It’s ludicrously warm for October and Total Film is feeling clammy and uncomfortable. But Lorenzo di Bonaventura, producer of Constantine and the upcoming Doom, is cooler than a penguin on an ice cap as he chats about reinstating cinematic escapism to its rightful place in the world, via the as-yet untitled Transformers movie.
“I just read 85 pages this morning and I think we’re in very good shape,” di Bonaventura raves, before confirming that Michael Bay will indeed be on directing duties. “It’s in pre-production right now; there are some assets being assembled as we wait for the script.”
So, with a million critical eyes from the ever-so-slightly obsessive Transformer fan-world aimed in his direction, is he feeling the pressure? “We have a very avid fan base who we must respect, but we also have to make a movie that people who didn’t play with Transformers can relate to,” says di Bonaventura, previously production chief at Warner Bros and now a full-time producer. “Because we can’t deal with each person who has a point of view, we’ve used the people who we think know the most about them – which in this case is Hasbro, who are the makers of Transformers. We’re using them as our sounding board.”
As one of the key players behind the hotly anticipated adap of videogame blast-em-up Doom, di Bonaventura reckons he’s nailed the secret to making movies inspired by other sources of entertainment. “A lot of movies that have been translated from another form have screwed up because they didn’t consult the standard bearers or the standard bearers didn’t understand and embrace the notion that these are two different mediums,” he nods sagely. “In either case you tend to produce a bad movie.”
At this point an over-excited Total Film points out that we know our Gobots from our Decepticons and should he require a fresh perspective, he has our number. “I like that,” di Bonaventura laughs. “What about GI Joe then? Were you into that?” Er, we may have an Action Man with bendable wrists tucked away somewhere. Do we sense a possible project based on the all-American hero boy-doll? Watch this space…