Latest Movie News Headlines

Director Jonathan Liebesman weighs in on this Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles business

Mar. 23, 2012by: Paul Shirey

I think we're all getting a little sick of hearing about it, but damn if "turtle-gate" isn't fun to get riled up about.  During the press junket for WRATH OF THE TITANS, director Jonathan Liebesman, who is bringing the turtle power back to the screen along with producer Michael Bay, cleared up quite a bit about the upcoming reboot of TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES.

Here's the highlights:

Addressing the "alien" aspect:

“Look, it’s so funny—if everyone was such a die-hard fan, they would know that the TCRI canisters where the ooze comes from.  That is alien ooze.  Now I’m not saying what Michael said is exactly what the movie is, because we're sitting in a room now figuring everything out.  So we don’t know, but we are like Michael said: we’re expanding it, and the expansion will be true to the mythology.  I promise you: fans will love it.”

On the mythology and original "Turtles" creator(s):

“Whatever mythology we’re building on or expanding is coming from that guy, Kevin Eastman’s head, who created the Turtles in the first place.  And so everything will tie in with the mythology; fans will be extremely excited with what we’re coming up with.  A lot of it is stuff he’s wanted to do for a long time, but just hasn’t had the opportunity because now we have the budget and things on this film to expand it in the right way.  And so, I’m happy that everyone is extremely passionate, and they will not be disappointed.  It’s all coming from the best possible place for this franchise.”

On the character of the Turtles:

“We’re definitely into the action, but for me what’s more important than that is that it’s a story about brotherhood and friendship and responsibility.  Right now, I’m with the characters because those are what attracted me to the movie.  They’re the best characters I’ll have had a chance to deal with.”

Lastly, Liebesman hinted at using motion capture for the Turtles performance, stating “All I’ll say is that I love how they did [RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES].  That was exceptional.”

Liebesman's comments kind of feel like the voice of reason to all the tantrums and outrage over the proposed "alien" concept.  Personally, I think Michael Bay puts information out a little too brashly, attempting to be bold, but instead coming off as arrogant.  However, Liebesman seems to have a good grasp on where they're going and it sounds like he's got genuine passion for the project.  It's hard to ask for more than that. 

I'm sure "turtle-gate" will continue to fan some flames, but Liebesman's comments make me feel much more at ease about the whole thing.  Childhood rape may be over at this point.  Everyone go back about your business.

Extra Tidbit: Who gives a shit about the alien aspect of the turtles, I just want to know if April O'Neil is gonna wear a tight-fitting yellow jump suit, damn it!
Source: Collider

MORE FUN FROM AROUND THE WEB

Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

+0
12:37PM on 03/27/2012

really?

all this over Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? If you didnt hear me I just said Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Its like Geriatric Metamorphising Sea Gulls. I mean the name is bad enough, the comic even worse and the fact it was written for 10 year old boys. It wont matter it will fail like every other TMNT property did after the viewer became 11 years old.
all this over Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? If you didnt hear me I just said Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Its like Geriatric Metamorphising Sea Gulls. I mean the name is bad enough, the comic even worse and the fact it was written for 10 year old boys. It wont matter it will fail like every other TMNT property did after the viewer became 11 years old.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
12:27AM on 03/26/2012

I don't care how much "original" TMNT DNA still lives on in this script

...WHY change these things?!

I'm sorry but these guys just don't have a very amazing track record. First of all, Peter Laird (co-creators of the original comic) backs these changes. HOWEVER he himself was one of the first to compromise his original vision when they crafted the original cartoon series which was HUGE departure from the comics. Second we've got Bay who, let's face it, has an eye for action AND NOTHING ELSE WHATSOEVER. He's never made a particularly outstanding piece of cinema
...WHY change these things?!

I'm sorry but these guys just don't have a very amazing track record. First of all, Peter Laird (co-creators of the original comic) backs these changes. HOWEVER he himself was one of the first to compromise his original vision when they crafted the original cartoon series which was HUGE departure from the comics. Second we've got Bay who, let's face it, has an eye for action AND NOTHING ELSE WHATSOEVER. He's never made a particularly outstanding piece of cinema and has in fact proven that what he IS good at is RUINING 80's franchises. And then we've got the guy behind Wrath of the Titans?! I dunno... there are certain directors I'd trust to make big changes (take Chris Nolan and what he did with The Joker for instance) and then there are those who really need to prove themselves by being LOYAL FIRST. THEN make creative changes to flesh out what you've got.

