Michael Bay Comments on Leaked ‘Ninja Turtles’ Movie Script

Published 3 years ago by , Updated May 3rd, 2014 at 7:40 am,

As one of Hollywood’s biggest blockbuster directors, Michael Bay doesn’t make a habit of defending himself or his filmmaking approach; frankly, he no longer ha$ to. However, the situation with the live-action movie reboot of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Bay is set to produce only seems to be getting worse and worse in the eyes of fans.

After an early script for the film – now simply titled Ninja Turtles – was allegedly leaked online, it didn’t take long to see that the writing bar had been set lower than fans were ready to accept. Now Michael Bay has commented on the script in question, claiming that it was produced long before he or anyone at his company was attached to the project. But that likely won’t be enough to sway skeptics.

It would be hard to find anyone to vocally support the supposed script for Ninja Turtles, since its crimes against artistic license have been well-documented already. No longer mutants at war with the shadowy Foot Clan ninjas, Leo, Don, Raph and Mikey are presented in the new film as extraterrestrial beings facing off against a covert military force (can you tell Michael Bay’s involved yet?), all while cracking pop-culture jokes and zany references. The script was so objectionable that Turtles co-creator Peter Laird deemed no aspect worth saving, recommending that it would be best for all concerned if it was trashed entirely.

Michael Bay has apparently decided that enough is enough, and is attempting to distance himself and his production company from the script. The comment from Bay was spotted by Latino Review, and might raise a few eyebrows among those who have been following the TMNT reboot for some time:

“The leaked script for Ninja Turtles that different sites continue to comment on was written well before I, or anyone at Platinum Dunes, was involved with the project.

That script saw the shredder a long time ago.

This is tired, old news — Wait for the movie!”

While it’s true that the script was not produced in the last few months, and is in all likelihood not the one that director Jonathan Liebesman will be following, the case is not that simple. For starters, the script – if legitimate – was dated as having been completed in January of this year, roughly a month before Michael Bay and Platinum Dunes were attached. It’s fair for Bay to claim that the script didn’t ever stand a chance of being accepted if it was lacking in quality, but there aren’t many signs that producing a story that fans would approve of is the top priority.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Eastman Laird Michael Bay Comments on Leaked Ninja Turtles Movie Script

One co-creator of the Ninja Turtles may have publicly denounced the absurdity of the leaked script (we believe the term “fundamentally flawed” was used), but the other seems completely on board. Optimism on Kevin Eastman’s part isn’t a crime in itself, but his perspective on the potential of the reboot may not be as clear as some would like. When explaining the film’s delay until May 2014, Eastman explained that the latest script being developed wasn’t just strong, but “as good as the last version — they’ve really knocked it out of the park.” If there is any chance that the “last version” referred to is the one that Bay claims saw the shredder (no pun) a long time (read: months) ago, then those words may not instill much confidence.

As for Bay’s hope that fans will wait until the film is finished to pass judgement, that is a sentiment that even we can understand. Sure, there may not be many fan-favorite creative minds shaping the story – not to mention rewriting the characters’ origins – but that doesn’t mean the movie has to be terrible. Dropping the title to simply Ninja Turtles may serve the the purpose of slicker marketing, but it could also be the first hint that the movie could speak to the previous trilogy’s now-adult audience.

Where the action and fight choreography of the reboot is concerned, there really is no better place to turn for inspiration than The Raid: Redemption. That’s the style that’s influencing the reboot, according to Eastman, and anyone who doubts it’s a wise move need only read our review of The Raid. Should Ninja Turtles even come close to the tension and pace set by The Raid, fans might just see Raph and the gang in a whole new light. Pairing serious martial arts choreography with a slightly grander setting, and some beloved villains and thugs thrown in for good measure could be a winning combination, provided it’s handled with enough care. ‘Could’ being the operative word.

We can only hope that the Internet unrest will act as a reminder to Bay and Liebesman that the Ninja Turtles may be a dormant film property, but there are still plenty of fans invested in its direction.

To what extent the film will be ‘shredded’ by fans remains to be seen, when Ninja Turtles opens in U.S. theaters on May 16th, 2014.

Source: Latino Review

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  1. Bay is everything Nolan wishes he could be, when doing action scenes. Don’t get bum hurt now fanboys.

    Bay still sucks though, so don’t get things twisted, kids.

    • Bay has no idea how to make a good action scene at all !
      Shaky Cam,close ups,every 2 seconds a cut..man it makes u so dizzy,you have no idea whats going on !

