A live-action TMNT: The Last Ronin adaptation is officially in the works - and it's rated R

TMNT: The Last Ronin - The Lost Years #5 cover art by InHyuk Lee
(Image credit: IDW Publishing)

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin is one of the most popular TMNT stories of all time, and it's become a definitive part of the Turtles mythos. Now, its legacy will be cemented even further with a live action film, which will aim to preserve the tone of the original comic with an R-rating, per The Hollywood Reporter.

The film will be produced by former head of DC Films Walter Hamada, with THR also reporting that screenwriter Tyler Burton Smith, who wrote 2019's Child's Play remake, will pen the script for The Last Ronin.

Though The Last Ronin isn't a horror story at all, it does carry some of the most mature themes and darkest subject matter of any mainstream incarnation of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Set in a world where Michelangelo is the last living Turtle - IE 'The Last Ronin' - the story follows Mikey's violent quest for revenge against the Foot Clan.

The Last Ronin was originally told in a five issue comic limited series released from 2020-2022, though it takes its basic concept from an idea initially thought up by TMNT co-creators Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird way back in the '80s, in the early days of the franchise.

Eastman himself is a co-storyteller on the comic, with writer Tom Waltz, artists Jacob and Esau Escorza and Ben Bishop, colorist Luis Antonio Delgado, and letterer Shawn Lee rounding out the creative team.

TMNT: The Last Ronin also led to a current sequel series titled TMNT: The Last Ronin II - Re-Evolution, which focuses on the four younger turtles who will take the place of the original TMNT in the alt-future timeline of The Last Ronin. 

A video game adaptation of The Last Ronin is also in the works.

In the movies, 2023 brought the release of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem, an animated feature that reinvented the TMNT for a younger audience in a new incarnation that has also proved popular among fans.

Paramount has not yet announced a release date for the TMNT: The Last Ronin movie.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic line is about to undergo a big relaunch as the main TMNT title hits #150.

George Marston

I've been Newsarama's resident Marvel Comics expert and general comic book historian since 2011. I've also been the on-site reporter at most major comic conventions such as Comic-Con International: San Diego, New York Comic Con, and C2E2. Outside of comic journalism, I am the artist of many weird pictures, and the guitarist of many heavy riffs. (They/Them)