‘Transformers’ Spinoff ‘Bumblebee’ Finds Director in ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ Helmer

Travis Knight Bumblebee
Stephen Lovekin/WWD/REX/Shutterstock

Travis Knight is moving on from stop animation to try his hand at live action as the Laika CEO has been tapped to direct the “Transformers” spinoff “Bumblebee.”

The movie would mark his live-action directorial debut after helming the Oscar-nominated “Kubo and the Two Strings” for Laika last year. Paramount was clearly eyeing someone with an animated background as execs also met with “Lego Batman” director Chris McKay. The studio had no comment.

While plot details are still unknown, the story will focus on the popular character who has appeared in all of Michael Bay’s “Transformers” films.


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Bay, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, Brian Goldner, Stephen Davis and Steven Spielberg are producing. Christina Hodson penned the script after joining the “Transformers” writers’ room last year, where the studio began fleshing out ideas for other movies contained in the “Transformers” universe, but not necessarily set along the franchise timeline.

Knight, who’s the son of Nike CEO Phil Knight, has helped create a force in the animation world with his Laika Studios, which delivered such classic stop-animation pics as “Kubo and the Two Strings,” “ParaNorman,” “The Boxtrolls,” and “Coraline.”

He is repped by CAA. Deadline Hollywood first reported the news.

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  1. Reebok says:

    Rich kid fails yet again…The Travis Knight Story

  2. Alex Meyer says:

    Really?! This guy goes from getting an Oscar nomination for Kubo And The Two Strings to directing a Transformers spinoff?!!?!?!?!?! Just why would he risk his reputation like this?!?!?!?!?!?! How much money was waved in his face?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

    • Why did Disney risk their reputation by buying companies known for buff men in skintight color suits and glowing sword gibberish space wizards?

    • Nick says:

      His daddy bought him an animation studio (which has yet to turn a profit and is a giant, gaping hole of a money-losing venture). Kubo was nice from a craft point of view, but the story/characterizations/and directing were pedestrian at best.

      BTW, his daddy owns Nike.

  3. That's What She says:

    A stop motion Transformers movie would melt so many faces, it could be construed as a weapon of mass awesome. But no.. live action. Wom wom. Don’t let Paramount push you around too much, Mr. Knight.

  4. Good luck to him, Kubo was magnificently directed and conceived so hopefully he can elevate this too.

  5. Mark says:

    Oh god, no. This sounds awful.

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