Ninja Turtles

Danny Woodburn

Oh, Danny Woodburn. It’s great to see that Cirrhosis of the liver with jaundice can’t keep a good man down. According to Deadline Hollywood, the Seinfeld actor has just been cast as Master Splinter in Jonathan Liebesman‘s Ninja Turtles – rounding out a cast that’s out of the left side of left field. Although that kind of goes with the alien-based plot they’ve cooked up, so let’s just go with it. On the one hand, it’s laudable to see some atypical casting. On the other, it all feels really bizarre. It’s also still unclear whether Woodburn will appear in the film itself or whether he’ll be lending his voice (and/or movements) to a CGI giant rat. Probably the latter. Is this project so weird it just might work or a year-long train wreck that we get PR emails about? Hard to say. Very, very hard to say. However, the one thing that Woodburn’s casting makes clear is the probability that Will Arnett will be playing the movie’s villain. Now the question is whether he’s an alien or a more earth-bound enemy. And that train wreck thing. There are a lot of questions that still need answers with this one.

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Remember that reboot of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise that Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes was making? The one that was just called Ninja Turtles and that spawned a bunch of fan debate when it was said it would re-write the turtles’ origins to make them aliens? Well, if you came down in the camp of those who were dreading a possible bastardization of your beloved childhood icons, the latest developments surrounding the film’s production might have you breathing a sigh of relief. Despite the fact that the film has already done quite a bit of pre-production for its planned shoot in Vancouver, THR is reporting that work has stopped on set and the film’s release date has been moved from December 2013 to May 2014. How long has work on the project been delayed? Some sources are saying ten weeks, but some are saying that they’ve heard the production’s hiatus will be “indefinite.”

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Well, kind of. According to The Province (via ComingSoon), the Jonathan Liebesman-directed, Josh Appelbaum- and Andre Nemec-penned, and Michael Bay-produced Ninja Turtles might start filming later this summer in Vancouver. Well, Canadians are by and large a very welcoming people. The outlet reports that word is out in “casting and pre-production circles around town” that the turtles are coming to the fair city to film a new version of the heroes in a half shell and their adventures in being both totally awesome and completely weird. As with most reboots/remakes/relaunches, this new film will be more “grounded” and “gritty” and, as producer Brad Fuller told us earlier this year, the film will likely use Rise of the Planet of the Apes-inspired motion-capture performance to tell its story.

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When we heard that Platinum Dunes and the director of Battle: Los Angeles were planning on rebooting Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, it was pretty easy to jump to conclusions about what type of film they would be making: gritty, lots of shaky-cam, and like most modern action filmmaking, trying to ground ridiculousness as much as possible. But Platinum Dunes producer Brad Fuller tells us that we should definitely expect a grounded, but not “gritty” take on a movie with alien turtles coming to Earth. Fuller also shared that a part of this “grounded” version may come courtesy of motion-capture. Based on Fuller’s tone and his love for Rise of the Planet of the Apes, it would be a shock if the filmmaking team behind the project do not go with mo-cap Turtles. Here’s what Brad Fuller had to say about Ninja Turtles:

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Have no fear, internet. April Fool’s Day is over, and (probably since it fell on a Sunday) the laundry list of fake casting announcements and crap development deals was relatively short. You can still check out our Print Edition of Film School Rejects, but here are a few good, bad and grotesque fakes that might need some clarification alongside a few geek products that should be real in a fair universe.

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From a family legacy to positive portrayals of black youth to showing up at the club with your kids, Mario Van Peebles and his son Mandela cover it all while discussing their forthcoming flick We The Party. To the bass beat of The Rej3ctz and Snoop Dogg, we discuss rising above racism, staying hip, heading out in a hoodie and a whole lot more. Plus, Hollywood.com Movies Editor Matt Patches joins us for Movie News Roulette and weighs in on Bully and Ninja Turtles. Download Episode #127

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Of all the critiques lobbed at the John Carter‘s marketing problems, one of the more devastating was that the name was boring and meaningless. Where do you go after that? How do you build advertising when your name is terrible (or worse: dull)? So, it’s in that spirit that, according to Bleeding Cool, the new Michael Bay-produced “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” movie will simple be called Ninja Turtles. Way to steal The Asylum’s rip-off title right out from under them.

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This week, on a very special episode of Reject Radio, we get experimental and allow you to listen to Neil Miller sleep for two hours. Andy Warhol would have been proud. Also…SXSW coverage.

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