'This Was My Baby That I Started.' Michael Bay Showed Up At The Bad Boys: Ride Or Die Premiere And Looked Back At Kicking Off The Popular Franchise

 Martin Lawrence and Will Smith getting ready for action in Bad Boys: Ride or Die, Michael Bay cameoing in Bad Boys for Life.
Credit: Sony Pictures

Before it officially hit the 2024 movie schedule, the highly anticipated Bad Boys: Ride or Die’s Hollywood red carpet premiere was the place to be. Stars of the excellent action movie series and key figures from the franchise gathered for a night filled with excitement and nostalgia. One standout among the crowd was the original franchise director, Michael Bay, the visionary filmmaker who helped launch the comedy phenomenon led by Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. The Transformers moviemaker’s presence was a poignant reminder of the franchise's storied past as he reflected on the journey of his "baby" that started it all.

The Armageddon helmer, renowned for his explosive and visually stunning cinematic style, directed the original Bad Boys film in 1995. This movie not only launched a successful franchise but also catapulted Will Smith, Martin Lawrence, and Bay himself into stardom, as it was his directorial debut. In a video posted on Instagram, Michael expressed his deep connection and admiration for the series despite not directing this latest installment.

In the video you can watch above, Bay shared the mix of pride and sentimentality he felt while attending the event. He said:

I’m here at the premiere. This is my baby that i started. I did not direct this one–two younger guys did it, and I love them. They took the reigns from me, so it's always bittersweet, but I see Will, Martin, and everybody.

It's fascinating to see the frequently stoic director of Ambulance share such a heartfelt message with his fans. The Rock filmmaker's role as the franchise's foundational architect is undeniable. While Smith and Lawrence are the stars, Michael's distinctive style and tone set the foundation for the entire series. His signature blend of high-octane action, humor, and heart is evident throughout the franchise.

Although Bay's absence in the director's chair might have been a concern before the third movie's release, his endorsement of El Arbi and Fallah provided a reassuring seal of approval. If you need a reminder of how great that first movie is, you're in luck—one of the best '90s films is currently streaming on Hulu.

Michael Bay’s praise for the new directors seems well-deserved, as Bad Boys 4 had a triumphant opening weekend. This success has set high expectations for the series' future, especially with some intriguing developments in the latest film. The ending leaves plenty of room for Mike and Marcus to quickly return to theaters, raising hopes for a fifth movie in the franchise.

Considering how quickly Ride or Die was greenlighted after the blockbuster success of Bad Boys for Life, it wouldn’t be surprising if a sequel were announced soon. For now, we’ll have to see how well Bad Boys: Ride or Die performs throughout its entire theatrical run. It’s interesting to speculate on what role Bay might play if another movie is greenlit.

In the meantime, you can catch up on the previous installment, Bad Boys for Life, with a Hulu subscription.