Ron Perlman Transformers Rise of the Beasts
More info i
Credit: Joe Scarnici / Getty

From Hellboy to Transformers: Ron Perlman joins 'Rise of the Beasts' as Optimus Primal

Contributed by
Jun 28, 2021, 2:11 PM EDT

Last week, Paramount Pictures revealed the next installment in the blockbuster Transformers franchise will be Transformers: Rise of the Beasts, a film primed to introduce a number of new alien robots to the big-screen incarnation of the mythology. Now, we know that one of the most important of these new characters will have a genre legend providing the voice.

Collider reported, and SYFY WIRE later confirmed, Monday that Ron Perlman -- best known to genre fans for his work in Hellboy, Pacific Rim, Beauty and the Beast, and more -- has joined Rise of the Beasts as Optimus Primal, a character he previously played in the Power of the Primes animated series.

As his name suggests, Primal is a leader like Optimus Prime, taking charge of the alien robot group known as the Maximals. First introduced in the Beast Wars era of Transformers, Primal takes the form of a massive gorilla, and took the name to honor his Autobot forebear, Optimus Prime.

Set in 1994, Rise of the Beasts is set to introduce several of the Maximals Beast Wars fans remember to the big screen, as well as members of the Terrorcons, the Predacons, and the film's new main villain, the Unicronian Decepticon known as Scourge.

Actors Anthony Ramos (In The Heights) and Dominique Fishback (Judas and the Black Messiah) have already signed on for major roles in the film, but Perlman is the first big new addition to the voice cast of the franchise for Rise of the Beasts. Steven Caple Jr. (Creed II) will direct from a script by Darnell Metayer and Josh Peters.

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts is in theaters June 24, 2022.