Ninjai: The Little Ninja took the world of ninjas, samurais, and other similar genres of TV shows by storm when it burst onto the scene in the 2000s. It went viral and spread across the early days of the internet it grew a strong fan following due to the unique style of the show and how it approached something completely different from other popular kinds of TV shows or anything available at that time. The precursor to popular martial arts-focused child protagonist-driven shows like Avatar: The Last Airbender – Ninjai provided a unique contrast between the titular character’s childish innocence and the action and violence he encounters. Grappling with powerful themes of good and evil, self-defense and aggression, Ninjai became known as a spiritual and philosophical martial-arts series unlike any other.
Ninjai – The Little Ninja outlines the adventures of Ninjai, a young ninja that wanders the ancient world in search of his true identity, battling all kinds of demons along the way. Ninjai has gained a wide fan-following around the world, and became renowned for its stylized fight sequences, showcasing top-level choreography and brutal action.
Interested in finding out more about Ninjai and his exciting adventures? This guide tells you all you need to know about Ninjai’s experiences and adventures, as well as a few similar warrior movies to check out and more.
Background Information on Ninjai: The Little Ninja
Ninjai is a young boy with the skills of a master ninja and the curiosity and innocence of a child. As he journeys through faraway lands and exotic locations in search of his identity and an old friend, he encounters all sorts of friends and enemies. While ninja movies and the ninja genre has been popular across the decades with all sorts of audiences, Ninjai has stood out from the pack in that it offers the unique contrast of a child battling much larger, more powerful foes than himself. Offset by the sweet and endearing scenes of his peaceful interactions with other characters, this balance of danger and action with heartwarming comedy and wholesome interactions creates a fantastic flavor unique to Ninjai: The Little Ninja.
Unfortunately, the web series is not available online these days, as it was taken down by the creators many years ago. Online rumors and chatter from fan sites and channels suggest this may be because they are gearing up to release a Ninjai: The Little Ninja the Movie. The craziest thing about this beloved web series is that it was entirely independently produced by a small team of artists and friends who call themselves the Ninjai Gang. No big studios or production companies were involved, and yet the series looks as good as anything that has ever come out, and maybe even better. Ninjai is truly a passion project, and it’s great to hear that the much-loved character will seemingly be making a comeback in a Ninjai feature film.
The Story of Ninjai: The Little Ninja
Ninjai’s story is a notable one. As a character, he is something unique among the pantheon of child protagonists in pop culture. He clearly paved the way for shows like Avatar: The Last Airbender and is refreshing with his mix of childish innocence and skillful maturity. Throughout the story, Ninjai exhibits childish optimism and mature determination, trekking through vast landscapes of mountains and valleys, forests, and rivers, in his quest to answer his questions about identity and existence. Throughout the story, he encounters many allies and enemies, and his interactions with others be they peaceful or violent are always entertaining. Accompanying him on his journey is his notable companion, Little Bird, with whom he shares many an interesting conversation, giving us more of a glimpse into the young ninja’s character. One of the most unique and beautiful aspects of Ninjai’s character is that despite his formidable abilities as a warrior, Ninjai is also vulnerable enough to ask for help. When things get tough when the chips are down, Ninjai does something you don’t often see in popular culture – he prays for help. Acknowledging his helplessness as a boy, he turns within and asks for assistance. This is a deeply spiritual and philosophical aspect of his character, providing a strong contrast to his childishness in other areas.
There are many reasons why the show was so beloved by viewers – one of those things being Ninjai’s endearing character and the tasteful contrast between his child-like nature and his very adult maturity as a master ninja. While this contrast exists, Ninjai has a certain charm to it that brings viewers back to simpler times of wholesome entertainment, reflecting their own childhoods. Ninjai’s relatable personality also represents some powerful themes; his battling of physical demons reflects one’s own battle against their inner demons, for one. Simultaneously, Ninjai was excellent escapist entertainment for anyone just looking to unwind after a long day at work. It has something for everyone in it, and as such gathered a wide, varied audience of people of all ages and from all walks of life.
