Saturday, October 24, 2009

Nickelodeon acquires Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Splinter flips rehabbed sewer dojo to Viacom

Turtle power has a new home.

Nickelodeon has closed its $60 million deal to purchase the once iconic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles property from The Mirage Group, which has been involved with the Turtles since their creation in 1984 and 4Kids Entertainment, which led a nicely designed and thoughtfully executed re-launch of TMNT in 2002.

Nickelodeon wasted no time in sending a strong message that its ownership of TMNT will have almost immediate impact on the Turtles' profile, announcing plans to develop a CG-animated TV series and a new feature film with Paramount, targeting 2012 for debut of both.

The transaction will put the Turtles in an improved position to regain relevance as the property struggles through its 25th anniversary year in a popularity ebb. Fans of the Turtles are sure to receive news of the sale to Nickelodeon with mixed emotions, as it apparently marks the end of involvement by the Turtles' creators, Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, in every medium featuring TMNT except comics.

TMNT episodes that it co-produced by 4Kids and Mirage will continue to air on the CW Network through the end of the 2009-2010 broadcast season.


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