I'm 100% against these changes.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
10:39PM on 03/25/2012
Am I the only one that thought Liebesman was Corey Feldman at first glance?
Am I the only one that thought Liebesman was Corey Feldman at first glance?
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+1
1:50PM on 03/25/2012
Yes the ooze was created by aliens...but the turtles were not. That's like saying Ralph Hinkley became an alien once he put on the suit, or Hal Jordan was an alien when he put on the ring. We're the Fantastic Four aliens once they were bombarded by cosmic rays...don't think so.
Yes the ooze was created by aliens...but the turtles were not. That's like saying Ralph Hinkley became an alien once he put on the suit, or Hal Jordan was an alien when he put on the ring. We're the Fantastic Four aliens once they were bombarded by cosmic rays...don't think so.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
11:01PM on 03/24/2012

Get Bay off the project, and I'll start to hope

Until then, I'm really not holding any faith for this project. At all. Regardless of they are TMNT or TENT (Teenage Extraterrestrial Ninja Turtles).
Until then, I'm really not holding any faith for this project. At all. Regardless of they are TMNT or TENT (Teenage Extraterrestrial Ninja Turtles).
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
7:33PM on 03/24/2012
I promise you: fans will love it = Fans are going to hate it.
I promise you: fans will love it = Fans are going to hate it.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
1:57PM on 03/25/2012
You'll love it if you are under 12 and can get your parents to buy you all the new toys.
You'll love it if you are under 12 and can get your parents to buy you all the new toys.
7:29PM on 03/24/2012

Wonder if the sexual tension will be back....

The original comics (the real ones that E&L did that were more like a Heavy Metal series than the kid incarnation) had that weird relationship between April and Raph, then Raph hating on Leo, then Raph hating on Casey. I remember been floored when it turned into a kid cartoon (much like Ghostbusters and Police Academy). Those comics were badass though, even when Cerebus popped by for that whole journey through time gig. Even they even touch on the source material it'd be cool...got a lil faith
The original comics (the real ones that E&L did that were more like a Heavy Metal series than the kid incarnation) had that weird relationship between April and Raph, then Raph hating on Leo, then Raph hating on Casey. I remember been floored when it turned into a kid cartoon (much like Ghostbusters and Police Academy). Those comics were badass though, even when Cerebus popped by for that whole journey through time gig. Even they even touch on the source material it'd be cool...got a lil faith here....
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
4:03PM on 03/24/2012
They should get Ray Park to Mocap ALL the Turtles
They should get Ray Park to Mocap ALL the Turtles
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
8:34PM on 03/23/2012

How's about...

