Paramount has debuted the first teaser trailer for Transformers: The Last Knight. While the timing is tied in with Rogue One: A Star Wars Story which opens on the evening of Dec. 15, this trailer may well play in front of theatrical prints of Paramount’s Office Christmas Partywhich is the lone wholly new wide release. I say “wholly new” because Miss Sloane and Nocturnal Animals are expanding on Friday, but I digress.
The trailer is narrated by Anthony Hopkins and spends most of its time setting the stage, emphasizing the humans over the machines. But the final montage brings the expected kaboom, concluding with a stunning character confrontation that will probably look absolutely jaw-dropping on an IMAX screen.
This is the second trailer in a row to center itself around a genuine question in terms of its would-be protagonist. Yesterday we found out that Tom Cruise is apparently “undead” and may be the mummy of the title. And today, Optimus Prime may have stared too long into the abyss, if you know what I mean. Kudos to the Paramount and Universal marketing teams for doing more than just “Here’s what we got and look at all of the spectacle!” initial teases.
Michael Bay’s fifth Transformers movie is set for release on June 23, 2017, which was supposed to be the release date for Wonder Woman before Paramount laid claim and Warner Bros. (understandably) fled to June 2. This is the same weekend where Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen(which debuted on a Wednesday with a $200 million Wed-Sun debut) and Transformers: Age of Extinction (which debuted with a $100m Fri-Sun debut) opened in 2009 and 2014.
In 2009, Transformers 2 was the biggest movie of the summer back when a $400 million+ domestic total was still a jaw-dropping achievement. In 2014, Transformers 4 was the only film of the year to top $1 billion worldwide. So, even if this fifth film plays closer to the $245m domestic finish of Age of Extinction as opposed to the $352m domestic finish of Transformers: Dark of the Moon, it is likely that the film will end up being one of the bigger global grossers of the summer if not the year.