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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Updates: I Hate Myself For Writing That Headline

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Trade News | September 4, 2012 | Comments ()


Teenage-Mutant-Ninja-Turtles-Raphael-1000x625.jpg

So Michael Bay is following up the tour de force avant-garde trilogy Transformers with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, another reboot of a superficially childish eighties cartoon with hidden depths of tragedy and pathos. Yeah, I can't read that back to myself with a straight face. There are only two interesting things about this film. The first is how much money it will make, which will be interesting in the same sense that after a too close encounter with a lawn mower, you stare at your jagged stump of a wrist with the detached interest of just how unfair the universe really is.

The second reason that this film is interesting is that the production has turned into an overly dramatic soap opera. Let us recap.

First, Bay decided to change the name to "Ninja Turtles" and make it gritty live action. Fans' eyes squinted. (Note, the fact that dedicated fans of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, or turtle-headers as I'm sure they call themselves, actually exist without irony is a source of joy to me in this wilderness of trade news).

Second, Bay then announced that the turtles were in fact aliens who only look like anthropomorphized overgrown turtles. This really is a critical part of his creative process. I mean, in a world where turtles can mutate and grow up to fight ninjas from a sewer lair while eating pizza and naming themselves after renaissance artists, the main barrier to suspending disbelief is that the word "turtle" in that sentence is not "alien."

Again, fans detonated. But Bay was right there to set their scuffed shells right:

"Paramount marketing changed the name. They made the title simple. The characters you all remember are exactly the same, and yes they still act like teenagers. Everything you remember, why you liked the characters, is in the movie. This script is being developed by two very smart writers, with one of the original creators of Ninja Turtles. They care VERY MUCH about making this film for the fans. Everyone on this team cares about the fans. Just give them a chance. Jonathan [Liebesman] the director, is a major fan of the whole franchise. HE'S NOT GOING TO LET YOU DOWN"

Jonathan might not let down the fans, but I think the fact that he is directing a movie called Ninja Turtles probably disappoints his mother. He changed majors from psychology for this?

Then in this June, the ultimate bad news hit: production on the film had shut down for rewrites and the release date was pushed from late 2013 to late spring 2014. Fans were essentially indifferent to this development, which perhaps should be a hint to Paramount just how much money to sink into this project.

Finally, the latest news is that the script was leaked on line. And it is so beyond terrible that at least seventeen people have died of brain aneurysms. This script is so stupid it's like the video tape from The Ring. Michael Bay has raised hell about it, insisting that this a 2009 script that predates his work. Of course, Paramount has issued takedown notices on sites that have the leaked script, so it's hitting a nerve with someone. Fans have detonated again because it seems that the script makes Casey Jones the protagonist, while the titular turtles are mere sidekicks.

And here are a couple of choice grabs from the script, in case you needed an emetic this morning:

tmnt_script1.jpg

tmnt_script2.jpg

Says Bay of this latest disaster:

The leaked script for Ninja Turtles that different sites continue to comment on was written well before I, or anyone at Platinum Dunes, was involved with the project. That script saw the shredder a long time ago. This is tired, old news -- Wait for the movie!"

So the villain of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles script scandal is none other than Shredder? Irony just shot itself in the head.

(source: CinemaBlend)



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Comments Are Welcome, Jerks Will Be Banned


  • BIKER MICE FROM MARS seconded.

  • In an Asian street market in the early 90s I was offered a Teenage Mutant Ninja Tortles t-shirt. I didn't buy it because it wasn't my size. It was a kids tshirt. I should have bought it, it was only about a dollar. I often think about that t-shirt that made me laugh so heartily back then. But those were simpler times, when life was good, and there are no time machines in today's real world...

    Someone should make a movie about that. It would be more interesting that what Bay is proposing.

  • AudioSuede

    People forget just how graphically violent and not-at-all-appropriate-for-the-kids-the-movies-hooked-in the original comics were. I mean, sure, there's a nostalgia factor to the movies that makes this a bit more hyperbolic for people of a certain generation. But it's that much more frustrating that a version like the original comics isn't being made, because that would be epic.

  • Mr_Zito

    If they're gonna be aliens, they should make a Biker Mice from Mars film instead. Hey, they SHOULD make a Biker Mice from Mars movie!

  • Battle Toads

  • ,

    If they'd just further shorten the name to "The Turtles," at least maybe they could get Flo & Eddie on board. That might have a chance to be entertaining.

  • branded_redux

    Just let Bay do it. I loved the original animated series, NES game, arcade game, movies, etc. as much as anyone, but that's because I was nine years old at the time. Yes, attempted artificial recreation of the nostalgia and cheesiness is a shameless money-grab, but so was that sweet Ninja Turtles Party Wagon that I absolutely needed to have. Might as well give it the reborquel treatment.

  • ,

    OK, the punch line was worth the rest of that dreck.

  • Snath

    Am I dead? I think I'm dead. Because obviously this is hell.

  • Bert_McGurt

    So, we now have anthropomorphic alien ninja turtles from Dimension X that act like teenagers fighting an evil ninja Army Colonel? You know, if they somehow turned this into the third X-Files movie it might have a chance. April O'Neil is, of course, Scully's half-alien baby.

  • psemophile

    I read the script, and SOMEHOW survived.
    And fans aren't angry because Casey's the protagonist. Fans are angry because Casey Jones is EXACTLY like Sam Witwicky from those godawful Transformers films.

  • meadowdancer

    And that right there is why I will never watch this movie. GAH!

  • psemophile

    In fact, there's even a bit where Casey goes "No-no-no-no-no" a la Shia LaBeef.

  • The Turtles would definitely be better served if the production followed these few easy steps:
    1. Hand the directing duties over to Lars Von Trier.
    2. Cast Shia Laboeuf, in varying bandana colours, as all the Turtles. (Naturally he'd get the role by sending Lars footage of himself scurrying around sewers eating pizza.)
    3. Shredder can be Willem Dafoe. Because his face shreds things.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    #3 is actually not a bad idea. Dafoe would play the hell out of that role.

  • Groundloop

    "There was a PIZZA PARTYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!"

    Shredder/Dafoe then reenacts every slice pull and crust toss like a conductor, set to a swelling operatic score.

    Fin.

  • AudioSuede

    If that had been the plot of Boondock Saints, it might have been a better movie.

  • Groundloop

    The Pizza Party scene would have at least given Ron Jeremy a lot more to do.

    Because he's fat you see.

  • If I were you, Groundloop, I'd be worried, because you are inside my head.

  • Groundloop

    Nah. I'm good. I actually find it pretty comfy in here! OK. Maybe not comfy, but at least I'm not alone.

    So very, very alone.

  • If you see skeletons... Like, totally don't worry about that. That was... Well it's a funny story really if you go-... oh! Gotta go! See ya!

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