I knew it was a bad sign when it was announced that Michael Bay’s Platinum Dunes production company had taken over the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles live-action reboot a couple of years ago, but I tried my best not to jump to any conclusions. Perhaps this would be their chance to branch out and hire someone other than a music video director or Hollywood jobber to direct one of their uninspired remakes… right? We hadn’t really heard much about the project since 2010, and it was starting to look like maybe it would just quietly fade away, which at this point, probably would have been for the best. Alas, this week we have an update on who might direct the film, and it’s not a particularly compelling choice: Jonathan Liebesman, director of Battle: Los Angeles and the upcoming Wrath of the Titans. Bossa Nova? More like Chevy Nova.
According to Variety, Liebesman is in negotations to direct the new TMNT film, with Michael Bay, Brad Fuller and Andrew Form all producing. The latest draft of the script was written by Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec (Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol), although John Fusco (Young Guns II) previously had a crack at it along with Art Marcum and Matt Holloway (Iron Man). At one point they were aiming for a 2012 release but that no longer seems to be the case.
In theory, I’m not against a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot. I wouldn’t even mind seeing a slightly darker take on the characters drawing more from the comics than the cartoon. However, after seeing the pure emptiness of Battle: Los Angeles, I don’t have much hope for this anymore. Liebesman also directed The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning, Darkness Falls and The Killing Room… in other words, prepare to have all the fun sucked right out of the Turtles! What do you think, could Jonathan Liebesman still deliver an interesting take on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles or did this project just take a definite turn for the worst?