      A good action scene shows ACTUALLY what is going on,and the viewers can see..not guess ! Best examples here “The Rock” Car Chase..close ups of faces and quick cuts,terrible film making ! Another example is Transformers 2,opening scene Optimus is transforming..we are so close that we see nothing of the actual transformation..just a hud !

      Its not about fanboys…its about making a good Movie,and clearly this man is not good in it ! But yeah,every body to his opinion !


      • You forgot the slow motion 360 shot with dramatic music playing, and as a friend of mine pointed out there is usually a shot of an aircraft flying through smoke (used with reckless abandon in Pearl Harbor). As polarizing as Bay can be, for me it just comes down him being a one note director. Once you see the first Bad Boys and the Rock you have pretty much seen all of his movies. Aside from changes in the story (which seem irrelevant to him) and the fact that he now has CGI in his disposal, there is not much variety in what he does. But it makes money so he won’t feel the need to change, unless his success runs out.

    • I agree Bay is good when it comes to making good action scenes. Actually that’s the only thing he is really good at. But he doesn’t care.

    • What? Nolan’s action kicked ass in TDKR. Nothing wrong with them….stop complaining anyone can improve. Even Nolan did.

      • well, never mind. Bay is one man who doesn’t improve. Screw him.

    • Bay action scenes = everybody firing guns but barely hitting anything + reddish black explosions to fill space.

      • Like shoot/out with the cops and Bane’s army?

    • I kinda agree with you there.
      If there’s one thing Bay can do, it’s action sequences… early on in Nolan’s career, he struggled with action scenes IMO (especially the fight scenes in BB and TDK), but Inception and TDKR have proved, to me at least, that he’s improved a lot in that department…
      Some of the fights in TDKR were still not as good as I would’ve wanted them to be, but all the other action scenes (like the football stadium and the Bane-plane scene for example) were truly incredible and much more memorable than Bay’s stuff.

  2. Bay’s interpretation of “Action scenes” is complete and utter chaos and that’s all he knows how to depict in his films.

    I really believe is wants people to feel disoriented and confused because that is what the majority of people initially feel when being attacked or in the middle of a war.

    His style might make sense for war films but there lies the problem. He tried to show transformers as a war film with robots and that’s not what people wanted to see.

    TMNT needs to be a complete departure from his normal interpretations and if they are truly going to be influence by the Raid then that might be a good start.

    • you know Michael Bay isn’t directing this… right?

      • … nobody seems to realize that I’m afraid. Haters are only looking for excuses to attack him.

        • Exactly.I completely agree. I guess it’s the new “cool” thing now on the internet, attacking someone like they know him personally.

          • We know his work !
            And in art,you his work..you know his Soul !

        • Producer has more influence over a production than the director.

          • Los was going after how Bay directs (Shaky cam etc etc). My point was that he is not directing. He is producing, so he won’t be in charge of shooting action sequences a certain way and the movie won’t have his style. Does that make sense?

      • but he is putting his name on it and defending it.

        • Putting his name on it as marketing. l bet it will be bigger on trailers then the director’s name

  3. don’t get things twisted? How about making some sense.

  4. Michael Bay is a big fat lying piece of, you get the idea.

  5. Bay is a symbol for everything wrong with Hollywood.

  6. Bay’s action scenes are kick-ass. I’m sorry, but that’s the truth. Anyone remember how, in Transformers 2, Optimus Prime blasted half of Megatron’s face off, then blew him through a few walls? And then ripped The Fallen’s armor off, stabbed the villain with his own spear, and then punched right through his chest? Or how about the Chicago invasion sequence in Transformers 3? It was dark, saddening, and was effectively similar to 9/11. I know I was a bit taken back when I saw that.

    Michael Bay may not be a sophisticated director, or a great director. Yes, many of his movies have bad acting, scripts, and humor. But as far as action goes, Bay’s the master. And since was explosions and hot chicks a bad thing? Really people.

    • It is really fashionable to look down on Transformers and Bay and such that people forget what they are: action movies, guilty pleasure. If there is one thing bay is good at is directing action scenes.

      TDKR’s action was tiresome and boring. TDK had good action. BB intentionally had shaky cam. It was supposed to give the impression that Batman is quick.

      • ^^This

    • Optimus Prime being so vicious was completely wrong for Prime’s character. He may have had the same voice, but I didn’t see the real Optimus Prime up there on that screen.

