Back to life
Mark Wahlberg steps into a lucrative franchise with Transformers:ageOf extinction.
WHILE working together on the 2013 film Pain & Gain, director Michael Bay approached his star Mark Wahlberg and asked if he’d be interested in participating in the next Transformers movie, Transformers: Age Of Extinction (TAOE). According to Wahlberg, it was an easy yes.
His curiosity was piqued after having had conversations with Bay about TAOE’s story and the characters the latter has planned to introduce in it. So much so that the Oscar-nominated actor felt confident the latest film in the franchise was the right fit for him.
It didn’t hurt that Wahlberg has formed a shorthand with his director.
TAOE begins with the world bearing the scars left by an epic battle, in which Optimus Prime and the Autobots have fallen out of mankind’s favour. Unknown to the citizens of the world, they are about to be hit by an ancient, powerful menace putting everyone’s life in peril.
Luckily, Optimus Prime comes into life once again thanks to Wahlberg’s character, Cade Yeager.
Cade is a single dad who is trying his best to raise his daughter and put her through college, which he does by selling old car parts. One of his junk purchases brings him in close contact with the Autobot and he discovers something important about these robot-aliens.
This in turn makes him and his daughter targets for government agencies and other not-so-nice forces.
In a transcript provided by the film’s distributor, United International Pictures, Wahlberg said of his character: “He is an ordinary guy thrust into an extraordinary situation where he has to then become kind of larger than life to be able to protect his daughter.”
It’s this parental instinct that Wahlberg relates to most about his character. The actor, who turned 43 early this month, has two boys and two girls with his spouse Rhea Durham and has watched all the Transformers films with them.
“I can certainly relate to a father doing everything he can to protect his daughter, because I’m also very protective with my own daughters to the furthest possible extent. Luckily I have a couple more years before I have to worry about boyfriends.”
Wahlberg theorised that Transformers movies do so well around the world because they are entertaining to watch. “And I like the emotional story in this one of a dad willing to do anything for his daughter. I think that can work well if you get it right.”
Actress Nicola Peltz (previously on TV’s Bates Motel) plays Wahlberg’s daughter, Tessa Yeager, in the film. Along for the ride with the Yeagers is Tessa’s boyfriend, played Jack Reynor.
Walhberg said of his young co-stars: “Nicola is fantastic! She is the older version of my own kids and just a pro. It’s nice to see someone that age who is just about the work. It’s demanding to work with Michael Bay because he doesn’t have the luxury of sitting and holding your hands, but she is tough and very professional.
“I remember this scene in which she was fighting these real Navy SEALs, take after take, and Michael and I looked at each other and he gave me that nod that meant he knew she had the goods.
“It will be interesting to see how this movie affects both of them after it is released, because I’m sure it will in a great way. They are both in it for the right reasons, which is good.”
While Wahlberg is no stranger to action films – he usually opts to do his own stunts whenever he can – the actor is a bit of out of sorts when it comes to working in a production with massive special effects. (His past experiences with effects are The Perfect Storm and Ted.)
“I feel confident knowing Michael Bay is running the show, because I know we are in good hands. You can find yourself feeling pretty silly having a heated conversation with a giant robot that isn’t really there, but he is going to protect you and make sure you don’t look ridiculous.” – MumtajBegum Mark Wahlberg (centre) is impressed with his young costars, nicola Peltz and Jack reynor, and can’t wait to see how their careers are going to change after
Transformers: Age Of Extinction opens in cinemas today.
Happy together: Transformers: ageOf extinction.