By Mandi Bierly
June 03, 2011 at 03:35 PM EDT
Jaimie Trueblood

As we get closer to the June 29 opening of Michael Bay’s Transformers: Dark of the Moon, it’s only natural for people to ask Shia LaBeouf how filming the third film with Victoria’s Secret model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley differed from the first two films with Megan Fox. Especially now that LaBeouf has given such an interesting answer. He tells the LA Times‘ Hero Complex:

Megan developed this Spice Girl strength, this woman-empowerment [stuff] that made her feel awkward about her involvement with Michael, who some people think is a very lascivious filmmaker, the way he films women. Mike films women in a way that appeals to a 16-year-old sexuality. It’s summer. It’s Michael’s style. And I think [Fox] never got comfortable with it. This is a girl who was taken from complete obscurity and placed in a sex-driven role in front of the whole world and told she was the sexiest woman in America. And she had a hard time accepting it. When Mike would ask her to do specific things, there was no time for fluffy talk. We’re on the run. And the one thing Mike lacks is tact. There’s no time for [LaBeouf assumes a gentle voice] ‘I would like you to just arch your back 70 degrees.’” 

Fox and Bay have yet to respond to EW’s request for comment on LaBeouf’s analysis of their working relationship, but it sounds plausible. I imagine the short-on-time version of that particular direction could sound brash to an actress who doesn’t realize Bay’s films are purely aesthetic. Whereas a model who’s used to her body being the focus of attention would go with it.

Also, can we discuss LaBeouf’s use of “Spice Girl strength”… Isn’t it amazing/sad that they are still our go-to pop culture reference for female empowerment (even if you do find yourself wondering whether the person saying it actually takes you seriously)?

Read more:

‘Transformers: Dark of the Moon’: EW Summer Movie Guide

‘Transformers: Dark of the Moon’ new details: Moon crashes, crushed skyscrapers, and flying-squirrel soldiers

‘Transformers’ 3 clues found in new Hasbro toys — EXCLUSIVE

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