Since its announcement, there has been a lot of skepticism and controversy surrounding Jonathan Liebesman's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot. Die-hard fans of the TMNT graphic novels and animated shows got behind the idea of an updated live-action film series but the attachment of Michael Bay and his Platinum Dunes' production house was, for many, a high profile red flag. After all, while Bay's Transformers adaptations have grossed billions at the box office, they also presented a number of contentious changes that upset (and still irk) die-hard fans.
For that reason, potential viewers have been hyper-vigilant, and for understandable reason, about the ongoing production of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, rolling their eyes at the casting of Megan Fox as April O'Neil and raging when rumors of an "alien" origin story were first reported. Yet, the last few months have given some Shell Heads reason to be optimistic - as Paramount Pictures revealed their redesigned Turtles at Toy Fair 2014 and debuted the first TMNT trailer.
Not everyone was sold but some fans became slightly more open to Liebesman's adaptation. Then came rumors that the movie was undergoing extensive reshoots, close to 1/3 of the film, which would result in a delay to Holiday 2014 - once again causing fans to question whether Bay and Liebesman were off track.
Like a lot of reports on the Internet, the original Geeks of Doom rumor was slightly exaggerated and we're now getting word that Fox was simply called back to set for pickup reshoots - which, for those who don't typically follow film productions, are relatively commonplace. Minor reshoots are often necessary once a director begins editing the film - for a myriad of potential reasons.
Liebesman may simply want to collect additional performance options for a key scene or he could be adding lines of exposition to help remedy problematic (or edited out) portions of the storyline. For example, should the director have needed to cut a scene that helps flesh out a principle character (for the sake of runtime), he might be using the reshoots to adjust the narrative accordingly and ensure that the same info is included somewhere else.
In response to the original delay rumor and photos of Fox back on set, the official Michael Bay website confirmed that any reshoots would not affect the current August 8th release date.
Check out the tweet below:
— Michael Bay Dot Com (@S4TE) April 1, 2014
Some Turtle-lovers were actually encouraged about the possibility of a delay - hoping that Liebesman (along with Bay) had decided to address fan concerns after mixed reaction to the teaser trailer. Among other complaints, design of the Turtle faces was an especially hot topic - with the shot of Michelangelo drawing unfortunate comparisons to DreamWorks Pictures' Shrek character.
A Photoshop enthusiast even reworked the designs to feature a more "traditional" take on the characters:
Yet, with only four months before TMNT's theatrical release, the best that moviegoers can hope is for Platinum Dunes to tighten up the quality of the CGI characters - since there's zero chance they'll outright alter the designs at this point. Toys, posters, and other pieces of tie-in content are already in production - featuring the heroes as they are depicted in the trailer.
As a result, the film is too far into production to make sweeping changes that certain Turtle fans might still be holding out to see. Hopefully, the reshoots, coupled with four more months of post-production, mean a better TMNT film overall - one that, despite its deviations from the source material, can capture the fun (and badass) spirt of the Heroes in a Half Shell.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will open in theaters on August 8th, 2014.
Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick for further updates on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as well as future movie, TV, and gaming news.Bill Murray Reteaming With Lost in Translation Director Sofia Coppola
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