You would think that Michael Bay, director of this week's hot summer blockbuster "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen," would be taking advantage of some well-earned downtime as audiences flock to see giant fighting robots and s--t blowing up. Maybe he is. But that's not all he's doing.
Variety reports that Bay is in place to produce and possibly direct a book-to-movie adaptation of "I Am Number Four," the first in a six-book sci-fi series. The deal is with Dreamworks; studio stakeholder Steven Spielberg is expected to be active "in a behind-the-scenes capacity, similar to the godfather role he has played in the 'Transformers' franchise."
As if that's not enough, a source also says that controversial "A Million Little Pieces" author James Frey is one of two authors putting pen to paper for the series. The New York Times reveals that someone who is "familiar with the project" credits Frey for conceiving the series. The Times article also states that a cover letter accompanying the as-yet-unpurchased manuscript bills "Number Four" as being the work of "an unnamed New York Times best-selling author and a young up-and-coming writer."
The story follows nine alien teenager on the planet Lorien. When an alien race attacks, the nine teens "and their guardians" flee to the relative safety of Earth. It's only "relative" because someone is hunting and killing the escaped aliens. The fourth on the list -- now the title makes sense -- is a young boy named John Smith (uhhh...?), who has disguised himself as a human in the sleepy town of Paradise, Ohio.
The Times report describes the work as young adult-oriented, so expect a lighter tone than the above description may suggest. With Bay and Spielberg are both involved, I can envision "Number Four" delivering a spectacle on par with the likes of "Men in Black" or the entertaining-but-flawed "War of the Worlds."
Tell me how this equation computes for you: Bay + Spielberg + Frey = ??? The mind boggles. Does the idea sound cool to you? Would you prefer to see Bay tackle "Transformers 3" first/at all?