TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES Take Their Pizza and 90s Slang to Nickelodeon and Paramount

     October 21, 2009


If 7-year-old me read the trades, he would be beside himself today with the news that his favorite TV show, “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” would be moving to his favorite network, “Nickelodeon”.  Present-Day me thinks that’s adorable, reflects on our current milieu of toy-based properties and their relationship to the emotional development of adults, and then returns to some recreational reading.  7-year-old me weeps for his future.

No matter your age or the age of your sad-inner-child, hit the jump for what this means in terms of rebooting the project, the upcoming film, and how a new generation can bug their weary parents for every new action figure of Raphael (or whomever their favorite ninja turtle may be).

Variety reports that at the bargain price of $60 million, Viacom, the parent company of Nickelodeon and Paramount, has acquired the rights to Mirage Group and 4Kids Entertainment’s “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”.  For those that don’t know and accidentally hit the jump, the story is about four turtles who are transformed into green, mean, fighting machines by a mysterious ooze, trained by a giant rat named Splinter, and named after famous Renaissance painters.  Reading that last sentence, I can begin to understand why my parents were hesitant about my TMNT obsession.

Already in development, this new deal puts a new “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” movie over at Paramount with Scott Mendick (“300”) producing.  The movie is slated for 2012 but Variety doesn’t mention whether or not it’s staying live-action or if they’re reconsidering animation nor does it mention if the 2012 film will be a reboot.  At this point, I’d say we’re looking at a live-action reboot with a possible tie-in to the new CG-animated TV series on Nickelodeon, also set to premiere in 2012.  Nickelodeon will also work with its long-time partner Playmates to plan an all-out assault on parents’ wallets.

7-year-old me stopped reading mid-way through the first paragraph and went back to having Raphael make a one-turtle assault on the Technodrome, but adult-me hopes that Viacom will let this property just be its charming self rather than awkwardly trying to make it cool and gritty.