There’s a brand new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie now in theatres everywhere, and given that this is the 30th anniversary of that first edition of the black and white comic that started it all, what a better time for retrospective could there be? In the new documentary, Turtle Power: The Definitive History of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, a team of Ontario filmmakers doggedly pursued the history of the franchise, and the result can now be screen on Netflix, or bought on DVD.
In an interview for Nerd Bastards, I spoke to director Randall Lobb who spent five years tracking down and interviewing as many people associated with the Ninja Turtles as humanly possible. He interviewed TMNT creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, the people that created the Turtles toys at Playmates, the voice cast and crew of the first Ninja Turtles cartoon, and the people involved in creating the first Ninja Turtles live-action movie in 1990, then the most successful independent movie of all time.
A lot of people may scoff at the idea of spending five years of you life chronicling the history of a pop culture icon about four pizza-eating martial artist vigilantes that happen to be mutated, humanized turtles named for Renaissance artists, and Lobb might be among them. He wasn’t always a Turtles fan, but he chased his subject with vigour and has put together an insightful movie with a rare completionist collection of the various players who have brought the Ninja Turtles to life in various forms for three decades.
Read the full interview with Randall Lobb here.