It's a real-life Transformers battle! Well, the Decepticons and Autobots aren't involved, but the cast is. Earlier this week Hugo Weaving, voice of head-honcho Decepticon Megatron, dismissed his work on the blockbuster trilogy as "meaningless." Director Michael Bay got wind of Weaving's comments, and he's firing back.
Earlier this week, in the same Collider interview in which he expressed his reluctance to once again be the Red Skull in a future Marvel flick, Weaving talked about his work as Megatron and how little it really meant to him, in part because of the way he did the role.
"That's a weird job for me because it honestly was a two-hour voice job, initially. I was doing a play and I actually didn't have time, anyway. It was one of the only things I've ever done where I had no knowledge of it, I didn't care about it, I didn't think about it. They wanted me to do it. In one way, I regret that bit. I don't regret doing it, but I very rarely do something if it's meaningless. It was meaningless to me, honestly. I don't mean that in any nasty way. I did it. It was a two-hour voice job, while I was doing other things. Of course, it's a massive film that's made masses of money. I just happened to be the voice of one of the iconic villainous characters. But, my link to that and to Michael Bay is so minimal. I have never met him. I was never on set. I've seen his face on Skype. I know nothing about him, really. I just went in and did it. I never read the script. I just have my lines, and I don't know what they mean. That sounds absolutely pathetic! I've never done anything like that, in my life. It's hard to say any more about it than that, really."
Well, hardcore Transformers fans might not like it, but you can sort of understand what Weaving's talking about here. Unless, of course, you're Michael Bay. The director fired off an angry message from his official website Wednesday, and while he didn't name Weaving specifically, it was pretty clear who his remarks were aimed at.
"Do you ever get sick of actors that make $15 million a picture, or even $200,000 for voiceover work that took a brisk one hour and 43 minutes to complete, and then complain about their jobs? With all the problems facing our world today, do these grumbling thespians really think people reading the news actually care about trivial complaints that their job wasn't 'artistic enough' or 'fulfilling enough'? I guess The Hollywood Reporter thinks so.
"What happened to people who had integrity, who did a job, got paid for their hard work, and just smiled afterward? Be happy you even have a job - let alone a job that pays you more than 98% of the people in America.
"I have a wonderful idea for all those whiners: They can give their 'unhappy job money' to a wonderful Elephant Rescue. It's the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust in Africa. I will match the funds they donate."
Bay seems to have a point too, even if things do get a bit rambly by the time he gets to the "Take your money and shut up, or use it to save an elephant" bit of the post. Weaving is paid handsomely for such things, but can you really blame an actor for not being fulfilled when he voices a giant robot for a director he never even gets to meet?
Whose side do you come down on? Does Weaving get credit for being honest, or do you agree with Bay that he should take his money and shut up?