Among our list of highly anticipated animated projects coming soon to Netflix is Blue Eye Samurai, a new series from Michael Green and Amber Noizumi. Here’s everything we know so far about the upcoming project.
First announced in October 2020, the new project was announced with Green and Noizumi attached as the writers and showrunners. Green is best known for his work on major Hollywood movies such as Logan, Blade Runner 2049, and Green Lantern.
Jane Wu is directing the project who has previously worked on Disney’s Mulan, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Star Trek Beyond.
“Our story is a larger-than-life action-adventure that takes place 400 years ago, yet Blue Eye Samurai’s themes are of the moment and the inspiration is deeply personal. We are grateful for Netflix’s passion for this story and for their bold vision for sophisticated animated drama,” Green and Noizumi said when the project was first announced.
A first-look photo was released for the series on April 21st, 2023, alongside the news that the series will debut at the Annecy Film Festival in June 2023 alongside other Netflix animated projects like Nimona, Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget, Exploding Kittens, and Leo.
At Annecy, we’re expected to see a conversation with the creative team behind the series discussing their vision for the story.
FIRST LOOK at BLUE EYE SAMURAI animation series from Michael Green and Amber Noizumi. pic.twitter.com/LsaYZcx8pT
— What's on Netflix (@whatonnetflix) April 21, 2023
What’s Blue Eye Samurai on Netflix about?
The first description we got came just before the official announcement:
“In JAPAN in 1633 MIZU is branded as an outsider due to piercing blue eyes and sets out on a journey of revenge, coming into contact with the young noblewoman, AKEMI…”
Who will voice in Netflix’s Blue Eye Samurai?
Alongside the series first being announced, we also got the majority of the main cast for the series which includes:
- Maya Erskine (Pen15)
- George Takei (Star Trek)
- Masi Oka (Heroes)
- Randall Park (Fresh Off the Boat, Blockbuster)
- Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa (Man in the High Castle)
- Brenda Song (Dollface)
- Darren Barnet (Never Have I Ever)
What’s on Netflix can also confirm that Sir Kenneth Branagh (Murder on the Orient Express, Belfast, Death on the Nile) will also voice in the new series.
Margery Simkin and Orly Sitowitz served as casting directors on the project.
For the moment, we don’t know who each actor will play, but we have got a list of the various characters you’ll see throughout:
- Spirited and tough, MIZU is out for revenge. She is determined and has the inner focus to achieve that goal.
- An over-eager helper who talks non-stop. RINGO doesn’t see his physical disability as a deterrent – he has no hands. His ingenuity and high energy give him the drive he needs to survive. He can be exhausting, but he is endearing and funny.
- A young noblewoman, AKEMI is bound by the traditional ways of her society. When necessary she becomes the soft spoken, deferential, traditional sounding daughter her father expects her to be. With those she trusts, she can be herself: smart, succinct, and determined, speaking in a stronger lower register.
- Although not born of noble blood, TAIGEN has reached a level of success that belies his humble upbringing. Considered the best swordsman in Kyoto, he has become arrogant and when his position is challenged by an unlikely person he is determined to prevail at all costs.
- Although blind, THE SWORDMAKER misses nothing. Though sometimes cold, he is wise, resourceful, calm and measured. He cared for MIZU when no one else did.
- AKEMI’s father, he is a lord in Kyoto who has risen from humble beginnings. Not only is he imposing in body and temperament, DAICHI is a man who has fought many battles, and has the scars to prove it. Quick to react in anger, but can be softened by his daughter, although he demands and expects to be obeyed.
- The senior attendant in DAICHI’s household, SEKI is the one bright spot for AKEMI. Like a favorite uncle to her, he is calm, cunning, and particular.
- A black market middleman, SHINJIN ONO works with the person MIZU is trying to find.
- MADAME KAJIA, a woman who has managed to find autonomy over her life in a world hostile to women. Tart, unflappable, wise and unsentimental (can sometimes be charmingly persuasive). She worked her way up to this managerial role from the bottom up.
One additional note we should add is that while casting for the show, Netflix noted that all of the characters will speak English with no Asian accent.
When will Blue Eye Samurai be released on Netflix?
No release date or window has been announced thus far, although given its premiere at Annecy in mid-June 2023, we’d expect the show to drop on Netflix at some point in 2023.
In January, Michael Green posted a string of Tweets in which one of them he implied the new show will debut in November 2023.
(And YES, this is me getting you ready to watch our show RIGHT AWAY when it comes out in November…)
— Michael Green (@andmichaelgreen) January 7, 2023
We’ll keep you posted as and when we learn more about the future of Blue Eye Samurai when we get it. Until then, let us know if you’re excited about the project in the comments down below.