Four turtles and a rat are pets on a space station. They get their names from the astronauts. They eventually get mutated and return to Earth.
Four turtles and a rat are pets on a space station. They get their names from the astronauts. They eventually get mutated and return to Earth.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
7:33PM on 03/23/2012
Well he seems to have a good grasp on the material! I love how he says he wants to develop the story of brotherhood, cause that's what made the original so good. It's also awesome that he's interested in what they did in Planet of the apes! hopefully they don't mess around, and they get andy serkis for one of the turtles! Bring back Corey Feldman!
Well he seems to have a good grasp on the material! I love how he says he wants to develop the story of brotherhood, cause that's what made the original so good. It's also awesome that he's interested in what they did in Planet of the apes! hopefully they don't mess around, and they get andy serkis for one of the turtles! Bring back Corey Feldman!
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
7:52PM on 03/23/2012
Dude...Corey Feldman for the motherf*ckin WIN! He MIGHT be available...
Dude...Corey Feldman for the motherf*ckin WIN! He MIGHT be available...
8:38PM on 03/23/2012
I say Serkis for Splinter and Doug Jones for Leonardo.
I say Serkis for Splinter and Doug Jones for Leonardo.
10:39PM on 03/24/2012
no doubt! Serkis would be GREAT as Splinter! No doubt Shirey. Bring back Feldman!
no doubt! Serkis would be GREAT as Splinter! No doubt Shirey. Bring back Feldman!
7:25PM on 03/23/2012
If they were mutated by alien ooze then I don't mind.
If it turns out they are the last survivors of planet Turtlonia or something like that, then yeah, fuck this shit.
If they were mutated by alien ooze then I don't mind.
If it turns out they are the last survivors of planet Turtlonia or something like that, then yeah, fuck this shit.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
7:39PM on 03/23/2012
That's a perfect analogy. I hope they just stick to them being mutated Earth turtles.
That's a perfect analogy. I hope they just stick to them being mutated Earth turtles.
5:55PM on 03/23/2012
Like it or not Bay's technique worked, he built up a media fervor and now everyone (and not just the fans) is aware of the new TMNT movie. I hate the man and his tactics but at the end of the day were all talking turtles and I guess that's good, I just wish that could've happened without the negative publicity. After this article I'm pretty sure the ooze will be from Dimension X and the turtles won't be aliens which is canon and does work. I think the main reason for the outrage is because 21st
Like it or not Bay's technique worked, he built up a media fervor and now everyone (and not just the fans) is aware of the new TMNT movie. I hate the man and his tactics but at the end of the day were all talking turtles and I guess that's good, I just wish that could've happened without the negative publicity. After this article I'm pretty sure the ooze will be from Dimension X and the turtles won't be aliens which is canon and does work. I think the main reason for the outrage is because 21st century Hollywood has not been very good to those of us geeks/nerds/fanboys born 1976-1986. Chances are that if we loved it as kids the new version is most likely to suck (see Bays own Transformers series or anything with George Lucas' name on it). There are even things we gravitated to in our teens and 20's that did nothing but disappoint as well, the Matrix sequels, Lost and the later films of Kevin Smith all come to mind. Yet all these things still have their fans in younger people as well as people our own ages who just don't give a damn while the "true fans" are left looking like cry babies who "had their childhoods raped" and should "get a life". It's getting harder and harder to be a fan these days and I'm starting to wonder what the point of it all is.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
4:55PM on 03/23/2012

Hate Bay, but Liebesman is Rising in my book

I really dug Battle: Los Angeles. Straight ahead, coherent & relentless action scenes, no fluff or excessive melodrama, and despite the cliche-ridden script pulled off some likable characters and a decent lead performance by Aaron Eckhart.

But yeah...enough with fucking with the backstory. You don't need to 'explain' to us why we're watching a bunch of turtlemen with nunchucks eat pizza. Just let them fight and crack jokes with each other!
I really dug Battle: Los Angeles. Straight ahead, coherent & relentless action scenes, no fluff or excessive melodrama, and despite the cliche-ridden script pulled off some likable characters and a decent lead performance by Aaron Eckhart.

But yeah...enough with fucking with the backstory. You don't need to 'explain' to us why we're watching a bunch of turtlemen with nunchucks eat pizza. Just let them fight and crack jokes with each other!
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+12
4:36PM on 03/23/2012

Here's the issue

Michael Bay is shit and has never made a genuinely good film, ever.
Platinum Dunes is shit and has never made a genuinely good film either originally or based on an existing franchise.
And finally Jonathan Liebesman is also shit and has also neither made a decent film.
So really, it's not the "alien turtles" that's the major issue here. It's the alien turtles being handled by an awful group of film-makers who pretty much instantly destroy any property they've ever gotten their money
Michael Bay is shit and has never made a genuinely good film, ever.
Platinum Dunes is shit and has never made a genuinely good film either originally or based on an existing franchise.
And finally Jonathan Liebesman is also shit and has also neither made a decent film.
So really, it's not the "alien turtles" that's the major issue here. It's the alien turtles being handled by an awful group of film-makers who pretty much instantly destroy any property they've ever gotten their money grabbing, crap churning hands-on.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
7:52PM on 03/23/2012
couldn't disagree with you more. Bay has made some good films. Bad Boys, Armageddon, and The Rock. If you think those movies suck, then I don't know what to say! Battle for LA was good too.
couldn't disagree with you more. Bay has made some good films. Bad Boys, Armageddon, and The Rock. If you think those movies suck, then I don't know what to say! Battle for LA was good too.
8:08PM on 03/23/2012
[link]

[link]

[link]

[link]

