Shia LaBeouf's Time On Transformers Was Dangerous From Day One

There are many ways to die on the set of a Michael Bay movie, and by the time Shia LaBeouf wrapped shooting on "Transformers," he had several near-misses to keep him awake at night. It's a perilous tale: LaBeouf stars as teenage neurotic Sam Witwicky, who finds himself betwixt warring extraterrestrial robot overlords on a mission to find a powerful metallic cube called the AllSpark, which can rebuild or destroy, depending on which faction gets a hold of it. With a $151 million budget allowing for the usage of gunships, subsonic attack aircraft, over 200 explosions, and a whole lot of car chases, there was bound to be some risk on any given day of filming.

On Day 1, LaBeouf nearly shuffled off this mortal coil not by shapeshifting bots, but by man's best friend. Speaking with the Chicago Tribune, LaBeouf recalls shooting a scene that required police guard dogs whose viciousness didn't sink in until their teeth nearly did:

"Thank God I'm really fast. [Bay's] telling me, 'Don't worry. It's safe.' Action gets called. Attack dogs run, run, run, run! First take goes great. Second take goes great."

The third take, LaBeouf explained, didn't go so well:

"[An attack dog] ran past the [trainer] with the arm brace and chased me around the set. They had to attack the dogs. They had to tackle them. The dog was 200 pounds. They would've killed me. It would have been somebody else in the part. Yeah. Welcome to 'Transformers.'"

The dance with death paid off: "Transformers" rolled out with record-breaking numbers at the box office when it opened in July 2007, paving the way for a return to the Autobot-Decepticon war just two years later, with fresh work hazards awaiting LaBeouf on the set of "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen." 

More than spikes the eye

"Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" didn't fare much better for Shia LeBeouf's safety, but it did earn him the elevated respect of his costars. "I pride myself on my professionalism," the "Honey Boy" star and writer told Entertainment Weekly. That professionalism was necessary following another close call on the set of the 2009 sequel. He told EW:

"I basically stuck a f****** sharp object through my eyelid. They stitched me up in a military hospital. The doctor looks at me and he holds his thumb and forefinger about an inch apart from one another. I said, 'What is that?' He said, 'Blindness.' This is the most insane s*** I've ever been a part of."

The impalement, which caused "dark, purplish" bleeding, gave Josh Duhamel, who plays Major William Lennox in the film, nothing but awe for his costar. He told Access Online:

"He is a really tough kid. I mean he took some s***, he took some real lumps in this movie. I was right there and it's just dripping blood ... he leaves the set and they run him off in an ambulance and it turned out he just cut the top of it. This is an example of how tough he is, he wanted to come back and work that same day and [Bay] was like, 'Get out of here, go home!'"

Tyrese Gibson, who plays Chief Master Sergeant Robert Epps, echoed the praise:

"He's my hero because he's so young and he [was] so determined to make this movie happen. And so he goes off on the military base, gets his stitches above his eye, it's all swollen and he says let's keep filming! Three hours later! [But] he came back. He was determined."