Thursday, June 21, 2018

Paramount Reveals Plans For Third 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' Theatrical Movie

The heroes in a half shell are coming back to the big screen for more pizza.

Paramount has announced that it is developing a brand-new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theatrical movie and has hired Andrew Dodge, the writer behind the Jason Bateman comedy Bad Words, to pen the script, reports The Hollywood Reporter!

Michael Bay, Andrew Form and Brad Fuller will produce the feature via their Platinum Dunes banner. The company was behind the studio’s horror hit A Quiet Place.

The studio is aiming to reboot the franchise through the third Ninja Turtles project, reports Variety.

There’s no early word on casting or a release date, so we’ll just have to kick back with a pizza as development heats up.

Paramount has made two Ninja Turtles movies based on the 1980s cult comic by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird that spawned a pop cultural phenomenon in the late 1980s and early 1990s, both of which performed decently at the box office. The first movie, released in 2014, grossed $493 million worldwide while 2016’s installment, subtitled "Out of the Shadows", earned $245 million. Produced by Michael Bay with Platinum Dunes.

Both films starred Pete Ploszek as Leonardo, Alan Ritchson as Raphael, Noel Fisher as Michelangelo and Jeremy Howard as Donatello.

However, both were made before the arrival of chairman Jim Gianopulos, who has made it a priority to clean up the studio’s slate and refocus its franchises. Insiders are hoping to bring a patina of quality as they relaunch the brand.

It's heavily implied in THR's article that the new TMNT movie will serve as a reboot, now that Jim Gianopulos is serving as Paramount's chairman. Variety's report on the subject claims that the intention is to "reboot the franchise through" this movie, indicating this will end up being a hard reboot rather than a partial sequel. For that reason, it's unlikely that any of the actors from the last two TMNT films (including, Megan Fox as April O'Neil and Stephen Amell as Casey Jones) will be returning.

While the freshly-revealed reboot continues with the same production team in place, it brings Dodge’s comedic wit to the new script, as well as a recommitment from the studio to jump-start the TMNT franchise. As the writer for Bad Words, the 2013 comedy starring Jason Bateman, Dodge garnered generally favorable reviews for bringing a dark humor and whiplash sass to the Bateman-directed, low-budget flick.

It’s all in the name: Ninja Turtles chronicles the adventures of four mutated turtles, named after Renaissance artists and in their teens, who protect New York City using ninja skills acquired from a humanoid rat.

Dodge made a splash with Bad Words, a script that landed on the Hollywood Black List and was turned into a directing and starring vehicle for Bateman. Since then, the writer has worked on projects such as Space Jam 2 and O’Lucky Day, the latter which has Peter Dinklage attached to star.

New Line released three low-cost Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movies in the early 1990s. The first film was a hit with $201 million worldwide, while the second grossed $78 million domestically, and the third took in $42 million.

The news comes as Nickelodeon is about to launch a refreshed TMNT animated series Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which will follow the band of brothers as they discover new powers and encounter a mystical world they never knew existed beneath the streets of New York City, in September 2018.

Dodge is repped by CAA, Grandview and Gang Tyre.

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Originally published: Thursday, June 21, 2018 at 12:57am BST.

Additional sources: SyFy Wire, IGN UK, Screen Rant.
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