Michael Bay Says the Turtles in New TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES Movie Will Be Aliens, Not Mutants

     March 19, 2012

My beloved franchise when I was a kid was the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  I was a little too late for Thundercats and too early for Power Rangers, and for this I am grateful.  In retrospect, TMNT is just as goofy, but the turtles still have a place in my heart.  Keeping this in mind, I’m trying not to get too upset over producer Michael Bay‘s recent revelation that the turtles in the upcoming live-action movie will be aliens, not mutants.  Hit the jump for what Bay had to say about the change along with my thoughts about it.

[Note that this project is separate from the new animated TV series that's airing on Nickelodeon in the fall.  The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie is due out on December 25, 2013.]

Here’s what Bay said at the Nickelodeon* upfronts [via StuffWeLike]:

Michael Bay talks Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles by stuffwelike 

For those who don’t want to watch the video, here’s the quote:

“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.”

I can understand tweaking out some of the old elements.  I can live with ditching the ooze that made the pet shop turtles into full-sized warriors.  But the word “mutant” is in the name.  The title is basically a checklist.  The characters must be teenaged, mutated turtles that are skilled in martial arts.  Otherwise you could change all of the elements, and may as well make them Geriatric Alien Karate Lizards.

I’m not really outraged about all of this.  I’m simply confused by the change.  Why do kids need to believe the turtles “actually do exist”, and how does make them aliens accomplish that?

*For those who may be confused, Nickelodeon isn’t just a TV network anymore; it’s also Paramount’s family films division.

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  • Drew

    Kids don’t believe in turtles? they’re more prone to believing in aliens? lame.

  • Michael

    Bay better be joking or just trying to stir up attention…because he should stick with the Turtles’ origin story, hence the name Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Not Aliens!

  • drewerd

    this has too be a joke it is the name teenage “mutant” ninja turtles not teenage alien ninja turtles that is like making clark kent a human not kryptonian and he is not super just a reporter

  • mattedscreen

    Bay is just looking to prove over and over again how he can not tell a story and is a complete jack ass, I used to dig the guy’s movies but the last 2 transformers, his “producing” of the Amityville, Friday the 13th, Texas Chainsaw, and Nightmare on Elm Street remakes, have all proved he has his head up his butt and couldn’t find his way out with a flashlight

    TANT is not the same as TMNT – nuff said

  • Elijah

    Last I heard the movie wasn’t even going to be called TMNT. They were thinking of dropping the Teenage Mutant part. Just Ninja Turtles as to not be tied to the original movies timeline wise since it would be a reboot.

  • mr. J

    yeah, aliens are more plausible this days than mutants, it’s not like anybody knows the x- men anyway.

  • Walt Ribeiro

    I loved this franchise as a kid. In fact, I actually arranged the theme song for orchestra. I hope Michael Bay has a cool twist on it, change is tough, but I’m interested.

  • frtew
  • Strtrcr

    Worst news I’ve heard all year!!

  • angryfan

    This makes me want to kick Michael Bay in the TANT and by TANT I mean Taint.

  • Nate H

    Wow, this is horrendous. This makes no sense. Making them aliens takes away HALF of their defining characteristics. So now they’re Teenage Alien Ninja Aliens? He’s setting himself up to fail…again.

    • Sccitylhh

      That’s the disturbing thing about Michael Bay, financially he never fails.

  • Phil123

    I was worried initally when I heard Bay was gonna get involved in the turtles, and it seems i was right!!

  • David Savage

    Michael Bay… I don’t matter how you say how much kids are going to love “your” version of the Alien Turtles (hahahahahahaha what?). You have OFFICIALLY ruined the mythologies of the franchise and the masses of older fans. You are a disgrace.

  • Michael

    Just No…

  • Mrtigerthunder

    OMG Michael Bay stop destroying things we grew up watching. TMNT are turtles. NOT stupid aliens. Is Splinter going to be an alien too? ugh… noo please. No

  • zombieman

    Apparently Bay was not allowed to play with any cool toys as a child. He was made fun of by the kids that did own Battleship, Transformers and TMNT figures. Now that he is a rich douche he is getting his revenge by crapping all over the things he didn’t get to play with. His next movie is based off of “Ants in my pants”and will be about termites from another dimension that want our kilts and blouses.

