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Old 04-16-2019, 08:56 PM   #1
rich
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The TMNT #1 Production Negatives

Hi everyone,
As we near the 35th anniversary of the TMNT which celebrates the release of TMNT #1 1st printing (May, 1984), I wanted to do something really special. I recently acquired a huge piece of comic book history that most of you TMNT comic book fans will be interested in - The TMNT #1 Production Negatives. Their provenance and usage was previously unknown / unconfirmed but I have unlocked the mystery behind them. I'm now revealing their story through a multi-part series, a new part released every few days. Tomorrow I'll be releasing Part 08 of the series, in which their provenance is revealed (along with the story of their acquisition). It's a great time to pick up the series and then, as you have time, catch up on the previously publishing articles in the series. I think you'll enjoy seeing these treasures presented publicly for the first time.
Looking forward to having you all along for the ride. The TMNT #1 Production Negatives
-rich
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Old 04-16-2019, 10:41 PM   #2
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Iíve been keeping up with the posts for this via the collection site. Pretty interesting to see the behind the scenes history of where it all began. Do these negatives now belong to you Rich or are they out on loan?
Iím not sure if you are doing all the research on these but either way, thanks for sharing it all!
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Old 04-16-2019, 11:05 PM   #3
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I’ve been keeping up with the posts for this via the collection site. Pretty interesting to see the behind the scenes history of where it all began. Do these negatives now belong to you Rich or are they out on loan?
I’m not sure if you are doing all the research on these but either way, thanks for sharing it all!
Awesome! Glad you've been following along. What's to come ( especially starting with tomorrow's Part 08 ) will be the most exciting parts of the whole story. And, although this info. is part of what's in tomorrow's post, I'll provide a preview for you. The negatives now belong to me and are part of my collection. I've also done every bit of the research on them and have been able to establish their full provenance. You're going to love Part 08...it's a seriously fun ride. Great to have you on board!
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Old 04-17-2019, 07:30 AM   #4
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Itís unbelievable how much mystery was surrounding these considering their importance. It sounds like the previous owners didnít even know what they had. Although if Kevin and Peter arenít entirely sure about their existence I guess it makes sense. That just makes them even more interesting!
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Old 04-17-2019, 07:36 AM   #5
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Itís unbelievable how much mystery was surrounding these considering their importance. It sounds like the previous owners didnít even know what they had. Although if Kevin and Peter arenít entirely sure about their existence I guess it makes sense. That just makes them even more interesting!
Agreed! It was staggering how much speculation there was about these but few solid facts. And what you know to date is just the first part of the whole story. Wait until you see the evidence from the pages of TMNT #1 itself. This is what will make you go "no way!"

I've reached out to Peter but he hasn't responded. Kevin was very interested in them. I think Peter would be too. At least the info. is out there. If Peter ever wants to chime in he can.
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Old 04-17-2019, 07:45 AM   #6
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Impressive passion project here!
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Experience the TMNT Fan Commentaries!
Check out my TMNT fan comic, "Nothing to Fear"!
View my sketch work!
I'm selling some of my hard-to-find TMNT items!
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Old 04-17-2019, 08:07 AM   #7
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Impressive passion project here!
Thank you! I hope you're enjoying it. It is a labor of love...and I love to geek out over the fine details. Appreciate you stopping by.
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Old 04-17-2019, 12:24 PM   #8
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Keep all the juicy info coming!
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Old 04-17-2019, 01:23 PM   #9
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Itís cool and all but as a collector, Iíd still want the original art pages which went up for auction years ago. I guess as an adult collector, Iím picky about what takes up space in my collection and what I invest my money into. Iím glad you bought them so you could share. It is interesting. I know itís something I never would have pulled the trigger on personally.
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Old 04-17-2019, 01:50 PM   #10
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Keep all the juicy info coming!
Definitely will!

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It’s cool and all but as a collector, I’d still want the original art pages which went up for auction years ago. I guess as an adult collector, I’m picky about what takes up space in my collection and what I invest my money into. I’m glad you bought them so you could share. It is interesting. I know it’s something I never would have pulled the trigger on personally.
Heck yeah! I'm with you there. The original art pages would be epic...the ultimate treasure. At a million bucks, my collecting funds couldn't quite stretch that far. But, these negatives were created directly FROM those original 40 art pages and came before the 1st & 2nd printing books - responsible for the creation of the first 10,000 copies of TMNT #1 ! These might not be the original artwork but they are literally the next closest thing.
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Old 04-18-2019, 06:29 AM   #11
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Definitely will!



