It’s been almost two years since any word has come out regarding the future of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, but Paramount Pictures seems poised to see the titular heroes return to the big screen once again. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the studio has hired writer Andrew Dodge (Bad Words) for a new Ninja Turtles movie which will be another reboot, ignoring the previous two live-action films.
The franchise is set around four humanoid turtles mutated by an experimental ooze named after four Renaissance artists, Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello and Michaelangelo, who protect New York City using ninja skills they have acquired through the teachings of their rat mentor, Splinter, who was also transformed by the ooze as well.
After a successful live-action film series in the ’90s and a popular revitalized TV series in 2012, Paramount used the rights purchased by Nickelodeon to reboot the film franchise with CG turtles instead of practical suits, and though the film earned very negative reviews from critics, it was a box office hit, grossing almost $500 million on a $125 million budget. This success spawned a sequel which, while not nearly as financially successful as the first film, did receive moderately more positive reviews from critics.
However, due to its lower gross, the future of the franchise was put into doubt, with producer Andrew Form saying back in October 2016 there were no new plans for the franchise, but with Jim Gianapulos stepping in as Paramount CEO last year, a push for more quality content across all of the studio’s films and franchises has factored into the planning for the Ninja Turtles.
Dodge’s debut script Bad Words was a surprise success after landing on the 2011 Black List, shortly picked up afterward by Jason Bateman who turned it into a picture for his directorial debut that he would also star in. Dodge also currently worked on the screenplay for the long-in-the-works sequel to the 1996 hit Space Jam.