When it comes to the live-action Transformers film series, your mileage will vary, no pun intended.
The movie franchise, originally kicked off by Michael Bay in 2008, has often been presented as one plagued by rampant sexism and racism, baffling CGI choices, glaring production mishaps, and continuity errors that might make the new Star Wars trilogy blush.
2018's Bumblebee soft reboot represented a turning point where the films could finally recapture the magic of the toy franchise in a more flattering light.
Hopefully, lightning will strike twice with the upcoming release of Transformers: Rise of the Beasts. The film takes place in 1994, making it another prequel that takes place long before the events of the Michael Bay–directed catastrophes.
And just as Bumblebee retold the origins of the familiar yellow Autobot from the previous films, Rise of the Beasts seeks to do the same with Mirage (Pete Davidson), another Autobot who appeared in previous installments. Who is Mirage?
Who is Mirage in 'Transformers: Rise of the Beasts'?
Rise of the Beasts follows the Autobots — including Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen), Mirage, Bumblebee, Arcee (Liza Koshy), and many others — as they encounter the Maximals, a group of Transformers who can turn into animal-like robotic beings. Led by Optimus Primal (Ron Perlman), the Maximals warn the Autobots of a conflict between them, the Predacons, and the Terrorcons that puts Earth in danger. Together with the help of human partners like Noah Diaz (Anthony Ramos), they try to stop this ancient war from destroying the planet.
Longtime fans of the franchise may remember Mirage from the original series as an Autobot freedom fighter who harbors his own doubts about the cause and tends to run on his own agenda. In the film, he inadvertently partners up with Noah. Mirage is a seemingly outgoing Autobot who isn't afraid to be friendly with Noah. Though he was previously featured in a teaser trailer, a Super Bowl LVII TV spot shows him fully voiced as he gets Noah caught up in the world of Transformers.
True to his namesake, he has the ability to project holograms of himself that he uses to trick pursuers into following decoys. He also transforms into a Porsche 911 Carrera RS 3.8 in the movie.
Interestingly enough, this is technically not Mirage's first appearance in the film series. He made his official debut in 2011's Transformers: Dark of the Moon, though he had a considerably different appearance as a red Ferrari 458 Italia. In fact, even his name was different. He was referred to as "Dino" in the 2011 film. Reportedly, this was due to trademarking issues between Transformers toy company Hasbro and their competitor Mattel, who have owned the toy rights to Ferrari since 1998.
Mirage only has a few minutes of screen time in his original appearance, but it seems that he'll have a much larger role to play in the new film.
Transformers: Rise of the Beasts premieres in theaters on June 9.