  7. Keep attacking Michael Bay, in the end you all know you’re going to go to see the film, make him earn a lot more money, and then bash the film online and put more “Bay must die” comments. That I believe, is the very definition of hypocrisy…

    I’ll wait for the finished product with the hope that it will be as great as it should be (I can’t lie, that supposed script is s***, so I’m glad someone said “no” to it)

    P.S. I don’t get the whole point of “why did they drop the ‘Teenage Mutant’ from the title!?” in many countries, “Ninja Turtles” or some translation was always the way they marketed this thing… and for gods sake, it’s only a title!!

    • I refuse to see anything Michael Bay is apart of because he destroys everything I love about film.

      • So are you saying that you never watch any of the transformer movies, the rock, bad boys, pear harbor. Or was it after You saw all of these movies that you now decide that he destroys the movies for you.

        • I can say that I never did until they were on TV.

          • Yeah me pretty much yeah, well l saw transformers 3 in 3D but l never payed for a ticket so

    • Yeah you keep on telling your self that 😉 I thought his films where cool and awesome and then I studied film and story telling for 5 years. After that I realized his films really actually had no core, no value or soul. They where pure pop corn films. Meaning. They are in the same box as hunger games and twilight.
      Just saying.

    • Most of us are trying to prevent the final product…
      Ive seen several michael bay film and really have nothing good to say or remember about them…

      • CODY
        thats exactly if I could say it short, is what Im trying to say.

    • “P.S. I don’t get the whole point of “why did they drop the ‘Teenage Mutant’ from the title!?” in many countries, “Ninja Turtles” or some translation was always the way they marketed this thing… and for gods sake, it’s only a title!!”

      Well, it’s actually not, seeing as how the title describes the main characters.

    • I don’t think I paid to go see the original Ninja Turtles movies because even those seemed a bit campy to me, so I doubt I would go see this incarnation as an adult. As for Bay, I don’t fall on the fanatical side of those people who wish death on him, but I don’t think I have paid to go see one the films he has directed in the movies. I have gotten roped into a few of his Platinum Dunes horror remakes, but those have even fallen into the wait of it to be on cable list.

  8. I actually really like “The Rock.” But that’s probably about it from Bay, lol. I’m sure I really only liked it because of Sean Connery though…

  9. Does anyone remember the dragonball movie, utter crap cause they deviated away from what made it great in the first place

    • Ugh! Don’t remind me.

  10. Bay does lie a lot.

  11. This movie is going to be a steamy pile of human waste… and Michael Bay sucks.

    That is all.

  12. Acually my comment was…


    Can you honestly say to me that wouldn’t be a good movie?

    • l would actually watch that. Heck seen it 3 times already still not tired of it

      • I´ve actually seen it 15 times. But ‘I am the real Michael Bay’ had me at “hot chick”…

    • I lol’ed 😛

  13. It was called ‘Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles’ in Britain

  14. i have this weird feeling that some how Bay is going to pull this off :O

    • I still don’t think this sounds as bad as people making it out to be… The reason the TF movies sucked was cuz they were about Sam and not the transformers. This is MY problem with the turtles script – casey and april being teens. That’s what scares me…the shifting of focus from main characters to real life ones with our heroes as background…

  15. I understand Bay isn’t directing. That’s fine because he doesn’t have to. He’s in the Summer Blockbuster business and Ninja Turtles isn’t Summer Blockbuster material. Some may disagree but that’s my opinion and I’ll stick to it.
    My problem is with the production company that he’s a part of Platinum Dunes. The company that doesn’t seem to produce new properties but instead focuses on rebooting or remaking horror films that end up being complete junk. While I’m sure the company is profitable which is all that matters to them as far as the films they produce are concerned I’m hard pressed to think of a good one in the bunch.
    So it’s hard to be optimistic about NT when you think of PD track record. Could NT be the film to break the mold? Sure. Does anyone think that will actually happen? Doubtful…

  16. Why does everyone attack bay? i mean yeah we get it you don’t like him…. but people obviously like his movies enough for them to make a profit. so what if all his movies are filmed pretty much the same? I mean thats the way he films it why should he change? All of you haters point out all his mistakes and i bet 95% of you cant even film half as decent as he does. He may not be the best out there but he is definitely not the worst

    • “but people obviously like his movies enough for them to make a profit.”

      He panders to the lowest-common-denominator with explosions and special effects. That’s how he makes his money. It doesn’t make them “good” movies. Some people want to see what’s before and after the “OH EM GEE! EXPLOZIONZZZZ!!!!”

