Paramount Pictures is not having a good year. They’ve put the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles remake on “indefinite” hiatus by pushing the December 2013 release date to March 2014. Michael Bay’s production company, Platinum Dunes, was developing Ninja Turtles but due to issues with the script, the production has halted for six months.
According to THR, pre-production had been underway in Vancouver but for now it has stopped due to this “indefinite” hiatus. This is the third Paramount production in the past month to be pushed back. First with the up-conversion to 3D on G.I. Joe: Retaliation, then script re-writes and re-shoots on World War Z and now script problems with Ninja Turtles.
There was some internet backlash towards this project when reports of Michael Bay urging the writers to re-title the film from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to simply Ninja Turtles surfaced. Bay also wanted to transform the Turtles origins from mutated turtles into a race of alien space turtles, which led many fans to revolt. Maybe the script changes will reincorporate the words “Teenage” and “Mutant” onto the page.
Michael Bay was set to produce the movie with Jonathan Liebesman (Wrath of the Titans) in the director’s chair and Kevin Eastman (TMNT co-creator) and Andre Nemec (Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol) as the film’s writers.
The Ninja Turtles re-boot is a co-production with Nickelodeon and Paramount and was aimed to be more family centric than edgy or dark like the original graphic novel. Philippe Dauman, the CEO of Viacom, said of the Ninja Turtles project last month,
“We’re developing more new [episodes] of our popular series and more exciting new series. And of course, we’re particularly excited about the revival of the [Teenage Mutant Ninja] Turtles franchise.”
At this point, who knows what this project is going to be like. It’s just a matter of time before the remake of Ninja Turtles comes out of its shell.