Michael Bay Directing Modest Little $20M Bodybuilder Crime Pic Next

michaelbay-120.jpgWhen your last three movies combined cost nearly $550 million to make, a $20 million budget suddenly sounds... reasonable. Modest, even. So give Transformers auteur Michael Bay some credit for restraint with Pain & Gain, a real-life crime pic about bodybuilders-turned-criminals that he says he'll direct next.

The film is based on the true story reported in the Miami New Times in 1999 about a gang of men affiliated with a Florida bodybuilding gym who hatched a kidnapping and extortion plot that went awry. (Read the insane three-part New Times story here, here, and here.)

Speaking with MTV, Bay has described Pain & Gain as a black comedy and invoked Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction as a touchstone; given the colorful cast of characters involved in the crimes, the ultra-violent methods they used, and the potential humor in their repeated bunglings of their operations you can see what he may mean, although the real-life victims -- some who survived, some who didn't -- might see it another way.

And another thing: This will not be shot in 3-D. Not that 3-D or robots or explosions or any other Bay signatures seem necessary for this scale, but it's still worth saying.

'Transformers' Director Michael Bay On His Next Movie, Taylor Lautner And 'Bad Boys 3' [MTV]