‘TMNT’ Filmmakers Talk Aliens & Dimension X in ‘Ninja Turtles’ Sequels

Published 9 months ago by

TMNT 2 movie Krang and Dimension X by Jon Lambe TMNT Filmmakers Talk Aliens & Dimension X in Ninja Turtles Sequels

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was an ambitious franchise reboot for Paramount Pictures – but it appears to have (literally) paid off, as TMNT won the box office this past weekend, thereby guaranteeing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2‘s arrival in 2016.

So now that the TMNT brand has proven itself viable enough to live on into sequels, it’s time to start looking ahead to what other exciting parts of the franchise lore the filmmakers can incorporate into this live-action universe – as they did with so much of the first film’s story. Prior interviews with the cast and crew have already revealed that fan-favorites like Casey Jones, Bebop and Rocksteady are already likely candidates for upcoming TMNT installments – but there is definitely a much more ambitious path the filmmakers could follow, as well.

tmnt movie trailer 2014 ooze tcri TMNT Filmmakers Talk Aliens & Dimension X in Ninja Turtles Sequels

If you’ve seen Ninja Turtles (2014) then you know that the movie incorporates a revised origin story that nonetheless incorporates a lot of original mythos – including the mutagen from TCRI that is responsible for transforming the Ninja Turtles and Master Splinter into humanoids. In the original comic book series, the TCRI origin opens the door for a much bigger intergalactic adventure for the Turtles, as the discover that the mutagen ooze – and subsequently the company that made it – are extraterrestrial in nature.

What follows is a Planet Hulk-style showdown on alien worlds, as the Utroms (a.k.a. the alien race of Krang) and the Triceratons (humanoid triceratops aliens) go to war with the Ninja Turtles in the middle. Subsequent revisions of the mythos have tied the TCRI origin to Dimension X, the hellish dimension Krang hails from. In the 2012 TV series, for example, the portal between Earth and Dimension X was hidden in TCRI by the alien Kraang.

TMNT 2012 The Kraang TMNT Filmmakers Talk Aliens & Dimension X in Ninja Turtles Sequels

The Kraang in TMNT (2012) TV Series.

There are many ways to approach the material – whether sticking closer to original cartoon series, the original comics, or later iterations of both – but in order to get to a lot of things TMNT fans want to likely see next, the filmmakers would have to go to some pretty outlandish places. So how willing are they to go that route? Apparently, pretty willing.

We sat down with TMNT movie director Jonathan Liebesman and producers Bradley Fuller and Andrew Form, where we talked point-blank about how the franchise could incorporate some of the more interstellar/cross-dimensional mythos and characters:

Screen Rant: I was going to save this next question for later, but it seems like we’re building off of it anyway. I mean I’m familiar with the old comics. I wanted to ask you guys, going forward, we saw a lot of Easter eggs from the comics – particularly like TCRI and things like that. I know where the TCRI story leads in the comics [spoiler: aliens]. Would you guys ever go so big and so sci-fi?

Jonathan Liebesman: Dimension X?

Screen Rant: Yeah.

Jonathan Liebesman: F*ck yes.

Brad Fuller: I think what we need to do is we need to see how the movie does.

Jonathan Liebesman: I’m assuming your question comes from…

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Sequel Krang Dimension X TMNT Filmmakers Talk Aliens & Dimension X in Ninja Turtles Sequels

Screen Rant: …if there’s an opportunity for another one.

Jonathan Liebesman: I would love to. I mean it’s not up to me. It’s up to all of us to decide.

Brad Fuller: But we’ve talked about those worlds already.

Andrew Form: There are scripts that have been written for this movie that integrated those worlds into it already…

Jonathan Liebesman: They were just too…it made the movie a bit too unfocused for this particular story.

While the first TMNT installment may have had a lot of obligations to meet – like re-introducing the characters and mythos to both longtime and new fans – the sequel has a lot more freedom to peel the curtain back even further and really dig into the mysteries of the where the mutagen originated from, and what it can do. Does that mean that TMNT2 needs to follow the original comics or cartoons and take things to alien worlds, with Triceratons and Utroms? No. But introducing Dimension X and a new antagonist in Krang (a talking alien brain thingy) isn’t that far of a stretch for a movie where giant reptiles fight like trained martial artists.

Utroms from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Cartoon TMNT Filmmakers Talk Aliens & Dimension X in Ninja Turtles Sequels

Utroms from the ’80s TMNT Cartoon.

With the box office totals still being tallied, it’s still unclear just how much budgetary space will be available for TMNT movie sequels. The money in the budget will, as always, trump whatever creative wishes fans OR filmmakers might have – so here’s hoping the first film makes enough to afford us the opportunity for a few more mutant beasts and talking brains in the next installment.

