With exciting news of the Bumble-Bee spin-off movie and the release of Transformers: The Last Knight just under a month away, the toy-based franchise was shrouded in a thin veil of controversy a few days ago. And it all had to do with scenes filmed at Blenheim Palace.
As well as attempting to blow up the English heritage site Stonehenge, it appears that director Michael Bay also felt the need to turn the ancestral home of legendary British leader Winston Churchill into a swastika-laden Nazi base for the fifth instalment of the Transformers series. And unsurprisingly, many weren't too pleased, arguing that converting an iconic building into enemy headquarters appeared disrespectful to the memory of the late war-time Prime Minister and to the domestic and military war effort of the '40s.
Now though, producer Ian Bryce has addressed the outcry in the media during an interview with Empire magazine — here's what he had to say:
"It was great. We’re not the first people to go there by any means. But our scene did inject a bit of controversy in the press the next day because of the Nazi portion of the scene. I think eventually when people see the film they’ll realize that what happened there was the good guys winning against the Nazis. I think eventually all the talk about it being offensive to Winston Churchill’s memory, one hopes that Winston might have a little chuckle about it."
'We Have So Much Respect For Veterans'
The #Transformers5 producer then commented on a quote from Churchill's grandson, Sir Nicholas Soames, who came to the defence of the engine-revving franchise's decisions regarding Blenheim. The 69-year-old British politician recently argued that it was absolutely fine and that:
"They’ve no idea what my grandfather would have thought!"
To this, Bryce said:
"Yeah, I think that’s true, and certainly we respect everybody’s individual opinion, and we have so much respect for veterans. We’re probably one of the biggest movie employer of veterans."
Then, to hammer his point home, he explained how far the #Transformers series really goes in honoring and supporting marines, soldiers and special forces:
"We use a lot of Navy SEALs and ex-Marines and rangers, soldiers or special forces within the movie. That’s always our first stop, where we go looking for those. One of SEAL Team 2 is our military advisor. We know all those guys and we’re very, very respectful and appreciative of their service. Mike and I are very supportive of our military, and we think it’s the right thing to do to inject as many jobs as we can into that area, and we do that."
So there you go, think what you want about Michael Bay and his mad decisions to shit all over world heritage sites and historical buildings, but never ever question his respect for the military. Transformers: The Last Knight hits cinemas on June 21, 2017 — here's the trailer:
Do you still think it's inappropriate to turn Blenheim Palace into a Nazi base?