  • Rossome

    what a surprise, michael bay ruins something

    • zombieman

      I remember when it was just limited to just Will Smith’s career.

  • ScaredForMovies

    Unfortunately it seems Michael Bay is a serial rapist of children’s franchises. This is appalling. After messing up the mythology of Transformers and saying it was a stupid idea he’s going to throw out a huge chunk of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles mythology. Because Aliens are so original and cutting edge these days. Man this guy is the supreme douchebag of our generation. Just go hang out at the playboy mansion and leave us alone forever.


    It’s kinda like the new ‘Karate Kid’ movie, where he learned Kung-Fu, and had nothing to do with Karate in any way.

  • Sangro

    wait that doesnt make any sense…. if he wants to reboot a series and use aliens as a main theme why not reboot biker mice from mars….. leave tmnt alone.

  • Richard

    I thought for a mil-second, is this April’s Fools. Went back to reality & Michael Bay’s involvement is the reason of this tragedy.

  • sense 11

    OH NO.

    I hate Michael Bay

    • sense 11

      seriously this has to be a joke,

      Toxic waste causing some crazy mutism is a lot more plausible than fucking aliens. I guess he wasn’t happy making the new transformers look like mangled pieces of metal crap and changing the cars to make sure they where all American models like anybody cares about that. Now he is going to take the pollution storyline out of the Turtles universe. No amount of great CGI will make up for that loss to the storyline.

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  • Yahzee

    The movie is out already? Wow I didn’t knew. This is just an article looking for hits and make controversy. First I need to see a trailer, or at least an official synopsis to really believe this (if it is true it’s truly disturbing for any turtles fan)

    By the way, what was wrong with TMNT? That’s was a damn fine movie…

  • AlexHeyNa

    When I become president of the world, you can be sure Michael Bay will no longer be allowed to have a job even remotely related to the entertainment industry. And all the money he’s ever made will go to the “Traumatized 80s-and-90s Kids Foundation”.

    This is disgraceful.

  • Elena

    Wow that is the DUMBEST thing I’ve ever heard.

  • Tim

    Born in 1984; grew up with the turtles. This idea is a huge mistake. Thanks Michael Bay…

  • Brandon Avery

    This is absolutely ridiculous!!!

  • WEV

    Aliens?….sigh…..Teenage Alien Ninja Turtles?……ALIENS???

    does not compute…….

    Rant incoming………….

    Michael Bay……what a stupid, stupid, stupid man! What a complete an utter cretin! A moronic and disturbed brain. A complete waste of space, its a crime that air is being wasted on that man! What an arrogant, self indulgent, obnoxious fool!

    What was Bay thinking…”look what iv discovered that no one else knows about, another beloved franchise i don’t know f-all about that i can exploit and use to make more money for my ego and anger more people in the process, and once that mission is done i will move on to Thundercats, aren’t i great!”

    Cant the joker come up with an original film to shit on and let people who know the mythology of the franchise and who know how to make a good film come up with the story and make the film? One can only hope that whoever is directing this abomination decides that changing the Turtles into aliens is a dumb idea that makes absolutely no sense and its just the rambles of a mad person and decides to keep them mutants. But then again Bay being the man he is im sure he doesn’t hire anyone but “yes” people, no one who will challenge him creatively and put him on the spot for being the clueless wrecking ball operator that he really is.

    Just piss off and go back to directing tv commercials or clean toilets, he should really be dumped on the moon, the dark side of it with his crap robots along with all his other shitty brainless ideas.

    Michael Bay…the destroyer of worlds and dreams!

    • Jay McKells

      You should make your rants a bit snappier if you want them to compute…

      • WEV

        ha what, like your really snappy reply…think not, jog on ;)

      • Jay McKells

        Jog on?! lol wind your neck in chubby..

