Interviews & Articles
When the movie blockbuster `Transformers', directed by Michael Bay and produced by Steven Spielberg, hits our screens it will not just be the robotic stars of the film that will catch your attention.
The film's human stars include Josh Duhamel, Shia LeBeouf and 21-year-old Megan Fox in her first major feature role as Mikaela, a high school student reluctantly dragged into the battle between two alien races, the Autobots and the Decepticons, when they bring that battle to Earth. The Tennessee native lives in Los Angeles.
What was your first reaction when you heard about this movie and the possibility of getting involved?
When I heard they were casting the movie, my first thought was, `how are they going to make this film?' when it's all about robots and it's a very intricate process of transforming, from what I'd seen in the cartoons. So I was more curious about it than anything else because I didn't really think I had a chance of being involved in a movie like this but over the course of a month I continued to audition and when I finally got the role, I was incredibly excited.
So you were familiar with the cartoon series?
It was on when I was a little kid so I remember seeing it back in the late 1980s but I couldn't have named all of the Autobots and all of the Decepticons before now - now I'm an expert!
What can you tell us about your character Mikaela?
She is a high school student who is accidentally sucked into this battle between these alien races of robots and she hopes to fight on the team of the good guys with the Autobots against the Decepticons. She's a little bit of a tomboy but my character is in high school so she is still innocent as well.
What happens to her during the course of the film?
She goes through a journey too. She starts off with a boyfriend who is the typical jock and she realizes that is not who she wants to be with after she meets Sam and they are thrown into this battle together and through the course of the film she begins to develop a relationship with him.
What was it like to work with Shia LeBeouf?
I didn't know him personally but I'd seen the show he did on Disney, Even Stevens, and I always thought he was so funny from that because it's not often you see those shows and want to watch them as an adult. When I auditioned for this movie it was the first time I actually met him and he's been awesome to work with and get to know.
Do you feel like you both share this experience of making a movie that will change your life?
We talked about it every day on set, about how this movie is so huge.
How did you handle acting opposite the robots when they are not there?
They would have poles to represent each of the robots but they would be correct in height so depending on how tall each of the robots is would be how tall the pole would be that we were interacting with. At night they would attach glowing red balls on the very top of the poles to represent the eye line, so we could imagine where the face would be. It actually become really fun except for the emotional scenes, where we'd have emotional dialogue with the robots that were just poles, and that was the most difficult part of the film for me.
There is a lot of humor in the film. What about on the set?
Every scene there was an opportunity to have a laugh. Shia is a comedian and used to do stand-up comedy so he is amazing at improvisation and he would do that in every single take of every scene and I was laughing a lot. He would get into a scene and know the basic premise of the scene and all the dialogue in the middle would change from take to take and he'd add different jokes or other things he'd say as his character that were extremely funny.
Did you meet Steven Spielberg?
I met him one day on the set, and I couldn't believe I was shaking his hand because he's Steven Speilberg.
How was Michael Bay to work with?
He was a great director and really patient and I admire him for all he's done in this business, but the secret is… he's actually really funny.
How did you find the balance with the logistics of the action and standing in the right spot and the emotional content?
It's a difficult thing to do. Standing on our marks didn't really exist because we never really stood still in this film. It was such a heavy action movie that we were constantly running and panting and out of breath and most of our scenes involved stuff like that, so it is hard to mix the emotion in with all the difficult action but you find your way.
Did you get injured on the film with all the action sequences?
I was so active and doing gymnastics when I was very young that I've always had a bad back so I slipped a disc in one scene. I was doing a stunt with Shia where we were attached by our belt to this contraption that was spinning us around for about 30 minutes and by the time we were finished my back was a mess and I had to go see a specialist. And also lost a toenail because of the running and action I was doing in new motorcycle boots but being a dancer, I've lost toenails before so it wasn't too bad.
Were you comfortable with all the action stuff in the film?
It was fun and incredibly overwhelming but in a good way.