Megan Fox dropped from "Transformers 3"

Megan Fox, left, and Shia LaBeouf at the "Transformers 2" premiere
AP
LOS ANGELES (CBS/AP) Megan Fox, who made her name as Shia LaBeouf's sultry love interest in the first two "Transformers" movies, has been dropped from the third.

Paramount Pictures said Wednesday that Fox's option was not picked up for part three in the blockbuster series. The studio, which released the first two movies about shape-shifting machines doing battle, declined to give further details or say who would replace the 24-year-old actress.

Fox's people confirmed she wouldn't be starring in the film, and said that it was the actress' decision to leave the series.

"Megan Fox will not be starring in 'Transformers 3,'" reps for the actress told People magazine Wednesday. "It was her decision not to return. She wishes the franchise the best."

Insiders told The Hollywood Reporter that director Michael Bay and company are planning to take the story "in another direction" and will cast a new love interest for leading man Shia LaBeouf.

Fox, notorious for making attention-grabbing comments to the media, engaged in a public spat with Bay around the release of part two last summer, calling the director a "nightmare to work for." But Bay later defended her and said he looked forward to working with her on part three.

In announcing "Transformers 3" in October on his blog, www.michaelbay.com, he wrote: "P.S. Megan Fox, welcome back. I promise no alien robots will harm you in any way during the production of this motion picture."

"Transformers" from 2007 and the 2009 sequel "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen" have made more than $1.5 billion worldwide. Production is scheduled to begin this month on the third installment, with a release date set for July 1, 2011, Paramount said.

Fox also starred last year as the title character in "Jennifer's Body," playing a possessed cheerleader who preys on high school boys. The movie, written by Oscar-winning "Juno" writer Diablo Cody, made a disappointing $16.2 million domestically.

Next, Fox stars opposite Josh Brolin and John Malkovich in the supernatural Western "Jonah Hex," scheduled for release June 18.

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