Esteemed co-creator of the original ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’, Peter Laird recently had a chance to sit down and watch the trailer for the upcoming film. While he never really over the top says he dislikes what he saw, I feel as if he had a lawyer attached to his hip with how evasive all of his answers ended up being. Don’t get me wrong, he is clearly coming off as the nicest man alive right now. Every single time he started to go negative with a comment, it always tempered with “but it could work within the context of the film.”
Peter. I love you man. I love your creations. Both comic and later animated form were some of my favorite things growing up, but you don’t have to be this nice about turtles with noses. They are turtles and you were spot on with the original designs!
While through most of the interview I’m going to pick out key points I feel that matter, the one thing I will do is give you his full on direct quote of when he was asked about his first reaction to seeing the new Ninja Turtles:
“I was impressed with what I saw of the production values — if nothing else, it looks like the new TMNT movie will have a lot of stuff going on and looking good (that toppling tower, for example) — but the changes to the basic design of the Turtles seemed to me to fall into the “fixing what is not broken” category. It’s altogether possible that, in the context of this new movie, these designs will work well and not seem so odd, but I still point to what Jim Henson’s “Creature Shop” team did with their rendering of the Turtles in rubber and paint as the best translation (in live action, anyway) of the Turtles as Kevin Eastman and I created them.
That being said, so far I have only seen this short trailer with just a few brief glimpses of the Turtles. My opinion could change. One thing that comes to mind if how cool it would be if someone did CGI versions of those same Henson designs, with all the incredible flexibility and seamless action potential available with today’s CGI.”
During the interview, Laird still plays coy when he says that the filmmakers are “fixing what is not broken” but he softens the blow by adding that since he has so far “only seen this short trailer with just a few brief glimpses of the Turtles. My opinion could change.”
So what else did he take out of the trailer? Well for one thing the added flair to the Turtles:
“It may just be a personal preference of mine — and one informed by twenty-five years with the Turtles as co-creator working on those green dudes — but the extra “stuff” added to the Turtles’ outfits just seems extraneous to me, and a bit silly in spots… [I have] no problem with the addition of goggles to Donatello, though unless the plan is to make him near-sighted as we planned to do years ago, I think it might be better if he didn’t wear them all the time.”
Of course he then added, “Maybe they will work”.
One of the big problems fans have had is the notion that April’s father will be involved with the creation of the Turtles. This one Laird agrees with them as he points out:
“I do have to say that my gut reaction to having what MIGHT be such a close connection between April and her father and the Shredder and the Turtles’s origin is that I am not crazy about it. However, I am open to being surprised by a plot which makes that odd (to me) twist make sense. I guess we’ll see if it does when the movie opens.”
People have also taken issue with Shredder when he states that heroes are created which removes and negates the accident portion of the Turtles’ creation to which Laird jumps in commenting:
“I have always found that accidental, somewhat random series of events culminating in the creation of the TMNT to be a significant part of the charm of the story. Somehow, retconning it to make their origin the result of deliberate action seems like a mistake. However, perhaps the writers have found a clever way to make this seems more palatable. We’ll have to watch the movie to find out.”
Finally one of the more controversial changes are the looks of the Turtles. Sure they look fine with a mask on but with the mask off and that nose thing poking out?
“It points up one of the big problems (for me, anyway) with the new look created for the upcoming movie — with those noses and very expressive lips, their faces look too human. Perhaps it is just my own personal preference, but the “noseless beak” look for the Turtles which Kevin and I used in all of our comics, and in pretty much all of the licensed material during the Mirage days (and which was really there from the very beginning, when Kevin drew that first “ninja turtle”) is, in my opinion, a great way to immediately show that these guys are not human — they’re mutated reptiles. Creatures. Of course, I could be wrong about the new design — maybe in the context of the movie, it will work fine.”
Peter! Buddy! We don’t blame you for what Bay is doing to your series! Even if this turns out to be one of the best Turtles adaptations of all time, no one will hold the nose comment against you! They just look weird!
What do the rest of you think of the the new Turtles trailer? Is Laird being too nice to them or are the rest of us being too harsh as, just like the co-creater, we haven’t seen the movie yet? Share your thoughts below!
The city needs heroes. Darkness has settled over New York City as Shredder and his evil Foot Clan have an iron grip on everything from the police to the politicians. The future is grim until four unlikely outcast brothers rise from the sewers and discover their destiny as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The Turtles must work with fearless reporter April and her wise-cracking cameraman Vern Fenwick to save the city and unravel Shredder’s diabolical plan.
Source: Comic Book Movie