Since Michael Bay decided to make Transformers: Age of Extinction his last directorial outing with the franchise, it’s been unclear just where the series is heading. We’d heard talk of Mark Wahlberg returning to continue the storyline that began with last summer’s film, but little else since then. Taking a cue from Disney’s Star Wars plans (along with every other major studio’s “expanded universe” attempts), Paramount has hired Akiva Goldsman to create a “writers room” and brainstorm new sequel and spinoff ideas.

According to Deadline, Paramount has hired Goldsman to work alongside producers Michael Bay, Steven Spielberg and Lorenzo di Bonaventura to wrangle some decent writers to keep Transformers afloat with fresh ideas. It’s unclear whether Goldsman will write or direct any of the films himself, but the Oscar-winning director of films like A Beautiful Mind and last year’s totally bonkers Winter’s Tale will definitely be aiding the studio in shaping the future of the franchise.

Paramount is definitely taking hints from Disney, who have expertly planned their new Star Wars franchise with sequels and spinoffs, and continue to have major success through their Marvel Cinematic Universe. I’m not sure that Transformers is the kind of franchise that needs an expanded universe, or that Bumblebee deserves his own spinoff, but Paramount needs to do something to reinvigorate the franchise if they want to keep it going.

Maybe the real tip they need to take from Disney is hiring more interesting directors — J.J. Abrams, Rian Johnson and Gareth Edwards are all exciting names to sit in the director’s seat for a major franchise film. Too bad they’re all already taken.

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