Hasbro has found a lot of success with their toy properties-turned-live-action-blockbusters in the form of Transformers and G.I. Joe. The former has become a multi-billion dollar franchise that's currently in its fifth installment with a planned cinematic universe built around it.
The latter found some trouble taking off as a proper franchise. After G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra a sequel was released in 2013 titled G.I. Joe: Retaliation. While it had a decent run financially, the movie did not fare well critically, leaving a futureinstallment in uncertainty.
For years now, Paramount's been trying to tie its two franchises together in a massive cinematic universe, similar to Marvel's and DC's, which would involve having the Transformers battling alongside characters like Snake Eyes.
Their first step to achieve this was hiring director D.J. Carusso to helm G.I. Joe 3. The movie was ultimately put on hold, but now we have an idea of what it could have been. While promoting his upcoming blood-pumping, Vin-Diesel-starring xXx: The Return of Xander Cage, Carusso revealed to Collider his vision for the cancelled film, which would have kicked off Hasbro's brand new cinematic universe:
“Before I started this movie I had a couple meetings with Dwayne and the studio about what could happen with G.I. Joe. The franchise has been fairly successful, but there’s something about it that’s just not fully, fully clicking.”
When asked about whether having the Transformers meeting G.I. Joe was the missing ingredient to make the franchise "click", the director responded with:
“Well yeah but they’re not ready to do [G.I. Joe meets Transformers] yet. That’s exactly what they should do but they’re not ready to do that because in fact the script that I was developing, the two worlds sort of collided at the end and when they read it they were like, ‘We’re not ready to do this yet.’… They will eventually collide those two worlds and it’s probably when Mr. Bay decides he’s done with Transformers.”
Paramount not being ready to kick off their cinematic universe could be due to them restructuring the Transformers franchise to widen its scope and be more faithful to the source material. However, even though Paramount is being very cautious about launching this new saga, we have to wonder...
Would A Transformers/G.I. Joe Crossover Make Sense?
While I have yet to find enjoyment in the Transformers and G.I. Joe movies, there's a possibility for success; so the short answer is, yes. There's a reason why every single entry of Transformers keeps getting panned but manages to pull impressive numbers at the box office: Spectacle.
These movies' target audience don't go into them expecting a complex story with rich characters. They go because of nostalgia and the chance to have pure fun by watching armored guys or morphing robots beat the living snot out of each other.
Combining the two franchises could be a draw for nostalgic audiences looking for that type of entertainment.
With that said people are incredibly unpredictable, and in today's world, when everything is getting a sequel or remake, there's a big risk that it could become a financial flop due to the overabundance of movies in its genre.
Is There Any Hope For It?
Going by Carusso's statement, Paramount is still actively looking to continue their ambitious cinematic universe. Here's what he said regarding how far along his version of the film was and the possibility of him returning to the project:
“It came close but I think what the studio was trying to do was reassess it and so now they’re back to the drawing board, and we’ll be talking again about it. It’s a valuable franchise—[it’s] not that they didn’t get it right, they just wanna really get it right and see if they can push it to the next level.”
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While it doesn't tell us anything about the quality of the project, hopefully the people at Paramount come up with a good product that manages to recapture the interest of people who've lost it after so many movies and also attract new fans.
Would you like a Transformers/G.I. Joe crossover?