Of course, Shia already said this himself. "I just don't think right now there's anywhere to take Sam," he told MTV News last year. "And it's not that I don't enjoy working with Michael. I love working with Michael. I would do any movie Michael wants to do. I just don't think there's anywhere to take it with Sam."
LaBeouf also hinted at wanting to take on less of the tentpoles his handlers and agents have wanted him to do and instead do a type of more meaningful filmmaking (like John Hillcoat's upcoming "Lawless" in which he stars among a stellar cast). "...I've been running for a team of people for a long time and I don't take any of it back. ... I've learned a great deal about a certain type of filmmaking. But I have ambitions toward another type of filmmaking that I haven't been allowed to engage in yet," he said last summer.
But in case you had some crazy hopes that this plan might change, it hasn't. "The story is going in a different direction now," Goodman told THR when asked directly if LaBouf would return. "Ehren Kruger [who wrote the past two 'Transformers' movies] is writing it for us, and we're starting to engage, but I can't say anything more."
Too bad he didn't say there's more than meets the eye. The 4th "Transformers" film is already set for a June 29, 2014 release, and by the sound of most interviews with the director and producer, it will be some kind of reboot, the extent of which might be like Paramount's "G.I. Joe: Retaliation," which is conveniently jettisoning everything that didn't work from the first film (90% of it).
Michael Bay is currently taking a break from gigantic robots and is shooting a film featuring human beings called "Pain & Gain." LaBeouf is likely shooting the "The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman" next and then could reteam with his "Lawless" director down the road for the LA-based police drama "Triple Nine."