Additionally, Ninjai stood out from many of its peers at the time of its release – the early 2000s – As the production moved on the animation quality improved in leaps and bounds with each episode until the production quality was second to none. Launched using the technology available at the time, Ninjai was so incredibly high-quality that you would never have known it was started as a passion project by a group of friends. Its solid mix of animation and ninja/martial arts was top-notch and as good as or better than anything else you could find at the time – and even holds up extremely well to this day! With such a stunning production, it was easy to immerse yourself in the story and lose yourself in the world of Ninjai: The Little Ninja. Now, in the early 2000s, this was no small feat – the animation techniques and technologies available at the time meant that the animators had to draw and color each frame by hand to create the series, making the resulting product that much more impressive. Add to that the fact that the Ninjai Gang is a small team, not backed by any major studios or production companies and Ninjai becomes even more miraculous! A true masterpiece, Ninjai lives on in the hearts and minds of fans worldwide to this day.
Ninjas and Samurais: They Aren’t the Same!
Ninjas and samurai have quite a lengthy history, operating in Japan for hundreds of years during a time possibly as wide as the early 1200s to the late 1800s. The two different types of warriors were the main fixtures in Japanese society and are now well-represented in modern movies and popular culture. Titles like Naruto, Mortal Kombat, Ninja Turtles, or The Last Samurai provide ample testament to this. They tend to be portrayed as one and the same, but actually, they have several differences. For example, samurai, as opposed to ninjas, belonged to higher and more ‘noble’ classes in Japanese society. Ninjas represented the lower classes and were often viewed as cheap assassins rather than honorable warriors. The way they dress is also visibly different, with ninjas wearing tight and fully covering clothing that is meant to conceal and lend them stealth. Samurais are obviously known for their intimidating armor and masks, and when not in their battle gear would wear kimonos and robes. Likewise, samurai fight differently than ninjas in that they follow the “bushido” code, which is a style of fighting that follows a set of ethical rules. On the other hand, ninjas do not follow any special code and exist mainly to get the job done however necessary. The martial art of Ninjitsu highlights the need for stealth, sneak attacks, and other forms of espionage warfare. As a result, ninjas’ skills are also quite different from samurai – samurai fight face to face in man-on-man combat, whereas ninjas are notorious for their stealthy techniques, unique secret weapons, and penchant for ambushes, infiltration, and assassination.
What is happening now with Ninjai?
As mentioned above, there have been many rumors around the topic of Ninjai: The Little Ninja making a return to fans. While it has been a while since any official updates from the Ninjai Gang, there was a teaser trailer dropped online for a Ninjai feature film that is rumored to be released sometime this year, 2022. The Ninjai official site is currently under maintenance, assumedly to gear up for a revamping ahead of the Ninjai feature film. Whilst work on the film has taken a while, it is understandable considering as Ninjai is produced solely as the passion project of a group of animators.
While it is difficult to establish when exactly the Ninjai film is expected to be released due to the lack of official updates, fan accounts online have been buzzing with activity gearing up for the release of the Ninjai feature film. So far, the online chatter and channels are predicting a mid-to-late 2022 release, so we can only hope!
As the Ninjai web series was launched, it also ended, leaving fanatic viewers in need of more. After all, we did mention that it made many viewers addicted! There are many different sources that propose varying dates of release, so it is difficult to pinpoint exactly when new material will be published. However, according to many sources, a new animated feature film called Ninjai: The Little Ninja, is expected to hit the screens in 2022. The producers seem to be many artists and friends who have been referring to themselves as “the Ninja Gang”, and although they have been working on different productions, this most likely is the largest project they have taken on.
It is difficult to establish exactly when it is expected to be released because there are no official accounts or updated profiles online. However, Ninjai fan accounts on Twitter, Pinterest, Medium have been predicting that mid to late-2022 is when we should be expecting the movie to be launched.
For more information on the upcoming movie Ninjai: The Little Ninja, you can check out movie & news sites like The Ritz Herald, Markets Herald, Film Daily, Critical Hit as well as the Madison Graph. The film is expected to hit cinemas, but as mentioned above, there is no official announcement regarding what platform the film will release on. It may end up being a streaming service, or it may be the silver screen – either way we’re very excited. Stay tuned for more information!