Heck yeah! I'm with you there. The original art pages would be epic...the ultimate treasure. At a million bucks, my collecting funds couldn't quite stretch that far. But, these negatives were created directly FROM those original 40 art pages and came before the 1st & 2nd printing books - responsible for the creation of the first 10,000 copies of TMNT #1 ! These might not be the original artwork but they are literally the next closest thing.
Very cool Rich. My gut always told me these were something special and so happy they ended up in your collection where they can be appreciated. You should try to track down that other production piece from TMNT 1, the printers proof. These are perhaps one of the first copies of the original art and a vital part of making TMNT 1 come to life. Enjoy!
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Old 04-18-2019, 06:55 AM   #12
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Very cool Rich. My gut always told me these were something special and so happy they ended up in your collection where they can be appreciated. You should try to track down that other production piece from TMNT 1, the printers proof. These are perhaps one of the first copies of the original art and a vital part of making TMNT 1 come to life. Enjoy!
Thanks so much! It was a real journey to get these authenticated but wait until you see some of the upcoming evidence from the pages of the books themselves. It's really cool.

A few years back I was attempting to work a deal with someone for some un-trimmed copies of a few of these early books (I think with no covers) but never was able to land them. I suspected those were all printer proofs of some type but I'm not sure if #1 was part of that. Would have loved to have those but I'm not sure what happened to that guy. He just went silent and stopped responding.
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:21 PM   #13
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I simply LOVE historical discoveries like this-- I'm not quite sure how I missed this one. Great job on the research, on explaining old printing processes/techniques. I love non-digitial processes. From Eastman/Laird's art to final books, all via photochemical reproduction.

It's REALLY cool when pieces like this end up with collectors that appreciate the history, the old school processes, etc.

Have you hit up IDW for any potential publishing uses? Were the original inked pages scanned before being sold off to collectors? Have you personally done any archival digital scanning with the negatives? I've been scanning a bunch of original studio 8x10 negatives from Ghostbusters for a documentary project. Large format negative scanning is a HUGE pain to do correctly!

I'm sure you know, but elements of the cover printing were sold several years ago. I believe the red plate negative? I'm not sure about the others. Eastman also sold an early press proof during a huge auction several years ago.

Simply insane. Congrats on the score.
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:36 PM   #14
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I simply LOVE historical discoveries like this-- I'm not quite sure how I missed this one. Great job on the research, on explaining old printing processes/techniques. I love non-digitial processes. From Eastman/Laird's art to final books, all via photochemical reproduction.

It's REALLY cool when pieces like this end up with collectors that appreciate the history, the old school processes, etc.

Have you hit up IDW for any potential publishing uses? Were the original inked pages scanned before being sold off to collectors? Have you personally done any archival digital scanning with the negatives? I've been scanning a bunch of original studio 8x10 negatives from Ghostbusters for a documentary project. Large format negative scanning is a HUGE pain to do correctly!

I'm sure you know, but elements of the cover printing were sold several years ago. I believe the red plate negative? I'm not sure about the others. Eastman also sold an early press proof during a huge auction several years ago.

Simply insane. Congrats on the score.
It's such great fun to revisit history through these critical pieces of TMNT history. Especially pieces that never should have survived the years. So glad you found the articles and enjoyed the series. Thanks for reading.

I am considering possibly making the discovery and provenance of these negatives (basically the articles I wrote) into a trade paperback. I've also considered maybe a reprint of TMNT #1 that comes directly from these negatives. But, all that really is just in the "thought" stages now. I'd need to approach IDW (Nickelodeon / Viacom) and see what is legally possible. Could be that I partner with IDW on something like that but nothing in the works at the moment.

I have fully scanned all the negatives at high resolution and have a ton of photo / scan documentation (as you can tell after reading the articles). But, I'm not using any real techniques that I'm sure would need to be done to actually use the scans I've made for production. If the negatives are ever used to reproduce a copy of TMNT #1, I'm sure it would need to be done in-house by a print shop again (and, I'd actually want it done as closely as possible to the old methods to make a really nifty collectible).

As for the cover negatives, I've never seen them before but if you have some info. about who bought them or where they are, when they sold, etc. I'd love to get more detail. Feel free to ping me via IM to chat further about that. I never did see that a cover negative was sold in the past so I must have missed that. I do recall Eastman's printer proof being sold a while back and I'd love to track that down and acquire that to go along with the negatives. I'd love to have the cover negatives as well but I don't know where those are, if they even exist and, if so, who owns them.

