The writer for the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie is in talks to do an updated sequel for the original ’90s film trilogy.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles writer wants a sequel to the ‘90s trilogy. Created by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, the iconic “heroes in a half-shell” first appeared in comic book form back in 1984. The turtles’ smash hit animated television series would soon follow in 1987, where their mainstream fame would inevitably lead to their first live-action theatrical movie in 1990.
Leonardo, Donatello, Michelangelo, Raphael, and their mentor/ father-figure Splinter, were brought to life in the 1990 film via Jim Henson’s Creature Shop animatronics. Extremely cutting edge for its day, viewers hadn’t seen anything of its like in a live-action film, and the sensation of which would lend to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ box-office success. This quickly made way for two live-action sequels, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Secret of the Ooze in 1991, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3, in 1993. A loosely connected GCI animated Turtles film would come out in 2007, followed by the Michael Bay-produced reboot, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, in 2014 starring Megan Fox.
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Bobby Herbeck, writer of the original 1990 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie, and producer Kim Dawson are looking to do a true sequel to the original trilogy. According to Comicbook, Herbeck has been in talks with Steve Barron, director of the first film, as well as Brian Henson, son of the late Jim Henson, on the subject. When asked directly if they’d want to make a sequel Herbeck replied.
“Yes. The answer is yes. We’re trying to make that happen. We want to do a reboot. We got our fans come to us on Instagram, they’re, ‘Why don’t you guys do a reboot of the first movie?’ We’d love to do it. The truth is, this property, it’s established now after 30 years as a part of our modern pop culture, it’s not going away. It’s only going to continue to grow. I do wish that we could go back. I mean, we’ve talked to Steve Barron about this, and Brian Henson, and if there were an opportunity, if one of the studios saw fit, I think we could go back and reboot it like it was….Imagine if Brian Henson had access to the technology he does today to make these costumes and all that. I think it would be amazing. A reboot like that I think would really get people’s juices flowing.”
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles continues to be a lucrative property. Since 2011, IDW has published a new on-going comic book series for the four turtle brothers. The 2014 Bay’s reboot, the highest-grossing film in the franchise, earned nearly $500 million in the box office and spawned its own sequel, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, in 2016. In 2018, a new animated series, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles aired for 2 seasons on Nickelodeon and Nicktoons, and the animated feature, Batman vs. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, received high critical praise in 2019.
Fans can only speculate what a Ninja Turtles reboot film might entail. Herbeck mentions possibly taking cues from the 2018 Halloween reboot, which takes up after the original film, essentially ignoring all the sequels that came between. Opting for a darker take on the Turtles, Herbeck may possibly consider looking to the recently released TMNT mini-series, The Last Ronin. A new film done in a style closer to the Turtles’ original grittier source material, married with the live-action Henson styled animatronics that first captured the imagination of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fans, may be the perfect combination to carry the franchise into the next decade.
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