Posted on Thursday, October 17th, 2013 by Russ Fischer
The best story of the day isn’t the new Wes Anderson trailer; it’s that the mean streets of Hong Kong turned into an actual battleground for a few minutes as Michael Bay and the Transformers: Age of Extinction crew tried to shoot scenes for the film. Stories were originally sketchy, but at least one man, perhaps angered at the production’s impact on his business, went at a couple of crew members, and eventually attacked Michael Bay. With an air conditioner as a weapon.
Now Paramount has clarified the story, and the truth is even weirder and better than the original story, which involved extortion and simple intimidation, but not an air conditioner used as a weapon as in an arcade beat-em-up game from 1989. Read the statement below.
“Contrary to several erroneous news reports, Bay did not get hurt in a fight on his set. The production company did have a rather bizarre encounter with a man (allegedly under the influence of a narcotic substance) who was wielding an air conditioning unit as his weapon of choice.
“The young man, who had earlier accosted several other crew members, barreled onto the set in Quarry Bay and swung the cumbersome appliance directly at Bay’s head. The director ducked and wrested the air conditioner from his attacker, preventing what could have been a serious accident. The company’s security team quickly stepped in and subdued the assault. The police, who also scuffled with the assailant and two of his companions, ultimately arrested the three men. No one on the cast or crew was injured and the production immediately resumed filming without further incident.”
Here’s hoping that Bay sternly told the guy to “cool off” as he took the A/C unit away.
On his own forums, Bay posted:
Yes, some drugged up guys were being belligerent asses to my crew for hours in the morning of our first shoot day in Hong Kong. One guy rolled metal carts into some of my actors trying to shake us down for thousands of dollars to not play his loud music or hit us with bricks.
Every vendor where we shot got paid a fair price for our inconvenience, but he wanted four times that amount. I personally told this man and his friends to forget it we were not going to let him extort us. He didn’t like that answer. So an hour later he came by my crew as we were shooting, carrying a long air conditioner unit. He walked right up to me and tried to smack my face, but I ducked threw the air unit on the floor and pushed him away. That’s when the security jumped on him. But it took seven big guys to subdue him. It was like a Zombie in Brad Pitt’s movie World War Z—he lifted seven guys up and tried to bite them. He actually bit into one of the guards Nike shoe, insane. Thank god it was an Air Max, the bubble popped, but the toe was saved.
Then it took fifteen Hong Kong cops in riot gear to deal with these punks. In all, four guys were arrested for assaulting the officers. After that, we had a great day shooting here in Hong Kong.
Transformers: Age Of Extinction opens on June 27, 2014.