Yesterday brought with it an interesting/controversial update on Paramount’s upcoming live-action Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: the Turtles won’t be mutants, so much as aliens.

And as expected, fans of the original heroes took to the Internet in their outrage, decrying the end of life as we know it. (Not quite, but you get the idea.)

In response, Michael Bay has taken to his official forum, Shoot for the Edit, and given a simple message in response: calm down.

“Fans need to take a breath, and chill. They have not read the script. Our team is working closely with one of the original creators of Ninja Turtles to help expand and give a more complex back story. Relax, we are including everything that made you become fans in the first place. We are just building a richer world.


I can definitely see both sides of the story. On the one hand, adaptations (perhaps with the exception of shot-for-shot remakes) will always deviate from the original material in some way or another, and change can of course be a good thing. As we saw yesterday, the change was described by Bay in this way:

“When you see this movie, kids are going to believe, one day, that these turtles actually do exist when we are done with this movie. These turtles are from an alien race and they are going to be tough, edgy, funny and completely lovable.”

My main problem with this specific change is this:

If the Turtles are from ‘an alien race’, that seems to imply to me that there are more of them?! And there just shouldn’t be more of them! Inevitably, if this live-action film does well, there will no doubt be a sequel. And I was talking to one of my friends about the change yesterday, and we came to the conclusion that if such a sequel does come, the ‘alien race’ aspect of the altered origins story would almost certainly tempt the filmmakers to bring in more Turtles – either fighting alongside or fighting against our original and beloved four, and that just shouldn’t happen.

So whilst I’m with Bay to an extent – mostly because I don’t think the Turtles’ origins will be that important to the film as a whole – I’m only in agreement on the basis that no more Turtles are introduced (or hopefully even referred to), in this film or any subsequent others.

For now, I’m definitely still looking forward to seeing how this turns out. I recognise that many aren’t devoted fans of his, but I think Bay knows how to make a successful film and I’m willing to have a little faith.

Jonathan Liebesman (Wrath of the Titans) has been hired to helm the film, with M:I 4’s Josh Applebaum and Andre Nemec tasked with penning the script.

Paramount have already set the release date for Christmas Day next year (in the US, at least), so I think we should all keep an open mind and await further news. Here’s to hoping it will be worth turning out to the multiplex in our masses for at the end of next year.

Source: via The Playlist.