The Last Ship Production Bios
Michael Bay (Director/Producer) is one of the entertainment industry’s most successful filmmakers, currently listed as the fourth highest-grossing director of all time. Characterized by his aggressive visual style and high-octane action sequences that have become his cinematic signature, the films that Bay has directed and produced, through his two production companies, have grossed over $7 billion worldwide.
Bay’s directing resume includes the films Bad Boys and Bad Boys II, both of which starred Will Smith and Martin Lawrence; The Rock, which starred Nicolas Cage and Sean Connery; Armageddon, which starred Ben Affleck and Bruce Willis; Pearl Harbor, which starred Affleck, Josh Hartnett and Kate Beckinsale; The Island, which starred Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson; Pain & Gain, based on an unbelievable true crime story, starring Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson and Anthony Mackie; and the Transformers franchise: Transformers, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and Transformers: Dark of the Moon, which starred Shia LaBeouf, Josh Duhamel, Tyrese Gibson and John Turturro.
On June 27, Paramount Pictures released the fourth film in the franchise, Transformers: Age of Extinction, starring Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, Kelsey Grammer and newcomers Nicola Peltz and Jack Reynor. The film grossed $302 million in its opening weekend, bringing the franchise total to more than $3.8 billion for its worldwide theatrical release, making it the highest grossing movie of 2014.
At present Bay is in pre-production on a film of a different genre, a passion project based on Mitchell Zuckoff's non-fiction bestseller, 13 Hours, which chronicles the last, harrowing hours of an American diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, Libya, the night of September 11, 2012. The production is slated to go before cameras mid-year 2015.
In addition to motion pictures, Bay currently has two successful television series on the air: Starz’s pirate action adventure Black Sails, starring Toby Stephens, Hannah New, Zach McGowan and Luke Arnold, which is filmed in Cape Town, South Africa; and TNT’s The Last Ship, starring Eric Dane, Rhona Mitra and Adam Baldwin, shot, in part, aboard a real U.S. Navy destroyer. Also for TNT, Bay and longtime friend and collaborator, Jerry Bruckheimer, are currently set to produce a serialized action-drama chronicling the burgeoning drug trade in south Florida in the 1970’s.
Bay is the principal partner of Platinum Dunes, which he founded in 2001 with Brad Fuller and Andrew Form. The company was originally conceived to give talented commercial and video directors a chance to break into the feature-film world. Most recently, the company released the enormously popular Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, starring Megan Fox, Will Arnett and William Fichtner for Paramount Pictures. The film, which is still in theatres around the world, has made more than $478 million. A sequel is in the works.
Last year, Platinum Dunes produced The Purge, in tandem with Blumhouse Productions, for Universal Pictures for a mere $3 million. The film grossed $34 million its opening weekend, eventually earning over $89 million. This summer’s sequel, The Purge: Anarchy, grossed $29.8 million its opening weekend and is on its way to garnering $112 million worldwide. A third installment is being prepared for production this year.
Most recently the company produced the thriller Ouija, released by Universal Pictures on October 24, 2014. The film, which has made over $79 million thus far, is currently in theatres and will continue to open in additional international markets well into 2015. A follow-up to the Ouija horror saga is currently in the works.
Next up for Platinum Dunes is Project Almanac, slated for release by Paramount Pictures on January 30, 2015. The film introduces a cast of exciting, new talent including Jonny Weston, Sofia Black-D'Elia, Sam Lerner, Allen Evangelista and Virginia Gardner as a group of friends who embark on the adventure of their lives when they stumble upon secret designs for an experimental time machine. The film is directed by Dean Israelite.
The production team will soon begin work on Inherit the Earth, a live action film based on the IDW Comic Zombies vs. Robots to be directed by Andrew Adamson for Sony Pictures.
A graduate of Wesleyan and Art Center College of Design, Bay has won virtually every major award in the commercial industry, including the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity’s Golden Lion, the Grand CLIO and the Directors Guild of America’s Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Commercials award. His “Got Milk?” campaign resides in the permanent collection of New York’s Museum of Modern Art.
A Los Angeles native, Bay now resides in Miami.
Andrew Form & Brad Fuller
Platinum Dunes was founded in 2001 by partners Michael Bay, Andrew Form, and Brad Fuller to provide first-time directors with the opportunity to helm their first film. Since that time, the company has released nine films. Eight of these films grossed their production budget opening weekend and four grossed their production budget opening night.
In 2013, Platinum Dunes produced The Purge for Universal Pictures, which grossed $34.1 million on its opening weekend with a $3 million budget. The sequel, The Purge: Anarchy, came out last year. Following that, the studio released the Platinum Dunes produced Ouija, a horror film based on the popular board game. Also last year, Paramount Pictures released the Platinum Dunes movie Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, a live-action remake of the popular comic book series. This year features the release of time-travel adventure Project Almanac.
Two years ago, Platinum Dunes decided to bring their production expertise to television. Their first project, Black Sails, debuted for STARZ on Jan. 25, 2014, and is currently in the midst of its second season.
Hank Steinberg was the creator, executive producer, and show-runner of the Emmy-winning hit TV series Without a Trace and the acclaimed series The Nine for ABC. As a screenwriter, his credits include the Emmy-nominated RFK for FX as well as the Emmy-winning HBO film 61*, for which he was nominated for an Emmy and Writers Guild Award. He recently published his first novel Out of Range for Harper Collins (for which he received a nomination for Best First Novel for the 2014 International Thriller Writers Thriller Awards). He is currently adapting the book into a screenplay for Paramount. He is also developing his first play Pro Bono at the San Francisco Playhouse for the 2015-16 season. He lives with his family in Los Angeles.
Steven Kane is a writer-producer whose credits include acclaimed drama series The Closer, Major Crimes, Alias and Without a Trace, as well as comedies American Dad and Curb Your Enthusiasm. He's been nominated for an Edgar Award for mystery writing. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, daughter, son, two dogs, cat and a gargoyle gecko.
Jack Bender studied fine art, drama and cinema at the University of Southern California before beginning to build a career in television, becoming one of the most celebrated director-producers of primetime TV. His television work has included Lost, Alias, The Sopranos, Felicity and many others.
Bender wrapped production on the final season of ABC's Lost in April 2010, where he served as director and executive producer for all six seasons. He directed more than 36 hours of the show, which have earned him a Golden Globe®, Emmy®, Peabody Award and countless other nominations.
Since the conclusion of Lost, Bender has directed and executive-produced the Syfy pilot Alphas, which debuted in summer 2011, the hit series Under the Dome, which has been renewed for a second season.
In addition to his work as a director, Bender is a prolific painter and sculptor and his artwork has been featured in five prior one-man shows, galleries and many private collections.