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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Nickelodeon TMNT Fan Preview Event - Official Images

If you haven't seen them yet on Facebook, here's all of the pictures that were provided to us on a neato little USB thumb drive.

Yes, that's a third toe. No, I do not like it.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Nickelodeon TMNT Fan Preview Event - Report

I suspect that I'm going to have to break this report into a series of entries over the next few days. The short of it, as you may have picked up hints of if you follow Ninja Pizza on Facebook or Twitter, or visit some of the message boards, is that Nickelodeon earlier today (it is still just barely March 30 as I type this), hosted a TMNT Fan Preview Event to give selected fans a glimpse of what they've got in development for the CGI TMNT series scheduled to debut in the fall of 2012. To give you an idea of how big of a deal this was, and just how seriously Nickelodeon is taking the Turtles, they have never done an event like this. Ever. Not for any other series, not for any other property. Never.

I'm going to show and tell you as much as I can, but all participants were required to sign a non-disclosure agreement before arriving, so please don't bother asking me questions that I just told you I can't answer. Really, I'd love to tell you everything, but hopefully you can be content with what I can present (vague as it will be).

The event took place at Nickelodeon Studios in Burbank, CA. Upon arrival, we were all given badges with our names and had breakfast provided for us. After a brief introduction from some of the Nickelodeon executives, we got a studio tour, which included a really neat peak into a recording session for Fanboy and Chum Chum.

After that, we were shown a Power Point presentation that included a look at various character designs, as well as set designs. All of this consisted of 2D stills. At the end of the slide show, we were shown a look at a short animation of CGI Leonardo swinging his sword. After that we were shown the completed 2D animatic "pilot." In this case, "pilot" didn't mean it was the first episode - it clearly wasn't based on the context. But what it did do was present what the look and feel of the show would be through the use of still drawings, complete vocal tracks, as well as a music track.

Next, we were treated to something I wasn't expecting - a look at the new toys Playmates has in development. We saw final painted prototypes for the four basic Turtles, a near-final unpainted prototype for Shredder, and a not-final sorta painted prototype for Splinter, among other things.

I have to admit that I was secretly hoping that the next surprise would happen, so kudos to Nick for actually making it happen: We were treated to a brief table read of parts of a script featuring the four voice actors for the Turtles, as well as Splinter. Unfortunately, not all of the people we saw today are officially attached to the actual series yet, so we are not allowed to reveal them. However, as they have been previously reported as being the parts of Leonardo and Donatello respectively, the group did include Jason Biggs and Rob Paulsen. During lunch I managed to get autographs from the four Turtles. *fangirl*

After lunch we split into "breakout" sessions, where we were able to give feedback on what we liked and didn't like of what we had seen. We were also able to talk some about what we wanted to see that we hadn't seen.

Next we regathered and had some questions answered by the executive producers on the show. We were also shown a short promo video that looks like something that could air on Nickelodeon whenever they decided they wanted to. It was similar to the previously released teaser video, but showed more clips of full-CGI action. And that was pretty much a wrap on the day. After receiving some goodies and taking group pictures, we were shuttled off to the airport to go home. As I go through all my stuff I'll have more images to share, but if you haven't yet you can check out some stuff provided by Nickelodeon that I've put up on the Ninja Pizza Facebook page.

In closing I'd like to just extend extreme thanks to Nickelodeon for being such fantastic hosts. They really went out of their way to make us feel welcome and important, and they took a lot of time to talk and mingle with us in between everything that they had us seeing and doing. It was a great experience and I'm really glad that I was able to participate.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Yet More Details for Nickelodeon's TMNT

The video in the last post revealed the launch date as being 2012, now here's a little more info also found by tone-master21.

From (my bold):

... And in fourth quarter 2012, Nickelodeon will premiere a new CG-animated version of the wildly popular franchise, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles .


Based on the iconic hit franchise, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has been greenlit for 26 episodes and will be executive produced by Ciro Nieli, Joshua Sternin and Jeffrey Ventimilia. This half-hour CG-animated action-comedy series breathes new life into the wildly popular band of reptile brothers. The new series begins as the turtles emerge from their hidden lair in the sewers for the very first time, ready to confront the wondrous and hostile world of New York City and face enemies more dangerous and pizza more delicious than anything they could have imagined. Funnier and ninja-ier than ever before, the show will explore the camaraderie of four teenage brothers learning to rely on themselves and one another as they unravel the mystery of their existence and grow to become the heroes they are destined to be.