      • Overwhelming eyecandy overwhelms rational thinking.

    • The problem with Bay isn’t that all his movies are the same. HE OBVIOUSLY KNOWS WHAT HE LIKES. It’s that what he does does not always benefit the movie. Black stereotypes and crude humor in Bad Boys work. But I wouldnt go putting those things in a giant robot movie based on a toy franchise. If you just indulge in what you want, to the deterrent of the source material, without the skill to elevate the material, don’t sit there expecting everyone to “chill” while you stuff a liked name with unrelated things.

      David Cronenberg took a stupid movie about a human fly and made it better and poignant and real and dark. Michael Bay takes children’s franchises and makes them somehow more stupid.

      And yes I didn’t believe Bay was directing this until I read about Colonel Schraeder. Anyone else think he hired Wiseman after a sweatey, naked watching of Battle: LA? DAT MILITARY ACTSHUN!

  17. Bay is such a liar. Bay would have been involved for almost two years according to the date on the script.

    • Dude, Bay did not write the script he’s just giving the money to shoot the film. Why can’t everyone understand that

      • Why can’t you understand that his position is above the director and the writers? He’s their boss. He can have little to no involvement, or he could influence them to make what he wants them to make. And since the thing reads like Transformers…

  18. I think Bay is telling a half truth. I had heard from someone working on pre-production that the “Turtles from Space” idea had finally been scrapped. That was in Late May, very early June. A week later, the news broke that the project had been put on indefinite hold.

    So apparently, in Bay’s world, 3 months is a long time LoL!

  19. Why can’t Michael Bay just take the hint and put an end to this ridiculous idea? It’s obvious that nobody wants this reboot to happen.

  20. Michael Bay = overblown spectacle with zero character development. This movie is going to b10w chunks.

  21. Hey Mike, “chill out”.

  22. Would all of you guys PLEASE go watch all the bonus features to the Transformers films and then you will see how hard it is to make movies like he does….Like Really.

    • I’m sure it is. TMNT is not like Transformers.

    • Just because something is difficult to do, doesn’t make it good.

    • Films have always been hard to make, and with the amount of explosions and stunts Bay likes to do it’s only natural it will be more labor intensive. On the other hand he now has the luxury of computer generated images at his disposal, so it’s not nearly as bad as people have had it in the past.

      Watch the making of Apocalypse Now or even the original Star Wars and you will see how the difficulty of movie making has decreased in some areas due to technology.

  23. Why is there so much fanboy buthurt over the Ninja Turtles movies… I dont remember every fanboy bitching that there was no ark or nemesis in transformers 1. And he’s producing that damn movie, not writing, not directing but throwing money at it. Just keep calm!

    • The producer has influence over the writers and director.

      We don’t have to keep calm. First Amendment; deal with it.

  24. This article is about the TMNT movie script that people hated, and even though Bay said he wasn’t using that script, all the comments are full of Bay bashing and movies he directed.
    I find it funny how people just love to hate on Bay. As was said before, he’s not directing this.
    I’m sure the next update about this movie will again have most of the comments hating on Bay, regardless of what he says.
    I’m just going to wait until we have something more concrete, and am willing to wait until the movie before passing judgement.

    • Producer is the director and writers’ boss.

      • So why don’t people hate Steven Spielberg then? He was the executive producer on all 3 Transformers movies, which is what a lot of the hating on Bay is the result of.

        • Because Bay and Spielberg have two different styles. Spielberg lets the movie get made without offering any input. Bay… is the opposite.

          If you read the leaked script, you’d see the script had Bay’s fingerprints all over it.

          • Even though he said that it was written before he or his company became involved and it was tossed? It seems that people just want to assume the worst without any real evidence.

            I’m not a Michael Bay fanboy (loved Transformers 1 but was disappointed with 2 & 3) and I’m not saying that he’ll make this movie awesome. I have high hopes for a TMNT movie that will recapture the magic of the first one, and I don’t know if this one will deliver or not, but at least I’m willing to wait until something more concrete before passing judgement and becoming part of the crowd of Bay bashers.

            • No evidence, ehh? Not even an article from two years ago that announced Michael Bay and Platinum Dunes as the producers of a TMNT reboot?

              That’s the thing; we don’t want to wait. By the time the first trailer comes out, it’s too late already. You assume that Bay deserves a chance. He’s been giving it time and time again with reboots. And most of those times, he has not delivered. Give someone else a turn.