NEXT: Megan Fox Talks TMNT Sequels

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is now playing in theaters. It is 101 minutes long, and is rated Rated PG-13 for sci-fi action violence. Read our official TMNT review.

Want to hear the Screen Rant Editors have a more in-depth of review and discussion of the film? Then be sure to tune into our TMNT episode of the Screen Rant Underground Podcast. Or check out more of our interview with the director and producers.

Krang Header Art by Jon Lambe

Follow Kofi Outlaw on Twitter @ppnkof
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  1. I could’ve swore that when news of this movie was first coming out that they were going to give the Turtles an alien origin story which would’ve introduced a bigger universe and characters we’ve never seen on the big-screen before. That was when it was just going to be called Ninja Turtles. That would’ve been interesting and at least something new that we haven’t seen before. But then the fanboys started talking crap on the internet and the filmmakers got scared and made the most generic TMNT movie possible.

  2. Krang is not an Utrom

    • Man this is great…reading all these comments just shows the majority of the ppl complaining about the movie don’t really know anything about the Turtles and their many reiterations. Just a bunch of sheep or bandwagon jumpers.

  3. I’d love to see Krang, Bebop and Rocksteady. VERY MUCH!!! This movie was okay… It’s weakness was in the writing, not in the story itself. It was very altogether unexciting. The best part of the ENTIRE MOVIE was when the four turtles are in the elevator together making music with their weapons.

    • +1

  4. @mau5maufive

    He wasn’t called an Utrom in the show because the show never introduced the concept of Utroms. But its universally accepted he is now. There was a cameo of Krang in the 2003 show where he was a normal Utrom, pretty much accepting the character was indeed one.

  5. Well, I’m glad out of the 100% of people who saw it, 62% of those people actually liked it. Since it will be those 62% who will be expected to support/carry the next one… which will be interesting since TMNT is short 35mil from breaking even domestically, green lighting a sequel was probably a little premature.

    • You mean internationally because domestically it made 65 million if
      Paramount not lying about numbers again.

    • With a budget of $125M and an opening weekend haul of $65M just domestically, there’s literally no way they don’t make back their money. They’d make back their money if the budget was $200M and absolutely nothing else changed.

      Believe me, I’m just as pissed about it as you are, but it certainly wasn’t premature. The industry has gotten very good at crunching data and predicting sales trends, particularly the week before (and after) release. A $65M haul on a single weekend is pretty damn good, especially for August. If you include international, TMNT will be making its money back by the 10 day mark.

  6. Its TGRI not TCRI

    • ***they changed it to TGRI in the second movie cause the C stood for cosmic which had nothing to do with the the old turtle movies

  7. Buckaroo Bonzai Against The World Crime League, anyone?

  8. Get your facts right! TGRI not TCRI!!!!!

  9. must haves for ninja turtles sequel:

    1. more downtime with the turtles, more interaction with human actors
    2. more ninja fighting action and more graphic use of turtle weaponry
    3. casey jones
    4. rocksteady and bebop
    5. less ridiculous looking turtle van
    6. maybe krang and technidrome, but that might be best left for turtles 3.

    • If you bring Bebop and Rocksteady to the movie you should probably bring Krang into the movie also Because in the 1987 series Krang actually made Bebop and Rocksteady, and I don’t think there should be more downtime with the turtles because after all it is all about them

  10. It has actually switched between TCRI and TGRI a few times. Either one is legitimate.

  11. Krang as in Kang and Ultroms as in Ultron?

    Make the sequel happen. Marvel style! Ha.

  12. now where thalking!

  13. I would love to see a threatening Beebop, Rock steady, Rat King, Baxtor Stockman, and Leather head. these characters if focused on could be very special to the films.

  14. turtles are not reptiles

    • Kingdom: Animalia
      Phylum: Chordata
      Class: Reptilia (Reptiles)
      Order: Testudines

  15. Please do make a new TMNT film. Please Don’t do it with these people. Reboot the reboot. Good intentions do not equal good productions. Be selective in whom you select. This has been a disaster, do we really want disaster part duex?

  16. I was hoping for them to introduce the Purple Dragons into the next movie with Hun, and then possibly a third one where Shredder comes back and recruits Hun and Baxter Stockman

  17. Jeez. Corporate Reboot Cash-grab “Scary as sh*t” Turtles got green-lit(pun intended) for a sequel? And Michael Bay producing again??? Wonder what he got in store for the next bombing run. Bang! BANG! BANG!!!
    Bebop and Rocksteady to appear next? Someone has been taking serious notes watching Honest Trailers.
    Also wonder what shot would the director take next on Fox.