Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu is a 1991 tokusatsu series, part of the Technic Heroes franchise.
Trained in the legendary art of Spinjitzu by the wise Master Wu, a group of young ninja (Kai, Jay, Cole, Zane, Nya, and eventually Lloyd and Mina) with mastery over the elements fight to defend their land against those who wish to conquer it.
- Ben Ivanson as Master Lloyd Montgomery Garmadon
- C. Thomas Howell as Kai
- Rick Jones as Jay Walker/Gordon
- Kerry Shale as Zane
- Hiro Kanagawa as Cole
- Duncan Baker as Zane
- Chiara Zanni as Nya
- Magnús Scheving as Lloyd
- Jesse Vinet as Mina
- Neil Shee as Sensei/Master Wu
- Charles Nelson Reilly as Lord Garmadon
- Andrew Kayos as Dareth
- Hannah Scott as Mistaké
- Saul Rubinek as Dr. Julien
Development and Production
The idea for Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu was created by stuntman Kenny Cameron and Technic Heroes writer Sung Gim over dinner at the International Gentlemen's Bistro in El Kadsre City. Pasi Peure and Qasim Amjad thought the idea wouldn't work as El TV Kadsre was already producing ninja-related material at the time, and told them to drop it. However, Canadian actor Kerry Shale, who went on to play Zane, convinced Qasim to give the idea a chance.
El TV Kadsre started out casting in El Kadsre City, putting up audition notices in The El Kadsre City Morning Report and The Western Journal. Over 200 men, women, and children showed up to audition at El TV Kadsre Television Centre. The ones that remained after selections got to watch through several ninja-related material and Technic Heroes films before preparing for filming. The next auditions were held in London, U.K. at Earls Court Exhibition Centre with 400 people showing up after an audition call was posted in News of the World and the Daily Mail, along with "a more snarky call" in Private Eye. All three auditions called for a mix of "British performers, North American expats, and British performers who can do North American accents". American auditions then commenced after the British actor selections in Los Angeles at Bob Hope Patriotic Hall and in New York City at the Paramount Theater, with 500 people showing up in Los Angeles and 200 people in New York City. According to Pasi, "several of the people that showed up to them left both auditions when they heard it would be about ninjas fighting other ninjas and various supernatural forces." From the Los Angeles audition was C. Thomas Howell selected to play Kai. Finally, Canadian auditions commenced in Montreal at Blue Bonnets Raceway. 600 showed up to these auditions. From all the groups were much of the main, regular, and supporting casts chosen.