Most of Michal Bay’s worst movies are, though. 

He’s the McDonalds of filmmakers. Almost everyone will eat what he has serves up. Through his ferocious, in-your-face, and dumb and loud American style of storytelling, he’s managed to connect with people all over the world. Bay knows the taste of the average consumer. Good or bad, there’s no mistaking a Michael Bay movie. By returning to Sony, he’s returning to his roots in a way. The studio is where he got his start as a filmmaker, having directed the first two Bad Boys movies for them.

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Jack Giroux is a Staff Writer at Grit Daily. Based in Los Angeles, he is an entertainment journalist who's previously written for Thrillist, Slash Film, Film School Rejects, and The Film Stage.

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