Ernie Reyes Jr. TMNT Consultant Pitch

Ernie Reyes, Jr. Martial Arts Consultant NINJA TURTLES (2014) Pitch Reel from Chancler Haynes on Vimeo.

Ernie Reyes Jr. is best known throughout the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fandom for his role as Keno in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze movie. He is also  known as Donatello’s stunt double in the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle film that came out in 1990.  Since those two films, his name has remained in the fandom as many fans remember his work and loved his skills.  In 2009, Ernie was brought in to judge an open audition for the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles film in Hollywood, which has since raised the question will Ernie be back to work on TMNT?  Recently, a new video has popped up online.  This video is a pitch for Ernie to help be a consultant on the new Ninja Turtles film.

As a kid, Ernie grew up around martial arts his full life.  With his father being a teacher in martial arts, Ernie competed in many tournaments and was noticed by the movie industry and even landed him his own TV series.  By the age of 9, Ernie was beating adults in competition and people knew he was going far.  His background in martial arts is sound, his skills are impressive and his name is remembered.

scriptrdIn the late 80’s, Ernie was brought into Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the first film.  His younger brother, Santino, was already a fan and was excited that his brother was going to be a Ninja Turtle.  Not only did Ernie do a wonderful job at bringing Donatello to life, he impressed the people behind the movie so much that in the sequel, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze, he was given his own character to show his skills outside of a big foam costume.  He handled his own fight scenes and made it so this new character would shine to the fans.  To the left, the photo is of Ernie’s hand written notes in his script from TMNT II for what he wanted to do in the fights.

This history, along with his personal skills, makes Ernie a great person to go to for knowledge on the martial arts.  The difference here is that he is not asking to be in the film, nor is he looking to take the role of the Fight Choreographer.  Ernie is simply putting himself out there, offering to be a consultant, see where they’re going and suggest things he thinks may feel more real, while still holding the fans at awe in how the moves are performed.  Ernie wishes to be able to help insure battle scenes that will have the new and old school fans begging for more, while having these fighting turtles look believable. This is something Ernie helped do with the original Ninja Turtle Films, which still holds strong to viewers to this very day.

My personal thoughts on this is that one of the reasons Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles has been successful is because of the realism that follows them, the character growth, the personalities, the look, and the fighting skills.  The fighting skills can make or break a show as each character needs not only to look impressive on the screen with a good sidekick, but to keep it looking great while showing a flash of their own personalities through and having that kick look real, matching up with other moves that follow through just as believable.  It is important to have that keen eye in knowing when something will look real or fake to fellow martial artists.  I have always felt that Ernie Reyes Jr. is someone that can pull that off.

When the original films came out, I was a kid in school.  I did not know too much about martial arts, nor did I study anything at the time.  Ernie Reyes Jr stood out in the films though.  His style as Keno was so impressive that I had to find out more about him.  I picked up magazines that shared his stories, I found reruns of the tv series Side Kick where he was the star of the show.  I felt inspired by him.  It is not just because he was a Turtle or even in a Ninja Turtle film.  My fandom for Ernie is beyond that, because I feel that Ernie has what it really takes.  He is gifted in the martial arts.

So do I feel he would make a great consultant for the newest Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie?  Yes, I do.  While I know there are other great martial artists out there, Ernie is one that is great and already has a fanbase in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles fandom.  He is not looking to make this about himself, he’s not trying to throw himself in the costumes or have his face on the screen.  While we all know it would be totally awesome to see a cameo from Ernie in the film, knowing that he could be using his skills and knowledge to help from behind the camera is a fantastic idea.  An idea that I fully support.

While the fans are supportive of this idea, the people who truly count are those working on the film from the producers to the directors.  I personally hope that they see this call out from Ernie offering his skills to the film and I really hope that they do decide to bring him on board.

What are your thoughts about Ernie Reyes Jr. returning to TMNT? Do you like the idea of him being a Martial Arts Consultant?  Would you prefer to see him on the big screen?  Let us know your thoughts!  All reviews, questions and comments are welcomed below!

Entertainment Earth