Fox made her debut as Mikaela Banes in 2007's Transformers, serving as Sam Witwicky's (Shia LaBeouf) love interest. After Fox's Mikaela helped the Autobots and Sam defeat the Decepticons, the actress returned in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.
At the end of the sequel, Mikaela confessed her love to Sam, seemingly implying a happy ending for the pair. However, the character didn't return in Transformers: Dark of the Moon.
Why Did Megan Fox Leave the Transformers Franchise?
In May 2010, Paramount (via TV Fanatic) shared that Grey's Anatomy heartthrob Patrick Dempsey would star in Transformers: Dark of the Moon, portraying Megan Fox's boss in a role described that is "significant to the plot."
Dempsey's casting meant that Fox was still attached to star in the threequel. However, the actress' comments in a past interview with Wonderland may have been the cause of her removal.
Speaking with Wonderland in September 2009, Fox stirred up controversy by comparing Transformers director Michael Bay's attitude on set to Adolf Hitler:
Wonderland: "I'm going to start with some questions my brother has for you. The first one: what are your most favorite and least favorite things about working with Michael Bay?"
Fox: "God, I really wish I could go loose on this one. He’s like Napoleon and he wants to create this insane, infamous madman reputation. He wants to be like Hitler on his sets, and he is."
Still, the Transformers actress mentioned that she enjoys Bay's personality off-camera, noting that "he's vulnerable and fragile in real life:"
"So he’s a nightmare to work for but when you get him away from set, and he’s not in director mode, I kind of really enjoy his personality because he’s so awkward, so hopelessly awkward. He has no social skills at all. And it’s endearing to watch him. He’s vulnerable and fragile in real life and then on set he’s a tyrant. Shia and I almost die when we make a 'Transformers' movie. He has you do some really insane things that insurance would never let you do."
Following Fox's comments, three crew members who worked on Revenge of the Fallen shared an official statement to Deadline in September 2009 criticizing Fox's attitude and actions on set during the sequel's filming.
In the statement, the crew members blasted Fox by describing her as the "grump of the set" while also defending Bay by noting that the director "simply wants people to bring their 'A' game."
In May 2010, Deadline reported that Fox will not return as Mikaela Banes in Transformers 3, and it was “ultimately director Michael Bay’s decision."
After the report, Fox's PR representatives told Deadline that it was the actress' decision to not return in Transformers: Dark of the Moon:
“It was her decision not to return. She wishes the franchise the best.”
In June 2011, director Michael Bay told GQ that it wasn't his decision to fire Megan Fox. Instead, Bay claimed that it was Transformers executive producer Steven Spielberg who told him to fire the actress:
"She was in a different world, on her BlackBerry. You gotta stay focused. And you know, the Hitler thing. Steven [Spielberg] said, 'Fire her right now.'"
Bay also addressed Fox's Hilter comparisons, pointing out that he "wasn't hurt" by the remarks:
"I wasn’t hurt, because I know that’s just Megan. Megan loves to get a response. And she does it in kind of the wrong way. I’m sorry, Megan. I’m sorry I made you work twelve hours. I’m sorry that I’m making you show up on time. Movies are not always warm and fuzzy."
Fox declined to comment to GQ about Bay's response.
In December 2011, Spielberg, via SlashFilm, denied that he was the one who told Bay to fire Fox.
After Fox's departure, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley replaced her as Sam Witwicky's new love interest, Carly, in Transformers: Dark of the Moon.
Will Megan Fox Return in Future Transformers Movies?
It is unknown if Megan Fox will return as Mikaela Banes in future Transformers movies, but there's always a chance that she could come back.
While Fox hasn't commented on a potential return to the world of the Autobots and Decepticons, in June 2020, via Entertainment Tonight, she defended Bay and Spielberg, noting that she was "never assaulted or preyed upon" during her time with the franchise:
"When it comes to my direct experiences with Michael, and Steven for that matter, I was never assaulted or preyed upon in what I felt was a sexual manner."
In canon, Mikaela is still alive, and there could be room for her in future projects if the movies decide to go back to exploring more stories in the present timeline.
Given that Transformers: Rise of the Beasts takes place in the '90s, it would take a while for the movie to return to the present, considering the GI Joe crossover tease at the end. That said, this essentially dampens the chances of seeing Fox's comeback as Mikaela.
Hopefully, when the Transformers movies do go back to the future, an Easter egg tied to Megan Fox's character will be unveiled.
Transformers: Rise of the Beasts is currently playing in theaters.