Saturday, June 22, 2013

Blast from the Past #653: March 8, 2005: Re: Fourth Rev. Treatment and March 28, 2005: Re: first pass animation

Subj: Re: Fourth Rev. Treatment
Date: Tuesday, March 8, 2005 3:55:46 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Kevin Munroe


Here are my comments on TMNT movie treatment #4.

1.) I don't really have much to say! Thanks for consideration of/inclusion of many of my suggestions. I think we are on solid ground here, and unless something unforeseen comes up in the discussions we're planning to have in Northampton, I can see progressing to the script stage from this treatment.

2.) One thing about the ending -- given that a lot of the tension/conflict in this story comes from the friction between Leo and Raph, I thought it might be cool to give the two of them a "moment" either after we see Casey and April roar off on Raph's bike, or just before. Maybe we could tie it in with the "Raph gives up Nightwatcher" scene -- I'm thinking something like this: Raph is standing on the edge of a rooftop... he's got his Nightwatcher costume crumpled up in his hands. He's looking at it... obviously conflicted (at least a little bit)... then suddenly, silently (ninja-like!) Leo is beside him. Leo could say something supportive to Raph, something about like he thinks Raph doesn't HAVE to give up Nightwatcher completely. But Raph shakes his head... he says something to Leo about that part of his life not being so important to him now (still, it was kinda fun)... and with a rueful grin, he drops the beat-up costume off the edge of the roof, and we follow it as it flutters down and lands in a Dumpster or trash can. 

Cut back to Raph and Leo... they share a look, then do something which demonstrates their affection/respect for each other (a cool handshake, a big hug, whatever -- actually, it might be cool if Leo offers the handshake (thinking macho Raph wouldn't dig the hug) and then Raph surprises him by giving him the big hug). Then Raph says "Looks like it's gonna be a beautiful night, bro... how about a training run?" Leo grins back at him, they "slap three", and says "Let's do it!"

Just then, they are startled by another voice -- "Got room for one more?" -- it's Don, who has crept up on them with ninja stealth. He twirls his bo staff as Leo and Raph grin. Then we hear off screen footsteps running -- the three Turtles whip out their weapons in a defensive flourish -- and in leaps Mikey, a little out of breath (we don't immediately see his whole body, especially his head, but we hear his voice saying something like "Wait for me! I ran all the way here..."). Leo, Don and Raph, share a look... then Leo says (long-suffering tone) "Uh... Mikey..." and points.

Cut to a medium shot of Mikey -- he's still wearing his "Party Turtle" costume head! "What? What?!" he says... then realizes. "Oh. Oops..." and takes off the head. "Sorry..." MIkey whips out his 'chuks...

... and all four Turtles, in perfect TMNT form, leap off the edge of the building... and we freeze frame on the four... brothers once more! The end. Run credits.

-- Peter


Subj: Re: first pass animation
Date: Monday, March 28, 2005 1:01:56 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Kevin Munroe


I meant to get this out to you on Friday, but got caught up with weekend Easter stuff.

The new clip is very cool -- it's exciting to see the progress. I think the Turtles, specifically their heads, still need some tweaking. But I'm loving the overall feel of it.

The ending dolly in to the manhole cover with the TMNT logo on it seems a bit too abrupt -- I think it works better if you get more of a feel for WHERE that manhole cover is (i.e. in the alley the Turtles just disappeared from). RIght now it happens so quickly it doesn't really feel like part of one continuous shot.

Also, while the final "leap off the building into the alley" thing works -- and I like the new up shot -- it occurred to me after watching it several times if it might be more exciting, and more fun, if -- instead of cutting just as the Turtles leap off the building, then switching to that up camera angle -- we had the camera FOLLOW the Turtles off the edge, and then FALL faster than they do, all the while panning UP and BACK so that we end up on the ground in that UP angle, but we've had a cool little vertigo moment before it.

And I'm still not sure about the beginning, where the Turtles are all facing forward, and then turn around and head off backwards/sideways. There is something about it which still doesn't work for me -- maybe it needs some tweaking. Maybe it happens too abruptly. I do think that it might be a good idea to try having them leap FORWARD instead -- maybe have a brief bit where Leo turns his head to make sure that the others are with him, then he (and they) leap forward.

Look forward to the next iteration!

-- Pete


Subj: Re: trailer sample
Date: Sunday, May 15, 2005 9:21:32 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Kevin Munroe

In a message dated 5/13/05 1:25:43 AM, Kevin Munroe writes:

<<I'm going to try and upload at least one shot (maybe just a couple of seconds) to the folder. HOpefully give you a better taste of what's to come. I'll do that within the hour tonight under "trailer renders".>>


Did you manage to do this (above)? Maybe I'm doing something wrong, but I can't find anything like that on the ftp site.

I've been having fun re-watching the teaser trailer Quicktime movie -- tonight I went through it frame by frame a couple of times, and got a better idea of all of the cool stuff the animators are doing with the Turtles' movements. By the way, I love the way that light post wobbles when one of the Turtles lands on top of it -- very nice.

It got me thinking... I'm going to a small comic show in Portsmouth, NH this coming Sunday (the 22nd) -- it's kind of a return to origins thing, as this show is being put on by the same guy who put on the show back in May of 1984 where Kevin and I premiered the first issue of the TMNT comic. I'm even doing a special 3000-copy reprint (same number as the original first printing) of the first TMNT comic with all-new tones and lettering. 

I think it would be very cool to do some kind of "teaser print" (maybe a hundred or two) of one or more frames from the teaser trailer, to hand out to the fans who will be there. I've gone through the trailer and have frame-grabbed five possible frames which I think fit the bill of being visually interesting but not giving too much away (though the shot of Leo, Raph and Don in the alley might be pushing that envelope). If everyone agrees that this is a good idea, I would need better/higher rez frames of these shots so that the prints would look best. I would also need to know what to put on these prints to cover all pertinent copyright issues.

Though obviously not vital, I think this is something that would be fun and keep those rumor mills churning. If I were to do this, I would need the higher rez frames by Wednesday of this week. Let me know what you guys think.

-- Pete

P.S. I'm attaching a jpeg of the five frames I grabbed.

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