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When Megan Fox became famous as a sex symbol, it was largely in part due to Michael Bay’s portrayal of her character in Transformers. Since then, she has struggled to shed the image, being both objectified and vilified for her later roles that leaned into it. But with her new movie Rogue, Megan Fox seems to be taking steps away from it.
When tackling her latest project Rogue, director M.J. Bassett, known for directing Silent Hill: Revelation, wasn’t interested in Megan Fox’s sexualized baggage for the lead character. But, Bassett told THR that she was confident that Megan Fox could remove it for the role. Here’s what the filmmaker said about the actress:
She’s very quiet. She’s very thoughtful. She’s deeply committed to environmental issues, which of course was the first thing I was concerned about with this movie. But she’s also aware of how she’s perceived through the work that she’s done before, and the legacy of what Michael Bay made her into with Transformers. She became this iconic young woman, who was sexualized and turned into an object of lust for men across the planet. Now I didn’t want any of that baggage because I’m not interested in it for the character. I’m not very interested in it personally, but she also knows that she could shed it. And with this character, she was able to do it because Samantha O’Hara, as a character, is not a sexual character in any way, shape or form. She’s just another badass human being who’s leading other badass human beings into this story.
In Rogue, Megan Fox plays Samantha O’Hara, the leader of a team of mercenaries who venture into Africa to save hostages. But when things go sideways, she and her team are stranded and forced to fight the local rebels and a hungry, predatory lion out for the kill.
Obviously Megan Fox hasn’t played a role like this before, i.e. someone that’s a tough-as-nails soldier, fighting both man and beast. So understandably, M.J. Bassett had her doubts at first, but eventually came around and had her expectations exceeded at the end of the day. She later said the following about the character:
What the story evolves into is this notion of a woman who has kind of buried her femininity, and more importantly, her maternal instincts, beneath all the baggage of having to operate in a very male-driven world, i.e. the military. And this movie peels away those layers so that she can actually find a greater level of toughness and commitment through being a maternal presence. It’s very much like Ellen Ripley in Aliens or Sarah Connor in the Terminator movies. So hopefully, it’s that kind of legacy.
Earlier this year, Megan Fox spoke out against “cancel culture” and people online attacking Michael Bay for the past work they did together on Bad Boys II and Transformers. She said she appreciated the support, but didn’t feel it fully represented the full truth. Still, she’s also shared in the past about how being objectified as a sex symbol led to a genuine breakdown in her life. This came shortly after her movie Jennifer’s Body bombed and changed her relationship with the public. Megan Fox said:
I didn't want to be seen, I didn't want to have to take a photo, do a magazine, walk a carpet, I didn't want to be seen in public at all because the fear, and the belief, and the absolute certainty that I was going to be mocked, or spat at, or someone was going to yell at me, or people would stone me or savage me for just being out… so I went through a very dark moment after that.
It looks like Rogue could be one of many new movies to reshape Megan Fox’s image. To see Megan Fox in this totally new and different role, you can catch it online right now, as well as order it on Blu-ray.