As this entire press release is about Saturday morning cartoons, it seems safe to assume that's when we can expect it to be scheduled. And there's one more detail taken from (again, my bold):

The presentation also featured the first-ever sneak peek of footage from the brand-new, CG-animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, revealed by actor Jason Biggs, who will portray the voice of Leonardo in the series.

It's been previously revealed that Rob Paulsen, the original cartoon voice of Raphael, will be playing Donatello in this series (woohoo!), so that's two out of four Turtle voices revealed. At the rate Nickelodeon is suddenly dropping TMNT info, surely it can't be too long until we find out the others.

New Logo and New Video for Nickelodeon's TMNT!

Wow! It seems a trickle of TMNT info is turning into a stream! hudemx on the Technodrome found a new Twitter user called @TMNTMaster, whose first (and so far only) tweet has revealed the logo above. And tone-master21 on the Technodrome found a video, exclusive to Entertainment Weekly. You can check that out below. Awesome!!

Next TMNT Movie Pushed Back to 2013?

John Pannozzi at The Technodrome found an article on that basically reiterates the "First Look" news from the Wall Street Journal Earlier this week. However, there is this little tidbit at the end of the short article:

A live-action feature film is also in the works and is currently being scripted by Iron Man writers Art Marcum and Matt Holloway. The movie has a projected release date of 2013.

While problems with the script have been documented for the last year or so, there has been no mention of changing the original projected release date of 2012. And while there is no specific source given for the new 2013 date in this article, it would only make good sense to push the movie back a year. At this point in time, with the script still not finalized (although signs point to this being close to finished), pumping out a movie of this scale in a year could only turn out crappy. So here's hoping that everything is in motion to give us a kick-ass movie come 2013.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Another Look at Nickelodeon's TMNT

My paland TMNT fan extraordinaireTokka got his hands on a hard copy of the Wall Street Journal that had the TMNT article found online a couple days ago. Doing the service he always does for TMNT fandom, he scanned it at a super-duper-high resolution to share with the rest of us. I cleaned it up a little in Photoshop to get the picture included here. While this version is cropped from the original picture found online, you can see a little more detail in the Turtles.

Also, this image has been verified via Twitter as belonging to the new Nickelodeon TMNT series by Alex Deligiannis, an artist working on the series. He also had the following to say about Michaelangelo's pictured weaponry:

Regarding the weapons, that’s just one of many images that was used for the composite. Don’t get your panties bunched, it's ok. Promise.

Incidentally, what kind of sense would it make to "outlaw" two wooden sticks, but replace them with a swinging blade on a chain? Come on.

Considering this little picture is the biggest piece of news to happen with the TMNT in over a year, it's hard not to over-analyze it, but we should probably wait just a little longer before we start passing judgment on what's to come.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

First Glance at Nickelodeon's TMNT?

Hey, look - an update! Sorry about the disappearing act, but fact is that TMNT news has slooooow. I have been posting occasional links to stuff over on the Ninja Pizza Facebook page, so you can join the party over there if you haven't yet. However, this will still be the central location for all TMNT news.

On to today's business, the image we see here was included in an article posted by The Wall Street Journal. It was part of an article titled "Nickelodeon Gives New Kick to Ninja Turtles." You need either a subscription to the WSJ or the ability to work some Google magic to read the whole article, so I'll copy the relevant parts of it below.

Viacom Inc.'s Nickelodeon is betting that the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles still have some fight left in them. The cable channel spent $60 million to acquire the global rights to the franchise and plans to offer a new television version of the series using computer-generated animation in 2012.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were introduced in 1984.

Ciro Nieli, an executive producer of the new Turtles series, says that the coming computer-animated version will be slightly different than past incarnations. The four turtle protagonists, who previously could only be distinguished by the color of their masks, will each have "more individual attributes," Mr. Nieli says. The show will stress their martial-arts combat abilities, he adds.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were first launched in 1984, and have spawned comics, toys, movies and other products. "The TMNT generation is now of the age where they both have children to share with and look to reconnect with their own childhood," said Joe Wos, executive director the ToonSeum, a Pittsburgh cartoon museum.

Paul Dergarabedian, president of's box-office division, says that because the 2007 movie "TMNT" grossed just $54.1 million at the domestic box office, "some of the magic" may have worn off the franchise. However, Mr. Dergarabedian said via email that "I think a re-booted version could still find favor with audiences given the long-time popularity of these characters." Nickelodeon plans to help reintroduce Turtles toys to the marketplace and Paramount has a feature-length movie in development with filmmaker Michael Bay ("Transformers").