The heroes in a half shell are back and bigger than they have ever been before. Paramount Pictures has debuted the first trailer for the Michael Bay produced adaptation of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The live action adaptation of the cult comic book series was directed by Jonathan Liebesman and features Megan Fox as the Ninja Turtles closest compadre, April O’Neil.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (or TMNT as it is also known) follows the fearless and stubborn news reporter April O’Neil and her smart-mouthed cameraman Vern Fenwick, played by Will Arnett, in a dark and crime-filled New York City. The city is controlled by the evil Shredder and his squad of deadly ninjas known as the Foot Clan. As the Shredder’s grip around the city tightens, April O’Neil runs into the one possible salvation from his corruption, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The four outcast brothers from the sewers rise up to battle the Shredder and his dangerous Foot Clan to restore peace and order to the city of New York. Also starring in the film are William Fichtner as the diabolical Shredder, Danny Woodburn as the Ninja Turtles’ teacher, the talking rat known as Master Splinter, and Whoopi Goldberg as a character known as Bernadette Thompson.
In the debut trailer for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, quick glimpses are shown of the turtles in high flying action. To achieve the lifelike look of the turtles, director Jonathan Liebesman casted a group of relatively unknown actors and placed them in motion capture suits for digital animators to have something to build the characters from. Pete Ploszek leads the crew as Leonardo, Alan Ritchson was cast as the tough and brooding Raphael, Jeremy Howard plays the intellectual Donatello while Noel Fisher, best known for his appearances on Showtime’s Shameless as Mickey Milkovich, plays the party-loving Michelangelo.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will be the fifth big screen adaptation of the popular characters. In 1990, the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film was released to incredible success. The film cost roughy $13.5 million to produce and grossed over $200 million worldwide to become one of the most successful independent films of all time. The film saw two live action sequels, the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Secret Of The Ooze, released in 1991, was not quite as successful and featured a far more light-hearted tone when compared to the original film. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Secret Of The Ooze also suffered from poor critics reviews and fan backlash due to the fact the turtles used their weapons far less than they did in the previous film. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III was released in 1993 to a weaker box office reception. The franchise sat quietly on the shelf for several years until an animated reboot was attempted in 2007. Technically set after the events of the original three films, TMNT was completely computer animated and featured the voices of Chris Evans and Patrick Stewart. The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles of the recent relaunch are a combination of motion capture and CGI unlike the previous live action installments mix of puppets and costumes.
The debut trailer for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has quieted some of the negative buzz that was previously surrounding the film. There was a rumored script leak last year that suggested the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles origins had been changed to being aliens from outer space which caused many fans to boycott Michael Bay’s involvement with the series and demanding his replacement.
Watch the debut trailer for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles below.
By Benjamin Murray