You may have heard by now that our favorite scruffy weasel Shia LaBeouf gave an interview to Details Magazine where he essentially bragged about banging Megan Fox on set while working with her on the first two Transformers movies.
If you missed it, here's the key information:
Asked if he hooked up with Fox, LaBeouf nods affirmatively. "Look, you're on the set for six months, with someone who's rooting to be attracted to you, and you're rooting to be attracted to them," he explains. "I never understood the separation of work and life in that situation. But the time I spent with Megan was our own thing, and I think you can see the chemistry onscreen."
When I inquire about Fox's status at the time with her longtime boyfriend, Brian Austin Green, LaBeouf replies, "I don't know, man. I don't know. I don't know. I don't know. . . ."—repeating the phrase exactly 12 times with various intonations, as if trying to get it just right. Finally, he says, "It was what it was."
Now, if you know me, you know that I am not a fan of Shia LaBeouf. Basically, I am of the mind that he has been parading around Hollywood for the last few years in his Big Boy pants trying to prove to anyone and everyone what a badass he is. Bragging that you nailed Megan Fox in a trailer somewhere on Paramount back lot basically lines up with this.
If that doesn't jive with your interpretation of Shia LaBeouf, then sample this quote from the same article:
...there's an upside to posing for the occasional mug shot. "I've noticed that since this 'wild child' s--- has been posted on my head," he says, "people seem a little more respectful."
Mmm-hmm. We're all fawning over how dangerous you are, you little imp!
Here's the thing: I never really bought LaBeouf's tough guy act and I'm certainly not buying it now. But I think I'm starting to understand it a little bit more. Especially his pathological need to "tell it like it is" in interviews.
Think about this guy's career in the last 5 years. Between Transformers, Indiana Jones and Wall Street, he's basically acting in movies where he's the least interesting thing in them. He's a cipher. No one wants to talk to him about his performance. People want to ask him what it's like working with Harrison Ford, Oliver Stone, Michael Douglas or Michael Bay.
So what do you do? You start talkin' smack. Why? Because it gets you headlines. People start talking about you again. You can the crazy nonsense you're spouting. Watch cable news. Politicans pull this move ALL THE TIME.
Some people like to give LaBeouf credit for being honest. I like to call these people "self-hating movie fans." They're basically mad that they got duped into putting down good money for a lousy movie and cheer up only when someone behind the scenes pulls the curtain back to agree with them about how awful it was. It makes them feel validated. Meanwhile, the guy doing the "truth telling" gets to look like a hero.
But here's the thing: It doesn't take a lot of intestinal fortitude to say Transformers 2 sucked or Indiana Jones 4 sucked or Wall Street 2 sucked TWO YEARS AFTER THE FACT. You know, after your promotional obligations are over, after the critical and fan response has been factored in or after your paycheck has cleared.
My question is, "Would LaBeouf still be doing all this 'truth-telling' if fan reaction to those movies had been positive?" My guess is "probably not."
Someone with integrity might look at the final cut of a bad movie they starred in and say "You know, this isn't very good. I'm not comfortable promoting it." Someone with discerning taste might look at a script and say "This is not for me. I should be doing movies with more substance."
LaBeouf is not that guy. In the Details article he talks about how he passed on recent Oscar winners like The Social Network and 127 Hours.
He does talk about how he's trying to be more choosy and is looking for roles that are "Warren Beatty—type game changers." He also says he's done with action movies. Apparently it creates "animosity from men."
"They feel like they want to challenge me," Labeouf shares. "'I just f---ed up Shia LaBeouf!' It's a story you can tell, and I guess you're cool for it."
Which I guess kind of explains the Megan Fox bragging. Like that's suddenly going to make him look cool to men he feels animosity from. Meanwhile, he's shooting himself in the foot by alienating the only fanbase I've ever seen stick up for him - young women. I can't imagine bragging about the women you've slept with will endear you to... y'know... women.
Shia LaBeouf is basically the Mark Hamill of Generation Y. A smarmy kid who stumbled upward into a giant franchise and got into a car accident at the apex of his appeal. Except, unlike Hamill, LaBeouf wreck just mashed up his hand and not his face. So that bought him a few more years.
He's still got a heaping spoonful of humility coming his way. I'm looking forward to the next 20 years of his obscurity.
I take it with a grain of salt.
Shia LaBeouf strikes me as a nerd that will say anything to make him popular with the "cool kids."
What gives you that impression?
Let's just say I have a lot of first-hand experience.
Sorry I'm late.
Chuck Norris and I had to stop a bus full of nuns from slamming into a kitten factory.