"Transformers 3" and director Michael Bay are in the news today because plans to shoot part of the movie in Washington, D.C. -- including "simulated explosions and pyrotechnics at locations along Pennsylvania and Independence avenues" (via The Washington Post) -- are being met with some resistance by National Park Service authorities. Apparently there's some hesitation about staging massive explosions so close to the country's seats of power. Go figure.
I imagine that Bay will get his way eventually -- likely a compromise -- especially with the added weight of producer Steven Spielberg backing him up. That said, we're a creative team here at MTV and we've got a few alternate locations to suggest using in lieu of the National Mall.
Times Square, New York City
New York City is perceived by many, particularly those who live there, to be the capital of the world. Allowing that as a truth, we can go one step further and call Times Square the world capital's nerve center. Can you imagine the sight of Megatron, perched on the balcony above MTV's former TRL studio, bellowing threats at Optimus Prime and his Autobot cohorts? Or picking up the New Year's ball and chucking it at Bumblebee? I can. And it's a scene that is made of awesome.
Hollywood, Los Angeles
Picture it. Giant robots clashing across LA's urban sprawl, leveling Universal Studios, the Hollywood sign, the Capitol Records building. Miraculously, Paramount's properties survive the destruction, are in fact left untouched. Must be dumb luck.
The Strip, Las Vegas
This one's easy. Everything on the Las Vegas Strip is already larger-than-life. Insert robots and the requisite amount of Bayhem... now that's blockbuster entertainment. Hell, at the rate casinos rise and fall in that town, the shoot could even be used as a convenient opportunity to destroy the next structure to be leveled. Please let it be Circus Circus...
The Lost City of Atlantis
I don't know what sort of plot conceit could be introduced that would take the extraterrestrial robots to the ocean floor, but an undersea scrap in the fabled sunken city of Atlantis would be mighty cool. No need to worry about property damage or loss of human life, not unless there's some kind of Marvel crossover cooked up. Namor, the Sub-Mariner, versus Starscream? Yeah, I'd pay to see that.
Enough with the human element in this series. Let's not forget what "Transformers" is really all about: watching giant robots pound the crap out of other giant robots. So let's just give up the ghost and take the action to their homeworld already.