The Rock has the best review out of all of those that you mentioned, and even that's not a "good" film, just a brainless popcorny one.
[link]

[link]

[link]

[link]

The Rock has the best review out of all of those that you mentioned, and even that's not a "good" film, just a brainless popcorny one.
9:00AM on 03/24/2012
I happen to believe "The Rock" is a good film. I'd be hard-pressed to say that about any other Bay movie, although "The Island" showed promise (you know, before all the insane Bay-isms started happening).
I happen to believe "The Rock" is a good film. I'd be hard-pressed to say that about any other Bay movie, although "The Island" showed promise (you know, before all the insane Bay-isms started happening).
10:44PM on 03/24/2012
that's great guy, but I don't really care what some critics in an office somewhere think about a movie. I'd rather trust the everyday people who buy tickets for the movies.
that's great guy, but I don't really care what some critics in an office somewhere think about a movie. I'd rather trust the everyday people who buy tickets for the movies.
+11
3:45PM on 03/23/2012
Bay has never lied to us before - remember he said Prime wouldnt have lips.
See that wasnt a lie? Don't worry guys, fans will love this new TMNT as much as
we all love the Transformer movies.
As long as we all pay our ticket prices and line the pockets of Bay, then it's all ok!

PS - I agree with Balboa there - we dont need this heavy back story.
Bay has never lied to us before - remember he said Prime wouldnt have lips.
See that wasnt a lie? Don't worry guys, fans will love this new TMNT as much as
we all love the Transformer movies.
As long as we all pay our ticket prices and line the pockets of Bay, then it's all ok!

PS - I agree with Balboa there - we dont need this heavy back story.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
3:32PM on 03/23/2012
It WILL be cool to see today's special effects applied to the TMNT, I'm sure, but I'm just worried about the storytelling, as Bay usually has this spazzy, coked-out pacing in his movies- as he's not directing, this gives me hope. We'll have to see Wrath to get a sense of Liebesman's storytelling ability. His comments on focusing on characterization definitely give me hope.
It WILL be cool to see today's special effects applied to the TMNT, I'm sure, but I'm just worried about the storytelling, as Bay usually has this spazzy, coked-out pacing in his movies- as he's not directing, this gives me hope. We'll have to see Wrath to get a sense of Liebesman's storytelling ability. His comments on focusing on characterization definitely give me hope.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+20
3:31PM on 03/23/2012
Regular turtles being mutated by alien ooze is totally different than the turtles being actual aliens. So which one is it?
Regular turtles being mutated by alien ooze is totally different than the turtles being actual aliens. So which one is it?
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
3:21PM on 03/23/2012
Once again Battletoads is totally friggin ignored
Once again Battletoads is totally friggin ignored
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+6
2:55PM on 03/23/2012
Why do we need that kind of back story? Once again, there is no point. Yes, most of us die-hards did get that the ooze probably had a mysterious and possibly even other worldy history, but it is something that is very mildly and subtly implied. We don't need a wealth of detail about where the ooze fucking came from. Who cares? Ultimately, I'll reserve judgment for when I see a trailer, but I am not liking what I'm reading/hearing so far AT ALL.
Why do we need that kind of back story? Once again, there is no point. Yes, most of us die-hards did get that the ooze probably had a mysterious and possibly even other worldy history, but it is something that is very mildly and subtly implied. We don't need a wealth of detail about where the ooze fucking came from. Who cares? Ultimately, I'll reserve judgment for when I see a trailer, but I am not liking what I'm reading/hearing so far AT ALL.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
3:30PM on 03/23/2012
Subtly implied?? No. Not at all. TCRI was a secret base for the alien race known as the Ucrom, the same race that Krang, from the animated series belongs to.
Subtly implied?? No. Not at all. TCRI was a secret base for the alien race known as the Ucrom, the same race that Krang, from the animated series belongs to.
+15
2:50PM on 03/23/2012

is anyone really falling for this

"we have one of the original creators working on it, so it's okay" excuse that they are using to justify this terrible idea?
"we have one of the original creators working on it, so it's okay" excuse that they are using to justify this terrible idea?
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
View All Comments

Latest Movie News Headlines


Top
Loading...
JoBlo's T-Shirt Shoppe | support our site... Wear Our Gear!