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Cast Announced For ‘Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’!

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Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles


With the 2012 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series wrapping up after five seasons, Nickelodeon is going to give the pizza-loving ninja reptiles another shot with a reboot! The new series, titled Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, is set to shift back to the franchise’s 2D-animated roots, as well as providing a brand new voice cast, which Nickelodeon has just announced (via The Hollywood Reporter).

So who do we have to fill in the turtles’ shells? Firstly, we have Josh Brener (the DuckTales reboot) to voice Donatello, the mech-tech genius of the four brothers. Omar Miller (Ballers) will voice Raphael, the biggest brother in size and the leader. Ben Schwartz (also from the DuckTales reboot) takes on Leonardo, the self-proclaimed “coolest” of the brothers. And finally, there’s Brandon Mychal Smith (You’re the Worst) as Michelangelo, who is the youngest, yet imaginative brother.

No Turtles incarnation is complete without the regular allies, however. On the turtle’s side, we have street-wise New Yorker April O’Neil (voiced by Swiss pop singer Kat Graham), and wise sensei Splinter (voiced by Eric Bauza). Bauza previously voiced Tiger Claw, Hun, and the Fulci Twins in the 2012 CGI series.

Cast of Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

From left to right: Kat Graham (April O’Neil), Josh Brener (Donatello), Omar Miller (Raphael),
Brandon Mychal Smith (Michelangelo), Ben Schwartz (Leonardo).

Set to begin with 26 episodes in 2018, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will serve as a 2D-animated retelling of the heroes in the half shell, where they encounter new friends and foes, and discovered an unexplored mystical world under the New York City streets.

Chris Viscardi, Nickelodeon’s senior VP production and development for animation, stated that: “This incredible roster of voice actors provides a fresh take on these globally recognized characters, and they are going to bring this version of the Turtles to life in a whole new way. We have reimagined the series to be filled with humor, loads of action and a dynamic look, and it’s packed with all-new heroes, villains and cityscapes for the Turtles to explore.”

Another noteworthy aspect of this reboot is that it will be directed by veteran voice actor Rob Paulsen. Paulsen should indeed be a familiar name to Turtles fans since he voiced Raphael in the original 1987 series and Donatello in the 2012 series. Andy Suriano (character designer of Samurai Jack) and Ant Ward (supervising producer of the 2012 Turtles series) will serve as co-producers.

As a big Turtles fan, Omar Miller (Raphael) said: “I used to sing the TMNT theme song daily on the bus on my way to elementary school and Raphael was my favorite Turtle. To get to voice this fictional character who had such a giant positive impact on my childhood is an honor. And to boot, I’m being directed by the man who voiced Raphael in my childhood.”

For me personally, I haven’t seen much Turtles-related stuff, though I am curious to explore the franchise more if I get time. As for Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, it’ll be interesting to see how this reboot will be played out in 2D animation, which I think could have a stylised Samurai Jack-like look since we have Andy Suriano as co-producer. Hopefully, we’ll get more details on the reboot when the new year arrives.

Are you excited for this new take on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? What’s your favourite incarnation of the franchise? Let us know in the comments below!

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About Karl Smith

Deep down in New Zealand, Karl "Karlamon" Smith is a Kiwi who is passionate in animation, seeing it as an artistic medium that expresses vast creativity and brings unique characters and worlds to life. Whenever an animation-related fact pops up, it will more than likely be cemented in his brain for a long time. Some of his favourite animated movies include Zootopia, Balto, Bolt, Over the Hedge, The Fox and the Hound, the How to Train Your Dragon series, The Iron Giant, and The Prince of Egypt. Prior to contributing to Rotoscopers, Karl has served as a bureaucrat on Ice Age Wiki, and a moderator/site builder/news reporter on Animation Source. Karl is also a Computer Science graduate who is now studying Digital Design in university. That, and with his additional fascination in aviation, he hopes someday to be both an animator and a pilot (if that is even possible).
  • amelia Gronvall

    Yes, FINALLY! The 2012 TMNT is going to end.

    Now, I know I have probably insulted some fans out there, so sorry for any offense. But on one hand, I personally hated that series. I watched some episodes here and there, but overall, I just found the whole thing annoying.

    Now, I know TMNT was always goofy and is especially catered to children…But on one hand, I kind of felt like this series in particular tried “too hard” to be “goofy” and it just came off as cringe worthy. And not to mention, the cgi wasn’t really that good. I mean, it’s a tv show. So it isn’t going to look like it would in a movie. Still-I just really couldn’t get behind the cgi designs. It lust looked kinda cheap and lack luster….As well as the animation.

    (To note, when the Duck Tales reboot had been announced, I had low expectations about it. Especially since the duck triplets were being voiced by these “comedians”. After watching the pilot, I was still “meh”…But I decided to give it another try. After doing a binge on all the episodes that have come out so far, I LOVE it! And it’s nice now having the ducks with different voices instead of sounding like a “younger” Donald Duck. I also like that they have different personalities)

    Long story short, I am kinda of looking forward to this reboot. I think it will have a pretty fair shot at being good; due to most of the voice cast being from the Duck Tales reboot. Secondly, I LOVE (and I can’t express this enough) that they are going to do 2D animation!!! I miss this form of animation A LOT, as we are seeing less and less of it in the animation industry.

    Let’s just hope NICK doesn’t go the Teen Titans route…Because I really don’t want to see the turtles portrayed as random, internet meme, crude, weird, and stupid. I want to see story lines and characters like that of the comics mixed with some good FAMILY (NOT kiddy/juvenile) fun.

    • Manuel Orozco

      I don’t blame you. As much as I enjoy Tangled the Series, Hotel Transylvania the Series, Spider Man, Star Wars Rebels and the new Ducktales, I’m a bit cautious these days when it comes to animated shows. Especially after my love/hate relationship with Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends in my early teens.

  • Manuel Orozco

    The only TMNT material I ever enjoyed was the recent live action movies. This seems like an interesting reboot especially when we got two of the new Ducktales cast members on board. Plus I haven’t been into a Nicktoon since Avatar ended nine years ago just before I started high school. So it’s a wait and see for me

    • Dana Lamps

      I still can’t get on board with the new movies. Turtles are too OP.

      • Manuel Orozco

        They were awesome