              • Well, I was going by what was written in this article, which says that the script “was dated as having been completed in January of this year, roughly a month before Michael Bay and Platinum Dunes were attached”.

                I’m not sure what is going to appease the fans at this point though, short of kicking Bay off this project – which I don’t think is going to happen because his movies have brought in loads of $$$, which is exactly what the people making the decisions are going for.

                I just hope it’s similar in quality to Transformers 1. And at least Bay listened to the outcry from some of the things that were wrong with TF2 (dorky humour etc.), so maybe he’ll listen to the fans that want something that will do the series justice.

                • See, that’s why you have to do your own research. If you did, you would have found that he was on board for much longer than he claims.

                  What would appease the fans is, well, adapting the source material correctly. That’s what makes most animation adaptations a lot better than their respective live-action adaptations; there’s too much ego involved with the producer and/or the director to make it “theirs”; completely not keeping in mind that they can make it theirs without changing a detail. How can you sell it as TMNT when it doesn’t even resemble TMNT?

                  And as for hoping for its quality when it comes out; there’s no guarantee that it’ll happen. The production shut down, and with this controversy, it adds onto the obstacles involved with starting it back up again.

                  • Yeah, I hope they can adapt the source material properly.

                    I meant appeasing the fans as far as Bay’s involvement is concerned. It seems that even if he said he’d do that, people would still not be happy.

                    I’m all for giving the TMNT fans something that will do them justice, and was part of the outcry when they said the turtles would be aliens. At this point though I think properly stated criticism/requests rather than blind Bay bashing will have more of a chance of being heard.

                    Option 1: Michal Bay sucks. He should not touch this project. He should go die.

                    Option 2: Please give us the film that we’ve been waiting for. Something that won’t disgrace the Turtles’ name and discard their origins, and that will have the things we remember from when we were kids which the other films lacked

                    I think option 2 will have more of a chance of making a difference.

                    • Option 2 would be preferable… if Michael Bay would actually sign off on it.

  25. I was really shocked when i found out that they were gonna make the turtles aliens i’m as big a fan as anyone is loved all the old movies watched all them with my best friend (who is also a big fan) when we were kids and had a total blast. But i was really shocked my first response was “what the hell, they can’t do that” but then i realized something that i try to always keep in mind

    -In the world of movies there is no you can’t do this you can’t do that, you have total freedom of creativity and the ability to trust your artistic instincts, and thats what makes it so much fun working in that department not the money or the fans or anything the freedom and the fun.

    So after i told myself that i realized that maybe there is a chance that this can actually be good and according to Bay and everybody else that little piece of the script that everybody is hating right now is an old draft and there not even using it at all (personally i find it a relief because i didn’t care for it that much).

    So as cliche and corny as it sounds you guys have to have faith in this movie i know most or maybe all of Bay’s films are all about sexy people and explosions and they don’t focus so much on story but i gotta say based on what i hear from everybody thats working on this movie it sounds like they have a fantastic story although it sounds very different from what we all grew up with.

    ANd all of the original creators and even some of the original cast members say that the take on the characters and the story is abosolutely magnificent and great.


    So please guys take it easy don’t just flip Bay and Libesman off already just because there doing something different, why is it that so many people are against different these days i’m just curious.

    At least wait for the first trailer to be released and then you can start flipping it off, lets give them a chance i liked Wrath of the Titans a lot i think that they can make this into something special so lets sit back and find out.

    My favorite thing about the movie universe is the unkown is exciting :)

    • You do know Peter Laird didn’t say that it’s great, right? In fact, he said he really didn’t like it.

    • By the way, if you actually read the leaked script, you wouldn’t be saying what you’re saying.

      • Highlander was a cool movie until they turned the immortals into aliens, too…

  26. “The leaked script for Ninja Turtles that different sites continue to comment on was written well before I, or anyone at Platinum Dunes, was involved with the project.”

    Does that mean, the movie is gonna be even worse (I´ve read parts of the script and I hated every line of it)?!

  27. Pearl Harbor…With Will Smith…On Alcatraz…In Space

  28. Mr. Bay…….if you want to to just wait then all you have to do is tell us that the Turtles are not “aliens” and you ARE staying true to the original story. This means they are mutated earth turtles, they have Ninja skills, and are battling the ancient Japanese clan; The Foot.

    You do that and maybe we will give you the chance you seem to think you deserve. 😉

    • ^^THIS

  29. ….if you want US to just….

    It’s late 😛