Thanks again for reading.
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Old 05-23-2019, 12:59 PM   #15
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PM sent, my man.
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Old 05-23-2019, 05:45 PM   #16
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IDW needs to rerelease the older TMNT comics before the cartoon even came out (I MEAN 87)

I want to read where the TMNT came from and I don't want to go online or buy a used copy for that
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Old 05-23-2019, 09:31 PM   #17
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IDW needs to rerelease the older TMNT comics before the cartoon even came out (I MEAN 87)

I want to read where the TMNT came from and I don't want to go online or buy a used copy for that
IDW has already reprinted much of the early Mirage and Archie stuff. You shouldn't need to buy used (original) copies outside of TMNT Vol. I #18, 24-30, 35-36, & 41.
Some examples for you of IDW books that are already available:

SINGLE ISSUES from IDW
- TMNT Color Classics #1-11 + Don, Leo, Mike, & Raph One-Shots (Mirage TMNT Vol. I #1-11 + four Micro-Series - in color)
- TMNT Color Classics Vol. 2 #1-7 (Mirage TMNT Vol. I #12, 14-15, 17, 19-21 - in color)
- TMNT Color Classics Vol. 3 #1-15 (Mirage TMNT Vol. I #48-62 - in color)
- TMNT 35th Anniv. Box Set (collects TMNT Vol. I #1-4 + Raph Micro-Series in oversized format) not yet released - due out June 19 currently

TRADE PAPERBACKS (TPB) from IDW
- Tales of the TMNT Vol. 1-8 TPBs (collects Mirage Tales of the TMNT Issues #1-7, Tales of the TMNT Vol. 2 #1-24)
- TMNT Adventures Vol. 1-16 TPBs (collects the Archie TMNT Adventures issues #1-72)
- TMNT Color Classics Vol. 1-2 TPBs (collects Mirage TMNT Vol. I #1-13 + Micro-Series issues)
- TMNT Classics Vol. 1-9 TPBs (collects TMNT Vol. I #13, 16, 22-23, 27-29, 32-34, 37-40, 42-47, Mirage TMNT Vol. II #1-9)
- TMNT Ultimate Collection Vol. 1-3 TPB (collects TMNT Vol. I #1-11, 12, 14, 15, 17, 19-21 + Micro-Series)

HARDCOVERS (HC) from IDW
- TMNT Ultimate Collection Vol. 1-6 HCs (collects TMNT Vol. I #1-12, 14-15, 17, 19-21, 48-62, one-shots & short stories)
- TMNT Legends Soul's Winter HC (collects TMNT Vol. 1 #31, 35-36)

Last edited by rich; 05-23-2019 at 09:39 PM.
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Old 05-24-2019, 12:46 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by rich View Post
IDW has already reprinted much of the early Mirage and Archie stuff. You shouldn't need to buy used (original) copies outside of TMNT Vol. I #18, 24-30, 35-36, & 41.
Some examples for you of IDW books that are already available:

SINGLE ISSUES from IDW
- TMNT Color Classics #1-11 + Don, Leo, Mike, & Raph One-Shots (Mirage TMNT Vol. I #1-11 + four Micro-Series - in color)
- TMNT Color Classics Vol. 2 #1-7 (Mirage TMNT Vol. I #12, 14-15, 17, 19-21 - in color)
- TMNT Color Classics Vol. 3 #1-15 (Mirage TMNT Vol. I #48-62 - in color)
- TMNT 35th Anniv. Box Set (collects TMNT Vol. I #1-4 + Raph Micro-Series in oversized format) not yet released - due out June 19 currently

TRADE PAPERBACKS (TPB) from IDW
- Tales of the TMNT Vol. 1-8 TPBs (collects Mirage Tales of the TMNT Issues #1-7, Tales of the TMNT Vol. 2 #1-24)
- TMNT Adventures Vol. 1-16 TPBs (collects the Archie TMNT Adventures issues #1-72)
- TMNT Color Classics Vol. 1-2 TPBs (collects Mirage TMNT Vol. I #1-13 + Micro-Series issues)
- TMNT Classics Vol. 1-9 TPBs (collects TMNT Vol. I #13, 16, 22-23, 27-29, 32-34, 37-40, 42-47, Mirage TMNT Vol. II #1-9)
- TMNT Ultimate Collection Vol. 1-3 TPB (collects TMNT Vol. I #1-11, 12, 14, 15, 17, 19-21 + Micro-Series)

HARDCOVERS (HC) from IDW
- TMNT Ultimate Collection Vol. 1-6 HCs (collects TMNT Vol. I #1-12, 14-15, 17, 19-21, 48-62, one-shots & short stories)
- TMNT Legends Soul's Winter HC (collects TMNT Vol. 1 #31, 35-36)
I'm gonna buy the 35 anniversary boxset

Thanks for these links
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