Michael Bay's CES stage fright gives more ammo to his critics

The much-maligned film director walked out of his own talk when his autocue malfunctioned during his promotion of Samsung's new bendy TVs. Shame he couldn't transform his performance

Age: 48.

Appearance: 1970s-vintage TV weatherman.

Occupation: Film director.

Anything I might have seen? Transformers, possibly?

No. Transformers 2?

Nope. Transformers 3?

No. How long can this carry on? That's it. Transformers 4 isn't released until later this year. He also directed Armageddon, Pearl Harbour and Bad Boys. To date, his films have grossed more than $3bn globally.

Any of them any good? Not according to, well, everyone. His special effects-laden blockbusters routinely attract critical derision. The New Yorker's David Denby called Bay "stunningly, almost viciously, untalented".

I guess Bay must have a pretty thick skin to carry on in the face of that sort of thing. Apparently he's quite awkward and fragile in real life.

Who says? Transformers star Megan Fox, although she also compared his on-set persona to Hitler. And then there was that episode at the Consumer Electronics Show on Monday.

What episode? Bay was speaking before an audience of industry professionals to praise Samsung's new bendy TVs, but he froze when the autocue malfunctioned. After a brief, abortive attempt at ad-libbing, Bay just walked off.

I don't believe what I'm hearing. Did you say "bendy TV"? Samsung's new curved screens must have seemed a perfect promotional fit for Bay, since they've also received terrible reviews. TechCrunch called them "totally useless".

Was the walk-out caused by stage fright, or petulance? It looked more like the former, but once again the critics weren't kind, pointing out on Twitter that even Bay couldn't stop himself walking out of a Michael Bay production.

Perhaps he's better one on one. He was quite effective last October, when a stranger stormed on to the set of Transformers 4 and swung at him with an air-conditioning unit. Bay dodged the air conditioner and then disarmed his attacker.

Now that is the sort of crazy spectacle that I'd like to watch on a bendy TV. You and me both.

Do say: "It just goes to show that stage fright is a debilitating condition that can affect even Hollywood's biggest jerks."

Don't say: "If only Hitler had been so inept at public speaking."

The GuardianTramp

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