'Transformers: Rise Of The Beasts' Casts Ron Perlman As Optimus Primal, A Giant Robot Ape

At long last, a new Transformers movie will answer the eternal question: "What if Optimus Prime, but ape?" The latest entry in the clanking, cacophonous series, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts, will feature Optimus Primal, a big robot ape that the official Transformers Wiki says might be "the greatest Cybertronian hero who has ever lived." Bold claim there, Transformers Wiki. And when Optimus Primal shows up in Rise of the Beasts, he'll be featuring the voice talents of Ron Perlman, which you have to admit, is pretty good casting.

Collider has the scoop: Ron Perlman will voice Optimus Primal in Transformers: Rise of the Beasts. If, like me, you're not well-versed in Transformers lore, you might think that character name is a typo. But no, Optimus Primal is a completely different character than the famous Optimus Prime. And Perlman isn't exactly new to the role – he voiced Optimus Primal in the animated series Transformers: Power of the Primes.

Optimus Primal is the leader of the Maximals, robot animals who originated in the 1996 animated series Beast WarsBeast Wars was meant to be a reboot of the Transformers animated series, and featured robots that changed into "realistic, organically-styled animals instead of the traditional vehicles or mechanical beasts."

I'm not into Transformers, and I never really was, even as a kid. But I love me some Ron Perlman, and I'm always happy to see him working. Good for you, Ron Perlman!

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts Title Treatment

Rise of the Beasts

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts hopes to change things up for the Transformers film series. Michael Bay is no longer in the director's chair – instead, Creed II director Steven Caple Jr. is at the helm. The new film is set in the 1990s (1994, to be exact), and will introduce all sorts of new characters, both human and robot. Anthony Ramos (In the HeightsHamilton) and Dominique Fishback (Judas and the Black Messiah) will play two of the human characters.

Full plot details for Rise of the Beasts aren't available just yet, but we do know the film will take place primarily in New York City, and in addition to introducing the Maximals, it will also feature Predacons, who are like the Decepticons to the Maximals Autobots, and my IQ dropped a few points just typing that out. The film will also feature the Terrorcons, which are basically zombie Transformers. That's kind of cool, I guess! I'm trying to be positive here.

Transformers: Rise of the Beasts will crash into theaters June 24, 2022.