It’s not secret that Shia LaBeouf hates his time spent in the trenches of the Transformers franchise. And he hasn’t been shy about it. His face alone was particularly vocal when it came time to watch the movies as part of an art installation that saw him sitting through a film festival of his own work. But now, he is opening up about all of his recent activities, and perhaps his thoughts on why Transformers is so disappointing is so eye-opening.
A lot of people don’t like Shia LaBeouf at this stage in his career. He has sabotaged himself with some pretty bad behavior. Genre fans have disliked the guy for a while. They believe he’s one of the main reasons Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull sucks so bad. In the past, LaBeouf has slammed Steven Spielberg and Transformers director Michael Bay. In giving a recent rather lengthy interview, he decided that he was done verbally railing against the two men that had done so much for his early career.
But then, he changed his mind. He has decided he needs to get some stuff off his chest about Transformers. And however you may feel about the guy, at least he’s open and honest about it. And his thoughts on those robots in disguise are pretty entertaining. About why he hates Transformers so much, he says this.
“My hang-up with those films was that they felt irrelevant. They felt dated as f*ck… You come up on these stories about Easy Rider and Raging Bull and De Niro and Scorsese and Hopper, and you find value in what they do. Meanwhile, you’re chasing energon crystals. It’s very hard to keep doing what you’re doing when you feel like it’s the antithesis of your purpose on this planet.”
Shia was in his early twenties during the Transformers era of his career. He made three movies in total, the first two with Megan Fox. Fox was fired by Michael Bay before the third movie went into production. At the time, Shia himself described his life as living in a ‘gilded cage’. He goes onto say this about his resentment towards the franchise.
“No one gives a fuck about your problems. Everybody’s like, ‘Hey, man, you’re riding the wave!'”
There is a lot to unpack in this recent Esquire interview with the actor. Perhaps nothing is more interesting than the fact that, yes, that cap you’ve seen on Kayne West’s head that looks like it used to belong to Mutt Williams was in the actual screen used hat from the movie. Before West blew up as a performer, and became the icon of hip-hop that he once was, or continues to be, depending on however you look at it, West asked if he could borrow some of Shia’s clothes as they considered a collaboration together. West ended up taking everything. LaBeouf explains.
“I’m like, ‘Go for it, my guy. Take everything you want.’ And he did. He took all my fucking clothes. Me and him haven’t really been in contact since he blew up onstage and, you know, sh*t on me. I f*cking love Kanye West. He’s going through a lot. And I don’t know where he’s at or what he’s doing. The dude has a lot of my shit.”
The actor is currently promoting his movie, the tennis drama Borg vs. McEnroe, in which Shia plays sports legend John McEnroe. He is currently trying to get his career back on track after some serious missteps. About his recent bad behavior, he goes onto say this.
“McEnroe was a master at his rage. I’m a buffoon. My public outbursts are failures. They’re not strategic. They’re a struggling motherfucker showing his ass in front of the world. I’ve got to look at my failures in the face for a while. I need to take ownership of my shit and clean up my side of the street a bit before I can go out there and work again, so I’m trying to stay creative and learn from my mistakes. I’ve been falling forward for a long time. Most of my life. The truth is, in my desperation, I lost the plot. I know this is uncomfortable for you to bring up, bro. I get it. Just get to it. To continue this narrative that I’m a piece of sh*t.”
The actor goes onto say a whole lot more about his recent failings, and what has brought him out of his hole. All of it is quite fascinating, no matter how you feel about the actor. At least now we know why he doesn’t like Optimus Prime very much. You can read the entire interview over at Esquire.