It looks like those rumors about a 2009 release for Transformers 2 were on the money.
According to a report posted at Variety yesterday, Paramount and DreamWorks have reserved June 26, 2009 for the sequel’s release — despite ongoing uncertainty surrounding the return of key behind-the-scenes personnel. Although Michael Bay is “expected to return to direct the sequel,” other members of the creative team may not. From the article:
The high-profile project isn’t guaranteed total immunity from the ongoing battle of wills between DreamWorks’ David Geffen and Steven Spielberg and leadership at Paramount conglom Viacom.
The studios stressed that they are targeting the June 26 date, but that it isn’t ironclad.
Even if Spielberg and Geffen exit their deal at Paramaount, as they have threatened to do, the “Transformers” property stays at the Melrose lot, as do all other DreamWorks projects.
The article goes on to note that the studios are hoping to “at least begin production” on the sequel, even if it’s interrupted by — you guessed it — next year’s expected strike.
Other projects moving up and down the release schedule are Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney‘s The Savages (December 26 to November 30) and the Keanu Reeves-led The Day the Earth Stood Still (May 9 to December 12, 2008).