      • WEV

        lol you still here?

      • WEV

        are you Michael Bay, using a different name? I suppose that is an insult within itself, sorry i may have gone too far there?……naaa

  • Sugreev2001

    WTF !!! Ruining Jason Voorhees and Freddy Kruegar wasn’t enough,now you go ahead and rape another memory of my childhood.

  • Michael Angelo


    Ok, now that i’ve regained conciousness from hearing this idea, I am trying to make sense of it. Bad idea yes…


    I think i c see where theyre going with it. Maybe this is a better story than Ooze infecting turtles and a rat who learned kung fu.

    Instead, this “Race of beings” from another world “DIMENSION” could mean we finally will get a few other Aliens….. KRAANG!!! And Bebob and Rocksteady, and Foot soldiers that are aliens/robots like the cartoons.

    I’m assuming the Turtles, being of one race, will come from a Dimension, alternate reality and may end up persued by Kraang and the Technodrome. And other Manimals will therefore exist, rather than using Ooze. (Or, maybe the earth Animals were experimented on by Kraang, turned into Humanoids etc..

    Doesnt sound so bad when I think of it like that.

    • Kraang

      And the term “Mutant” given to them by earthlings. Makes sense.

    • WEV

      hmm, when put like that, it doesn’t sound as bad. But this is Michael Bay, he doesn’t have the brain and imagination that you or most the people on here posses.

  • Michael Angelo

    WTF is wrong with this site? Posted messages dont appear half the time!

  • David

    Companies dumping toxic waste to mutate living like it way more believable than aliens. Whats the aliens going to do break down and have gas fall on the turtles. Or out of all the species on the planet an alien would decide to abduct a turtle? What the crap Bay! I think Bay has had to make anal probes.

  • Mr_Skyfish

    Hay Michael Bay got a great idea for you!


  • dubl

    I wish michael bay would just go away…..please! Go away!!!!!!! Wtf sense does that make!!!! teenage….MUTANT….ninja turtles…..

  • J

    Man what the fuck…..that makes no sense at all…Why can’t you stick to the original..secret of the ooze, made these regular turtles into these Ninjas. Those movies were my favorite things as a kid, this guy is going kill it completely. Hell he will probably leave Splinter out of it…This is just stupid. Teenage MUTANT Ninja Turtles….read the title Bay.

  • nina

    why must this rainman of a turd crap on every beloved pop cultural memory from my childhood???

  • gabriela

    if it aint broke dont fix it….

    TMNT is what i grew up watching, and my daughter loves all of the tmnt movies i SAVED for her when i was growing up! i dont think itll make a differene to the kids if the turtles are mutants or if they are aliens… but to us parents/older generations; it does!

  • jerrod

    phone: 310-859-4000 call this number to dispute his direction

  • j-clem

    So… TANT?

  • Old Soldier

    Is Ron Moore and David Eick involved in this? It seems so.

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  • Stik

    Mr. Bay…stop dumping on and ruining all these great creations from my childhood! You Fu#&ed up Transformers soooo bad, you raped Freddy….please don’t do it to the Turtles too.

    Do everyone a favor and please for the love of god retire already! Stop screwing up things that I and alot of others loved from their childhood. STOOOOOOOP! It’s MUTANT Turtles. GAAAAAWWWD!!!!

  • anthony

    Not to mention that most of their rogue gallery were also mutants. This is sounding like transformers. Aliens using our home as a battleground. But….Anyone remember those Transformer Turtles they came out with back in the day. He must have his eye on merchandising.

  • TMNT

    Someone needs to start a campaign NOW to make sure this doesnt happen and that they stay true to the actual story. Might as well do his next Friday the 14th movie with jason in a pink dress serving people tea at a fancy hotel its about the same story change. Hope his writers and people around him tell him how bad this is.

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  • Thomas

    This is some bull this is part of my child hood to change something like that for the turtles is stupid…Michael Bay u SUX!!!!

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