‘Transformers': Is Jason Statham Optimus Prime’s New Best Friend?

Could the “Transformers” franchise be getting a face lift, Jason Statham style?

That’s the latest rumor swirling around Hollywood, according to ShowBizSpy. With “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” making bucket loads already, it seems almost a guarantee that a fourth “Transformers” movie will be made, but the gossip site is reporting that director Michael Bay and production company Paramount are looking for someone to lead the franchise in a “new, darker direction.”

Statham certainly fits that bill (and we certainly have ideas for how he’d fit into the “Transformers” universe), but… is there any chance that this is actually going to happen? Right now, absolutely nothing is set in stone: no sequel has been officially greenlit, and definitely no one has been cast yet. But that’s not to say that the “Transformers” crew aren’t looking for a complete overhaul of the original cast to prevent the franchise from going stale. But there are a couple of other unconventional actors we could see fulfilling that order just as well as Statham. Check out our suggestions past the jump!

Michael Fassbender
After the success of “X-Men: First Class,” Michael Fassbender has become one of the hottest guys in Hollywood. Sure, he has a certain classical Hollywood charm, but that could be just the sort of credibility this transforming robots series needs. Plus, isn’t it about time the Decepticons realize they should jump continents and try destroying Europe for a change?

Taylor Lautner
Or Bay (if he returns) could go the other direction and choose a guaranteed moneymaker as his leading man. Taylor Lautner is certainly airing out his action hero suit between “Abduction” and “Incarceron,” so he could do whatever big stunts “Transformers 4″ throws at him. It helps that he has a built in franchise thanks to “The Twilight Saga,” and that he’s a definite star on the rise.

Isaiah Mustafa
We can’t picture the Old Spice guy getting dark and serious for this role, but maybe that levity will be just as much a boon for the franchise. Isaiah Mustafa has already done the action/spy thing in NBC’s “Chuck,” and we could see him lending his comedic talents well to the “Transformers” franchise. Still, we’re all about his Luke Cage campaign. That gets priority.

Would you like to see a new lead at the head of “Transformers 4,” or do you prefer Shia LaBeouf in the spotlight? Tell us in the comments section below or on Twitter!