LAS VEGAS — Although Dwayne Johnson, Will Arnett and Mark Walhberg all presented their respective films, “Hercules,” “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” and “Transformers: Age of Extinction” at the Paramount presentation Monday night at CinemaCon, it was really the Michael Bay show.
As the director of “Transformers” and a producer on both “Ninja Turtles” and the just-announced found footage pic “Project Almanac,” due at the end of January 2015, Bay was the star, and he wasn’t even in the house.
“Michael Bay is committed to making sure young audiences have a reason to flock back to your theaters,” said Rob Moore, vice chairman of Paramount.
The multi-hyphenate is currently in the edit room for “Transformers,” according to the movie’s star, Wahlberg. His daughter, 10-year-old Ella accompanied Nicola Peltz and Jack Reynor, two of the films stars that Wahlberg ensured the audience would be huge by the time it debuts in June.
“I feel like (‘Transformers’) is the most iconic franchise in movie history,” Wahlberg said during the presentation and guaranteed the audience that it was a standalone film.
About 10 minutes of “Transformers” was shown, including the resurrection of several transformers and Stanley Tucci holding a serious grudge.
In addition to “Transformers,” Bay is producing “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” which is based more on the comic book than the children’s TV series and posits the green amphibians as a gang of superheroes, with Megan Fox as the damsel in distress.
“It’s a daunting task given how rabid the fanbase is,” said Will Arnett, who stars as Vernon Fenwick and arrived via Segway onstage along with comedian David Cross.
Arnett also pointed out that the Ninja Turtles have been the No. 1 action figure for the last six straight years.
Drumming up social media buzz, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, detailed his journey to transform into Hercules, the Greek demigod. Up until Monday’s presentation, the star claimed no one had ever seen his face in character.
As the highest-grossing actor of 2013, Johnson said he wanted to “bring fans along on my journey through social media.” That included his involvement on platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, posting behind the scenes photos and first looks, something he cleared with MGM and Paramount beforehand.
“Hair, makeup, a prosthetic penis,” he joked, detailing the process of getting into character.
Sneak peeks of Rupert Wyatt’s “The Gambler” and Christopher Nolan’s “Interstellar” and Oprah’s historical pic “Selma” were also shown.