Michael Bay, the action movie director who scored a hit over the weekend with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, says he will hand over the baton to other filmmakers for new Transformers movies. The latest movie in the franchise, Transformers: Age of Extinction, will likely be the highest grossing film of 2014 and is currently the 9th highest grossing picture of all time.

Transformers: Age of Extinction'Transformers: Age of Extinction' is the 9th highest grossing movie of all time

With Mark Wahlberg now leading the cast, Bay has acknowledged that "there's a lot that's unexplored" in the Transformers world, though says he will hand over to another director. In a feature in USA Today, the paper said the filmmaker  "believes he will pass the baton for future Transformer movies to a new director while he turns his focus elsewhere."

More: read our review of 'Transformers: Age of Extinction'

More: 4 reasons you should see 'Transformers: Age of Extinction'

"There's kind of a new chapter, a new direction in movies I want to make," Bay said. "I have a lot of stories to tell. And it's about flexing new muscles." 

Transformers Age of ExtinctionTransformers: Age of Extinction was a major hit for Michael Bay

Though oft-criticised for making brainless, effects heavy cinema, Bay is undoubtedly the king of the blockbuster movie and has very little to prove in that respect. He's already begun handing over directorial projects to younger talent - Jonathan Liebesman helmed Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - and maybe Bay will further explore lower-budget movies, like Pain & Gain. He recently produced the thriller Ouija and is rumored to direct Bad Boys 3, with Will Smith.

Transformers 5 is likely to go into production in 2015, with a release date probably pencilled in for late 2016. 

Watch the trailer for 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles'