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These Are Michael Bay’s Ninja Turtles

Not that we’re looking forward to Michael Bay’s Ninja Turtles movie or anything but we were interesting to find out who he’d be casting as Leonardo, Raphael, Donatello, and Michelangelo. Now we know they’ve hired actors from The Hunger Games, Twilight, Parks and Recreation, and Galaxy Quest

Many TMNT fans were disappointed to hear Megan Fox had been cast as April in the reboot film. And we were surprised. While she had a past working relationship with Bay, their friendship had seen better days. But the casting news seemed to point to them smoothing over their differences.

But of course the bigger question was – who would be playing the turtles?

Deadline reported Smallville’s Aquaman and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’s Gloss, Alan Ritchson would be playing Raphael. They then had a follow-up report naming the other three. Jeremy Howard, who’s had roles in Galaxy Quest and Breaking Bad will play Donatello. Actor Pete Ploszek, who’s only other credits are Parks and Recreation and Shameless, will be Leonardo. And finally, Noel Fisher, who played Vladimir in the Twilight Saga, will take on Michaelangelo. MTV says Fisher may also be up for a role in the Fantastic Four reboot.

All signs are pointing to the turtles being created using performance capture (ala Avatar) this time around. Thoughts on the casting/approach?

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  • Anonymous

    I don’t want to start a flame-war here, but have you ever seen such white white people in your whole life? Claim to authority: I am a super-duper white person.

  • Anonymous

    Teenage Stepford Ninja Turtles …

  • Jamie Jeans

    Wow, look, it’s the reunion tour of High-Fivin’ White Guys!

    Kudos to any 90s Late Night Saturday viewers who get that reference…

  • Rowena White

    I can’t help feeling massively disappointed by the all white cast chosen for the movie, where the heck is the main cast diversity??

  • Jamie Jeans

    Hey look, it’s the reunion tour of High Fivin’ White Guys!

    Anyone who watched late night Saturday Comedy shows will most likely get that reference…

  • Lynn St Martin

    Thoughts? This is going to be horrible. I’m not even mildly optimistic anymore.

  • Rachel Campbell

    I enjoy Jeremy Howard. He’s also very entertaining in Sydney White. I’m still convinced this entire movie will be an abomination against God and man, but the casting of the turtles doesn’t bother me one way or another.

  • Nicole Elizabeth Currie

    So…they, for the most part, forgot the ‘teenage’ part? Because only one of them looks teenage.

  • Aeryl

    In continuing the question about why these white dudes, do they have martial arts experience? I mean, if *I* were casting the turtles, in a performance capture movie where physical characteristics are secondary importance, my primary concern is “Can they move like ninjas?” If so, I could (somewhat*) forgive Bay this monochromatic casting, but if they are just joe-schmoes with no martial artistry experience that will have to be replaced for the fight performances anyways, what’s the point? Why not just cast the fight performers?

    *I say somewhat, because let’s say that these dudes all have martial arts expertise, that still doesn’t forgive that it wouldn’t have been that hard to find a martial artist of color either. But I guess they all had to be blond haired and blue eyed, because BROTHERS, idek.

  • R.O.U.S.

    If it’s motion capture, qualifiers like ‘white’ and ‘teenaged’ no longer matter. Agreed that actors with martial arts experience would make more sense. But hey, who are we to question the unimaginable genius of Bay.

  • Emily Martin

    Their whiteness is blinding me.

  • Free hat

    why is the fact that there all white guys matter? In the first ninja turtles movie they where all white guys in the costumes/voicework.

  • Betty Windsor

    I’m really behind on the news for this movie, but are they being cast as voice actors?

  • Anonymous

    It’s more likely that stunt people will do motion capture for the fight scenes and these four will do the non-fight scene motion capture and voice over. Similarly the TMNT movies of the 90s had one set of actors in the suits and another doing the voices.

  • Anonymous

    None of them look like turtles either.

  • Aeryl

    I know that’s more likely, my question is why? Technology like performance capture(which is different that motion capture, the difference between Avatar and Beowulf) makes that unnecessary. The fight performers can do the entire physical performance, and they can use voice actors for dialog, just like the old turtles movies, instead of requiring two physical actors.

  • Aeryl

    Because we are better now than we were then.

  • Anonymous

    “Not that we’re looking forward to Michael Bay’s Ninja Turtles movie or anything” -or ANYthing from Michael Bay in any capacity whatsoever.

  • Anonymous

    I think the answer is that the motion capture for the four gents in this article will let them convey the nuance of character that a stunt performer would not. Why wouldn’t we want the actors to bring all their skills to the performance of the turtles and have the stunt people bring theirs to the fight choreography?

  • Aeryl

    Yes, because I’m sure that’s the NUMBER ONE concern in a Michael Bay movie, nuance of character./sarcasm

  • Anonymous

    Teenage Mutant Midwich Cuckoos

  • Anonymous

    In fairness, with all the things we’ve heard about what Mr.Bay wants to do in the film, the color of the people in the turtle suits is fairly low on my list.

  • Elizabeth Dawn

    Why? Because the casting director sees them as up-and-comers. I agree it is an awfully Anglo cast and even the voices were diverse in the past… But that doesn’t mean the casting is bad. They may have other reasons for casting who they did.

  • Amanda Lalonde

    Ugh, this keeps sounding worse and worse! Although, I will admit that Noel Fisher(the last blonde on the right) is really great in Shameless. But knowing that this is a Michael Bay movie, with Megan Fox and these are the guys to play the turtles, my hopes that this will be even semi-decent keep getting crushed!

  • Anonymous

    Any hope for quality or human dignity pretty much ends with the words, “Michael Bay.”

  • Anonymous


  • Steven Ray Morris

    pretty sure they are clear…

  • Jennna

    They really should have hired Nolan North. He already was a turtle, and has so much experience with motion capture. Damn you Michael Bay.

  • Mindy Williams

    can you actually picture Vladimir saying “Cowabunga”?! I just tried and lol

  • Joanna

    *weeps for my ruined childhood*

  • Anonymous

    I could easily get behind that, or go with:
    -the 2k3 cast
    -The modern cast
    -the Classic 80s cast

    But either way, we still have Bay’s hand over this as producer so I’m not expecting anything could have really saved it. :/

  • LifeLessons

    OMG. This is exactly what I was going to post. Couldn’t we have some diversity here?

  • Anonymous

    This is disgusting…

  • Anonymous

    It should be about who is best for the role, not forging your precious “diversity”. But that said, he definitely picked all the wrong people anyway.