Steven Caple Jr. Explains the Hasbro Crossover in ‘Transformers: Rise of the Beasts’: ‘You Could Go Any Direction’

[Editor’s Note: The following article contains major spoilers for “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts.”]

Robotic gorillas and ’90s needle drops weren’t the only changes to the “Transformers” franchise introduced in the new prequel “Rise of the Beasts.” The film ends with a surprise appearance from Michael Kelly as a military officer attempting to recruit Anthony Ramos’ Noah to join him in an intergalactic war. The secret agency he works for? G.I. Joe.

The scene has been seen by many as the start of a Hasbro Cinematic Universe that could unite the “Transformers” and “G.I. Joe” brands in a larger story. In a new interview with Uproxx, director Steven Caple Jr. explained the decision to cast Kelly in the pivotal role and teased what could be next for the two toy franchises.

“We wanted to make sure whoever we use isn’t like a full-blown Nick Fury,” Caple said. “When you start to do the compare and contrast to the other franchise. So, for me, it just felt like there was a way to bring in Michael. He’s a phenomenal actor. And so to have him in the mix and be able to build a team out would’ve been really cool. But you could go any direction with him. If he wanted to be a villain, if he wanted to be a good guy, if he wanted to be down for the cause, you just don’t know. So he just felt valuable that way.”

Caple made it clear that he hopes to be heavily involved in building out the new cinematic universe, which would begin with a rebooted cast of “G.I. Joe” characters entering the world of “Transformers.”

“Yes. 100 percent. That is my plan for sure,” he said when asked about rebooting the “G.I. Joe” franchise while continuing to work on “Transformers” movies. “I think that’s one we have to wait on. But I’m always ‘Transformers.’ I want to say always ‘Transformers.’ But, I mean, between you and I, I know you’ll read this later, but when you look at it, there is a Transformer, G.I. Joe collaboration in the comic books. And I read it years ago and I thought this idea would always been cool. So I’m not going to say I’m staying true to that storyline, but the fact that it was more so ‘G.I. Joe’ stepping into their world was interesting to me.”

“Transformers: Rise of the Beasts” is now playing in theaters.

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