Director Michael Bay was assaulted on the Hong Kong set of Transformers: Age of Extinction, after he was approached by two brothers who tried to extort money out of him.
Paramount clarifies Michael Bay attack on the Transformers: Age of Extinction set
Two brothers with the surname Mak, 27 and 28, demanded that they be paid HK$100,000, the equivalent of $12,900 in US dollars. During their discussion in a busy area of downtown Hong Kong, the older Mak brother came at the director. He also then tackled by three police officers who tried to intervene. The younger brother was arrested on suspicion of blackmail and assault charges, while the older Mak was arrested for assault. It wasn't immediately clear why the brothers asked for the money, but there is speculation that the production is causing them to lose business, and they wanted to be compensated.
Paramount has responded to the story with a statement that claims the director was never struck by the assailant.
"Contrary to several erroneous news reports made today, Bay did not get hurt in a fight on set. The production company did have a bizarre encounter with a man (allegedly under the influence of a narcotic substance) who was wielding an air conditioning unit as a weapon. The man, who had earlier accosted several other crew members, rushed onto the set in Quarry Bay and swung the air conditioning unit 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."
The two brothers and a third man named Chan are currently in police custody.
We reported back in April that Transformers: Age of Extinction will be shot in Hong Kong and other areas of China. Another report from June revealed that the filmmaker plans on "destroying" several Chinese landmarks. Production company Beijing Pangu is financing the shoot in China. Hopefully, an air conditioning unit fight sequence will be written into the screenplay. We want to see that!
Transformers: Age of Extinction comes to theaters June 27th, 2014 and stars Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Stanley Tucci, Kelsey Grammer, Sophia Myles, Bingbing Li, T.J. Miller. The film is directed by Michael Bay.