Michael Bay told anyone who would listen that three ‘Transformers’ movies were enough for him. Maybe we shouldn’t have believed him.

According to Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner, the company is “actively discussing” Bay’s return for the blockbuster franchise’s fourth outing, which could film back-to-back with ‘Transformers 5.’ 

As recently as a few months ago, Bay claimed he’d be scaling back for his next project, the true-life kidnapping thriller ‘Pain & Gain.’ But nothing cures blockbuster exhaustion like a hefty payday, and given that the first three ‘Transformers’ films have grossed more than $2.6 trillion, it sounds like Hasbro is willing to do whatever it takes to lure Bay back to the director’s chair — and secure the involvement of Steven Spielberg, who produced the original trilogy.

While efforts are being made to reunite the ‘Transformers’ team behind the scenes, it seems certain that the next sequels will go forward without original leading man Shia LaBeouf. Action hero Jason Statham is the current rumored favorite to take over, which would definitely add a grittier vibe to the ongoing battle between the Autobots and the Decepticons.

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