[Interview] Kevin Eastman talks Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Supanova!
Updated: Feb 28
From humble beginnings to co-creator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird’s lives were forever changed in 1984 when the two started comic book company Mirage Studios and set in motion an insane journey of friendship, creativity and legend, setting the world on fire with the four green brothers named after Italian Renaissance artists.
Like so many kids of the late 80’s/early 90’s my entire world was turned upside down after seeing a kid at school with a small green turtle action figure with a red bandanna.
Many years later as an adult collector TMNT still has a massive impact on my life (and wallet).
While the Turtles have seen many different incarnations over the years, the respect and love for the four green ninja brothers is undying and something that is echoed through generations.
I caught up with Kevin Eastman in the lead up to his appearance at Supanova Comic Con and Gaming expo in Melbourne and the Gold Coast to talk all thing TMNT, what music influences his art, his relationship with Peter Laird, the massive affect his work has had on his fans and which Turtles incarnation he believes got it wrong!
Check out the interview HERE :
In 1982, while trying to sell some of his illustrations to local fanzines, he met Peter Laird in Northampton, Massachusetts and the partnership studio; Mirage Studios was formed. Less than a year later in the middle of a late night drawing session, Eastman doodled a new character he dubbed a “Ninja Turtle” to make Laird laugh—several sillier sketches and a final drawing of four characters later, Eastman and Laird’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles had officially entered the universe!
Self-published in May of 1984, the first issue sold out of its 3,000 copies overnight and quickly became a fan-favorite. Catching the eye of merchandising agents and Hollywood producers, Eastman and Laird maintained full control of their creations while guiding them through toy licensing, TV series adaptation, as well as feature film exploitation, and by 1989 the TMNT’s were number one in all three categories.
Thanks to “THE BEST FANS ON THE ENTIRE PLANET!” according to Eastman, after 35 amazing years the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles STILL continue to find their way into the hearts and imaginations of kids, large and small.
When not having way too much fun drawing the TMNT, he also launched three new series in 2015/16; Fistful of Blood, Lost Angeles, and Underwhere. In 2017/18, Kevin launched his first ever Kickstarter that was fully funded for his new projects, Drawing Blood and Radically Rearranged Ronin Ragdolls.
Kevin Eastman resides in San Diego with his wife Courtney (a.k.a. First Lady of the Turtles & VP of Kevin Eastman Studios), son Shane, three insane Dachshunds, and two bad kitties.
Supanova Comic Con & Gaming began in Sydney in 2002 as a completely home-grown Australian production showcasing sci-fi, fantasy, comic books, anime, manga, games, cosplay and much more. The brainchild of Founder & Event Director, Daniel Zachariou, Supanova is run by a diverse and passionate team of independent professionals with backgrounds in private industry and the creative sector. Supanova takes place in six cities (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and the Gold Coast), and is Australia’s leading and largest event of its kind with close to 180,000 fans expected to attend the Supanova events in 2020.
Supanova is a celebration of pop culture created by the Supanova family, for your family, to “bring out the inner geek” in fans of all ages.
Also signing on for Melbourne and Gold Coast is witch and Whitelighter dream team Holly Marie Combs and Brian Krause, who helped shape pop culture TV through their roles on Charmed.
They join previously announced March guests George Lazenby (On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Legit, Batman Beyond), Kevin Eastman (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles co-creator), Leah Clark (My Hero Academia, Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid, Fairy Tail), James O’Barr (The Crow creator) and Gaku Space (Overwatch) and more.
VIP and Supa-Q passes will go on sale on Tuesday, 4 February via Moshtix.
Melbourne: March 7-8, 2020 | Melbourne Showgrounds
Gold Coast: March 13-14, 2020 | Gold Coast Convention & Exhibition Centre
TICKETS: on sale now through Moshtix