TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES Concept Art Reveals Horror Movie-Style Turtles

by     Posted 129 days ago

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Personally, I had no problem with the design of the Turtles in Jonathan Liebesman’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  I enjoyed the detail and think the darker, more realistic look is what helped make them feel natural (or at least as natural as possible) in the New York City environment.  The preliminary Turtle design that just surfaced, however?  Now that’s the source of nightmares.

Conceptual illustrator Kelton Cram just revealed some of his early work for the film and it’s far grittier than what we got in the final cut.  Hit the jump to check out that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles concept art as well as some early designs for Shredder as well.

While talking to CBM (via Movies.com), Cram explained:

“The process was very thought out and took about 6 months. I was fortunate enough to work with Liebesman very early on and help design the Turtles in 2D. Once the basic silhouettes and ideas were approved, we quickly moved into 3D, where we sculpted and re-sculpted the different Turtles multiple times. Liebesman loved being able to go into ZBrush with the artists and push and pull the anatomy. Ultimately he was able to achieve exactly what he wanted through this process.”

However, before nailing the look, this is what they had:

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Perhaps it’s the color palette in this image more than anything, but this looks like it came straight out of a horror movie.  Just look at that creepy grin on Michelangelo’s face!

The earlier Shredder designs, however, actually aren’t that bad.  In fact, I might have been willing to swap the more iconic elements of the costume in exchange for one that would have allowed the character to be more mobile and feel like an actual person rather than something more akin to a Transformer.

Here’s what Cram had to say about coming up with Shredder’s look:

“Shredder had a lot of changes throughout the process. The script would have big rewrites, and we completely revisited Shredders look and function. I got to spend a lot of time making numerous versions for Shredder.”

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  • World’s Finest Comments

    This is how Michael Bay envisioned the Turtles after he was finished with all that coke…

  • MIXTER

    some truly awful designs, except that bottom Raph which is better than what we ended up with.

    that Shredder though??? 4 highly detailed, time consuming paintings of an absolutely terrible design. Did he not even research the character first?

  • GrimReaper07

    The last one is the best of the bunch and much better than what they ended up going with.

  • http://www.JustPressPlay.net Lex Walker

    Won’t see our movie because you think the finished designs are horrible, eh? Well, ha, this is how bad it could have been. Did we mention we’re bad at marketing?

  • http://www.collider.com/ DNAsplitter

    These designs look like a TMNT film directed by Rob Zombie. WTF? I liked part of the look of the turtles w the exception to the too large size, lips and nostrils. Had they been a foot shorter and leaner it would have been better fitting the whole “ninja” mythos IMO.

    • http://www.thechildhealthsite.com/clickToGive/home.faces?siteId=1 Edcedc8

      diddums

  • Bomtronathon

    I just saw the movie last night and while it was not the worst thing ever, I was constantly taken out of the movie by the look of the turtles. I was frequently asking questions about the movie universe’s rules. Why wasn’t the mutated Splinter as large or larger than the turtles when as a normal rat he was larger? How can an illiterate Splinter get good enough at ninjutsu from a picture book to hold his own against the Shredder when Shredder had spent years with a master?

    Also, I agree the last image is what they should have gone with.

    • whodey17

      if you’re looking into how a mutant walking talking rat learned ninjutsu from a picture book while being illiterate then maybe you need to reevaluate the movies you’re seeing.

      • Bomtronathon

        That’s the easy response. I like the movies I see to have a consistent set of rules for how their universes operate. The comics and TV series did a pretty good job of explaining things.

      • whodey17

        if you’re looking for a high quality film, 4 ninja turtles fighting probably isn’t it. You could, you know, just suspend your views and enjoy the 1.5 hour film.

      • Spanky

        Riiiight… ignore horrible plot details and just sit and watch the pretty colors and flashing lights

        How can you enjoy garbage?

      • whodey17

        because I don’t expect it to be good. I expect to see a movie that has a lot of action some laughs nothing overly complicated. I don’t go looking for the next The dark knight everytime i see a comic book movie. I enjoy every movie for what it is. Being angry when every movie isn’t the greatest movie ever must be a shitty way to live. I bet you’re a blast at parties.

      • Bomtronathon

        That’s the easy response. I like the movies I see to have a consistent set of rules for how their universes operate. The comics and TV series did a pretty good job of explaining things.

      • Bomtronathon

        That’s the easy response. I like the movies I see to have a consistent set of rules for how their universes operate. The comics and TV series did a pretty good job of explaining things.

    • whodey17

      if you’re looking into how a mutant walking talking rat learned ninjutsu from a picture book while being illiterate then maybe you need to reevaluate the movies you’re seeing.

    • whodey17

      if you’re looking into how a mutant walking talking rat learned ninjutsu from a picture book while being illiterate then maybe you need to reevaluate the movies you’re seeing.

    • Sithlord

      I agree with you 100%. It also took away from the Hamato Yoshi vs. Oruku Saki confrontation we always enjoy. Whether he IS Hamato Yoshi or was a pet of Hamato Yoshi, there’s always a battle agains Oruku. In this movie it was Oruku Saki vs. a rat he has no connection with at all. Emotional involvement goes out the window.

      • Bomtronathon

        Exactly. It would have made a lot more sense to me.

  • YodaRocks

    If the Turtles from the current movie weren’t already horrible enough.

  • http://www.rockydavies.com/ RockyDavies

    Its really too bad they didn’t bring Dave Rapoza in to consult on art.

    • Strong Enough

      they probably did.

    • http://www.thechildhealthsite.com/clickToGive/home.faces?siteId=1 Edcedc8

      you’d be complaining still.

  • bidi

    you guys all realize that the last one is the same Raphael from the first image, right?

    • jamesbean

      Good point. Goes to show what a difference lighting can make.

  • Merlin235

    So you’re telling me this could have been worse?

  • Merlin235

    So you’re telling me this could have been worse?

  • Merlin235

    So you’re telling me this could have been worse?

  • Nathaniel Haywood

    The last pic of Raphael is far superior to what was actually in the movie. If the turtles looked like that, I would buy that they were ninjas and not steroid-filled wrestlers. Too bad we didn’t get that.

  • Nathaniel Haywood

    The last pic of Raphael is far superior to what was actually in the movie. If the turtles looked like that, I would buy that they were ninjas and not steroid-filled wrestlers. Too bad we didn’t get that.

  • Nathaniel Haywood

    The last pic of Raphael is far superior to what was actually in the movie. If the turtles looked like that, I would buy that they were ninjas and not steroid-filled wrestlers. Too bad we didn’t get that.

  • ʝoe βloggs

    Now a movie with the look of those turtle designs would have been far better.
    I doubt that mutated turtles or a rat are going to look cute and cuddly.

  • Mezmero

    Not bad.

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