EXCLUSIVE: BUMBLEBEE Writer Christina Hodson Is Really Excited About Finally Being Able To Unleash B-127

After serving as Optimus Prime's loyal number two for years, Bumblebee is all set to take center stage this weekend and screenwriter Christina Hodson couldn't be more excited to finally see him unleashed!

Interviews Opinion

With Travis Knight's Bumblebee finally set to open in theaters this coming weekend, I recently got an exclusive opportunity to sit down with screenwriter Christina Hodson and chat about her first big-budget blockbuster, which has been receiving rave reviews all across the board ever since its worldwide premiere two weeks ago.

After learning about Charlie Watson's (Hailee Steinfeld) interesting character development and her deeply personal ties to Hodson, we flipped the conversation over to the film's title character, B-127 (Dylan O'Brien), who fans should already be more than familiar with after five blockbuster movies.

However, with those films often choosing to keep the focus squarely on the legendary Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen), this will be the first time fans will really get to spend an extended amount of time with the yellow bug since his 2007 live-action debut - and Hodson couldn't be more excited. 


ROHAN PATEL (CBM): In the previous movies, we got to hear a whole lot about how much of a badass Bumblebee used to be on Cybertron, but we rarely got to see it. I mean, yeah, we did get to see him kick ass in big action scenes, but I’d say this was the first time we truly saw him unleashed in his element, especially during the first five minutes, and we finally got to see why he was Optimus' number two lieutenant.

Was there anything you wanted to do with Bumblebee as a character in this movie that had never been done before?

CHRISTINA: The main thing I wanted to do was really just give him a whole movie. *laughs* I love him so much as a character and we’ve seen really great little moments from him in the other movies, but he’s never had the luxury of having the canvas of a whole movie.

I just want to spend time with him. I love the first five minutes of the movie. Travis did such an amazing job of creating Cybertron and that whole scene - and I like that in the first scene with Burns, in the woods, on Earth, we do see Bumblebee being kind of much tougher than we’ve seen him. He is the war machine in many ways, on the run from soldiers.

And, then to see him become the Bumblebee that we know and love, it was a fantastically fun opportunity, as a writer, to get to see all these different sides of him. We see him initially on Earth, then broken, and then Charlie’s kind of healed him. It was almost like three different versions of one character that I got to play with in one movie.

ROHAN: Looking back at Bumblebee's arrival on Earth, that's also where we first meet John Cena's Agent Burns and he gets quite the introduction to the fan-favorite Autobot.

I think John's a very underrated comic actor and I thought this was another prime example, after Blockers, where he really got to flex some of his comedy chops. He's fantastic in the movie and his comic timing is impeccable. I absolutely loved his Decepticon joke.

CHRISTINA: He’s so funny.

ROHAN: Was his character always written as sort of a tough guy with a lighter side or is that something that developed naturally once Cena was cast? Did you ever want him to be more straight-laced? 

CHRISTINA: I would say it developed pretty naturally. He was never super straight-laced. We always generally wanted that humor in this movie and I think there’s almost two kinds of turns in this movie - there’s the very personal, character-driven emotional stuff with Charlie and Bee and then there’s some of the very big and fun action stuff with Decepticons - so humor became the bridge between those two different things.

Both areas, certainly with Dropkick & Shatter, there’s a whole bunch of humor. I think for Agent Burns to have that as well was great and Cena - you’re right, his timing is awesome. He’s so funny and he doesn’t take himself too seriously, which is awesome. I think it was really fun to see that and to have that arc for him as well.


Check back in throughout the week for even more from Christina Hodson as she tells me all about Bumblebee - including spoilers - and even spills a tiny little bit about two of her upcoming projects: Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of one Harley Quinn) and Batgirl

On the run in the year 1987, Bumblebee finds refuge in a junkyard in a small Californian beach town. Charlie (Hailee Steinfeld), on the cusp of turning 18 and trying to find her place in the world, discovers Bumblebee, battle-scarred and broken. When Charlie revives him, she quickly learns this is no ordinary, yellow VW bug.

Bumblebee features:
Director: Travis Knight
Hailee Steinfeld as Charlie Watson
John Cena as Agent Jack Burns
Jorge Lendeborg Jr. as Memo
John Ortiz as Dr. Powell
Jason Drucker as Otis Watson
Pamela Adlon as Sally Watson
Rory Markham as Jake Adams
Rachel Crow as Celia
Abby Quinn as Alice
Gracie Dzienny as Tina
Ricardo Hoyos as Trip
Kenneth Choi as Ken
Stephen Schneider as Ron
Len Cariou as Hank
Dylan O'Brien as Bumblebee
Peter Cullen as Optimus Prime
Grey Griffin as Arcee
Steve Blum as Wheeljack
Andrew Morgado as Cliffjumper
Kirk Baily as Brawn
Dennis Singletary as Ratchet
Angela Bassett as Shatter
Justin Theroux as Dropkick
David Sobolov as Blitzwing
Jon Bailey as Shockwave

Bumblebee hits theaters December 21

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