With Iron Man 3 setting opening-day records in China, it’s become imperative for every Hollywood tentpole to pay homage to the world’s second-biggest movie market. At last month’s Beijing Film Festival, Paramount and Transformers 4 went decidedly all-in with their own China strategy. Not only will Michael Bay shoot scenes in China for the next installment in his robot franchise, now starring Mark Wahlberg, but the sure-blockbuster announced that it will also include speaking roles for the four Chinese actors who survive a new TV reality show.
The competition has already begun online and organizers expect approximately 80,000 contestants will enter for the chance to play a Kung Fu fighter, sexy lady, computer geek, or precocious Lolita-type. Correctly titled the Transformers 4 Chinese Actors Talent Search Reality Show and scheduled to air on Chinese television in June, the show will feature a panel of six judges led by former AMPAS president Sid Ganis and Transformers producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura.
But what exactly is the panel going to be judging? A story in the Hollywood Reporter hinted that the enormous field of candidates would be winnowed down by online voting after “auditions and testing.” What will the criteria be? And how will the judges articulate what they want and don’t want to see from the finalists? READ FULL STORY »