Michael Bay, best known for being the director of the bombastic and seemingly never-ending Transformers saga, is trying his hand at an indie movie centered around – you guessed it – a pandemic. But if the film’s topic is not all that surprising, its production process certainly is.
Though little is known about the project as of yet, it appears Bay is planning to start principal photography in just five weeks, while a non-fictional pandemic has paralyzed pretty much every other film production across the globe.
The picture – called Songbird – will be directed by Into the Dark filmmaker Adam Manson, who penned the script along with screenwriter Simon Boyes. Distancing himself from the camera, Bay is tied to the project as a producer, working together with Paramount exec Adam Goodman’s production company Invisible Narratives, as well as Catchlight Studios.
According to Deadline, which broke the story Tuesday afternoon, shooting is scheduled to take place in Los Angeles. California is currently in the second phase of its reopening process, which permits lower-risk businesses and public spaces to reopen while maintaining stay at home orders for citizens, but several Hollywood guilds have reportedly signed off on the project already.
Set two years into the future, Songbird will depict a world in which civilization is being terrorized by a rapidly mutating virus, and seasons have been replaced by periods of quarantine. Whether the virus depicted in the film will be referred to as the coronavirus, or shall be treated as an on-the-nose stand-in, is currently unknown, but Manson and his co-writer are currently casting actors.
Michael Bay‘s involvement in the project has been interpreted as an angry outcry against the pandemic, which indefinitely delayed releases for movies like A Quiet Place Part II, The Forever Purge and countless others. Whether getting a sizable crew of people together in the midst of a contagious outbreak is actually a good way to voice your dissatisfaction with the state of the world, however, is another question altogether.