Well, that’s unfortunate. For those of you still holding out hope for Jonathan Liebesman’s upcoming Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot, your expectations have probably just taken another hit. Much has been made of the alterations made to the traditional appearance of the title characters, most notably their pseudo-humanoid faces, which just make them look creepy. Unfortunately, this new photo of the film’s main villain, Shredder, our first good look at the iconic antagonist, isn’t going to help matters at all.
Looking at this photo from the film, which was tweeted by a TMNT fan site, it makes a great deal of sense when you consider that Michael Bay is producing this film. Not only does Shredder look like a robot, with all of those blades and random pointy things sticking off of his body, he looks like a Transformer stuck in the middle of changing from one form to the other. It was bad enough that he was changed into a white guy named Eric (played by William Fichtner), but I get the distinct feeling that this view is going to piss off even more fans. It doesn’t exactly inspire confidence.
Shredder may be big and menacing, towering as he does over the Turtles’ mentor Splinter (voiced by Tony Shalhoub), but this view looks like a rejected design for the Silver Samurai from the last Wolverine movie. He is supposed to be one of the most vicious and accomplished martial artists in the world, but you have to wonder how he’s going to pull that off weighed down by all of this heavy metal. Even just standing still, he looks awkward and uncoordinated, like he can hardly move. Granted, we’re talking about a movie where the heroes are mutated amphibians with an insatiable hunger for pizza, but even with all of that, this is over the top.
In the comics, animated series, and movies, the villain has always been portrayed rather consistently, but that’s all about to change with sizeable changes to the Turtles’ origin story. Not only is Shredder their primary enemy, in this incarnation, he is also responsible for their creation. Instead of accidentally being exposed to the mysterious ooze in the sewers of New York City, they are the result of a project to create heroes. We’re not sure exactly how this is going to work out, but it’s entirely possible that there is ooze involved in this process.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles also stars Megan Fox, Will Arnett, Whoopi Goldberg, and Johnny Knoxville, and opens everywhere on August 8.