The Frida Cinema was transformed into the gritty streets of 1990 New York City when Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was brought back to the big screen. Hosted by Nostalgic Nebula Entertainment, the evening consisted of free pizza, collectible “Foot Clan” T-shirts and headbands, a live musical tribute, and a Q&A following the film with the composer, John Du Prez.
The film was the first ever live-action depiction of the “heroes in a half-shell” and tells the story of Leonardo, Michaelangelo, Donatello, and Raphael; four turtles that mutated after coming into contact with a mysterious green “ooze”. They were raised by Splinter, a mutant rat from Japan who teaches the four brothers the art of ninja so that they may use it to defend the streets of New York.
After the film, composer John Du Prez took the stage to share some behind-the-scenes stories and answer a few questions from the audience. Du Prez shared that he had gotten the job after scoring the critically acclaimed “A Fish Called Wanda” and really knew nothing about the Turtles lore before coming onto the project. He also noted that he had chosen to give the film’s score a bit of an 80’s hip-hop background to fit the culture of New York City at the time, as well as provide a sense of fun amidst all the violence in the film. This notion proved to be successful as he was later told by one of the film’s producers that the film wouldn’t have gotten a U Certificate (The British Film Board equivalent of a “G” rating) had it not been for Du Prez’s music.
Du Prez also shared a few stories of what it was like to work on the second and third TMNT films as well. He humorously delivered an apology for Vanilla Ice’s “Ninja Rap”, claiming that was put in on the insistence of a producer’s teenage son. He also noted that while he’s proud of all the films, he felt the first was his favorite.
For more information on upcoming Nostalgic Nebula screenings, follow them on social media @nostalgicnebula.