Which ‘Ninja Turtles’ Characters Have Been Gender-Swapped In the Reboot?

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April O'Neil shocked in 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles' 2014

Credit: Paramount Pictures

The first trailer for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (2023) is finally here. But while it doesn’t show much, at last week’s Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards, producer Seth Rogen did unveil the entire cast along with their Ninja Turtles characters and beyond.

The cast contains quite a few surprises, and not only because it has some huge names like Paul Rudd, John Cena, Jackie Chan, and even Seth Rogen himself, but also because the film has seemingly gender-swapped two Ninja Turtles characters from the TMNT universe.

Raphael in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem teaser
Credit: Paramount Pictures / Nickelodeon Movies (via Nickelodeon’s 2023 Kids Choice Awards, YouTube)

Related: ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ Gets an R-Rated Reboot

As announced at the event, here is the full list of voice actors along with their respective characters:

  • Nicolas Cantu as Leonardo
  • Micah Abbey as Donatello 
  • Shamon Brown Jr. as Michelangelo
  • Brady Noon as Raphael
  • Jackie Chan as Splinter
  • Ayo Edebiri as April O’Neil
  • Seth Rogen as Bebop
  • John Cena as Rocksteady
  • Hannibal Buress as Genghis Frog
  • Rose Byrne as Leatherhead
  • Ice Cube as Superfly
  • Post Malone as Ray Fillet
  • Paul Rudd as Mondo Gecko
  • Maya Rudolph as Cynthia Utrom
  • Natasia Demetriou as Wingnut
  • Giancarlo Esposito as Baxter Stockman

While you might not be familiar with the character Leatherhead, who is listed next to actress Rose Byrne, most diehard Ninja Turtles fans will be. Leatherhead is a villainous mutant-humanoid alligator from the wider TMNT universe who has, until now, always been depicted as male.

Michelangelo in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem teaser
Credit: Paramount Pictures / Nickelodeon Movies (via Nickelodeon’s 2023 Kids Choice Awards, YouTube)

Related: Is the New ‘Ninja Turtles’ Film Canon With Any of the Previous Installments?

But now, with Rose Byrne attached to the role, we can only assume that Leatherhead will be female in Mutant Mayhem. Byrne’s fellow Brides Maids (2011) actress Maya Rudolph also appears in the cast list, as the villain Cynthia Utrom.

In the TMNT Universe, the “Utroms” are an evil, warmongering alien species whose most famous member you’ll know as Krang. However, as Cynthia Utrom appears to be a new character, technically, she hasn’t been gender-swapped, although it’s likely she’s the film’s equivalent to Krang (she may even turn out to be a female version of Krang, although, for all intents and purposes, it sounds like she already is).

Either way, we can’t wait to see what these incredibly talented actresses bring to the table in Mutant Mayhem. Forget “Turtle Power” — how about that phrase the Spice Girls often used!

Check out the brand-new trailer for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem below:

Related: First, Female Ninja Turtles, Now ‘TMNT’ Eyed For R-Rated Horror Reboot

As per Wikipedia, here’s the official synopsis for the film:

After years of being sheltered from the human world, the Turtles set out to win the hearts of New Yorkers and be accepted as normal teenagers through heroic acts. Their new friend April O’Neil helps them take on a notorious crime syndicate, but they soon get in over their heads when an army of mutants is unleashed upon them.

Raph, Donnie, and Mikey in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem trailer
Credit: Paramount Animation / Nickelodeon Movies (via YouTube)

Related: What Is the New Female ‘Ninja Turtles’ Sequel About?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem stars Nicolas Cantu (Leonardo), Micah Abbey (Donatello), Shamon Brown Jr. (Michelangelo), Brady Noon (Raphael), Jackie Chan (Splinter), Ayo Edebiri (April O’Neil), Seth Rogen (Bebop), John Cena (Rocksteady), Hannibal Buress (Genghis Frog), Rose Byrne (Leatherhead), Ice Cube (Superfly), Post Malone (Ray Fillet), Paul Rudd (Mondo Gecko), Maya Rudolph (Cynthia Utrom), Natasia Demetriou (Wingnut), and Giancarlo Esposito (Baxter Stockman).

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (2023) will be released in theaters on August 4, 2023. It is the seventh theatrical Ninja Turtles film.

Leonardo in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem teaser
Credit: Paramount Pictures / Nickelodeon Movies (via Nickelodeon’s 2023 Kids Choice Awards, YouTube)

Related: ‘TMNT’ Prequel Follows ‘Ghostbusters’ Reboot, Replaces Beloved Heroes With Female Turtles

There’s also another live-action Ninja Turtles reboot in the works from producer Michael Bay, however, there’s currently no release date for that film.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem official logo
Credit: Paramount Pictures / Nickelodeon Movies (via official Mutant Mayhem Instagram)

Related: “Footage” Surfaces For R-Rated ‘TMNT’ Reboot, Marvel Star Was Set For Lead Role

What do you think of all the changes Mutant Mayhem has made to certain characters? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments down below!

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