Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, or simply Ninja Turtles, were created in 1984 by two friends - Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird. The concept featured a team of four fictional mutant turtles trained by an anthropomorphic rat in the art of Ninjitsu. The turtles were previously known as Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles, in United Kingdom, Germany, Austria, Ireland and Scandinavia. The characters have appeared on toys, cartoons, video games, films and other merchandise, apart from their initial appearance in comics. The late 1980s and early 1990s saw the turtles gaining considerable success and fame worldwide. Read on further to interesting and amazing information on the history, origin and background of Ninja Turtles.
Interesting & Amazing Information On Origin & Background Of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
The concept of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, TMNT for short, was sketched by Kevin Eastman and his friend Peter Laird. Using the money from a tax refund and loan; both the artists self-published a single issue comic in May 1984. The comic was published by Mirage Studios in a magazine-style format, in black and white, with a limited 3,000 copies only. The concept was based on a team of four mutant turtles, who are out to battle petty criminals, evil megalomaniacs and alien invaders. The turtles named as Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael and Michelangelo are trained by an anthropomorphic talking rat, Master Splinter, who plays the sensei and adoptive father to them. Eventually, a bi-monthly companion book titled ‘Tales of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ was designed.
The series was published from August 1988 to October 1995 by Archie Comics. The comic was a success and became an even grander success when a licensing agent, Mark Freedman offered merchandising opportunities to Eastman and Laird. Dark Horses Miniatures produced a set of 15 mm lead figurines of the turtles in 1986. The company joined hands with Playmates Toys Inc., a small California toy company in January 1988. Playmates and their team came up with the ideas of a television mini-series to promote the sale of the toy action figures. The mini-series was launched three times, before it finally found an audience. The scripts for the same were written by David Wise, Michael Charles Hill and Michael Reaves, with inputs from veteran writer Jack Mendelsohn, collaborating writer Schulte and marketing maven Aaronian.
The show started selling and getting audience, while funds too came up for the next round of animation. Group W sponsored the next show that went on CBS (a major American television network). Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1987 TV series became a big hit off all times. The late 1980s and early 1990s saw the turtles on a wide range of children’s merchandise, from Pez dispensers to skateboards, breakfast cereal, video games, school supplies, linens, towels, cameras, and even toy shaving kits. The series also appeared as a daily comic strip from Monday through Friday, written and illustrated by Dan Berger. The comic strip featured in over 250 newspapers at its highest point of popularity, before it was cancelled in December 1996.
Dreamwave Productions released a monthly Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (TMNT) comic series from June to December 2003, inspired by the 2003 TV series. The current TMNT monthly comics are being published by Titan Comics. Cable channel Nickelodeon purchased all the Mirage Studios’ rights to the Ninja Turtles on October 21, 2009. Even then, Mirage still retains the right to publish 18 issues of Ninja Turtles every year. The Ninja Turtles have also appeared in four feature films, three of which were released by New Line Cinema, featuring live action with various actors portraying the Turtles in costumes with animatronic heads. The fourth movie was released by Warner Bros. that was an all-CGI animated film.