WARNING: This article contains spoilers for Age of the Golden Master
Ninjago: Age of the Golden Master is an ongoing live-action LEGO film featuring the LEGO Ninjago characters. The film is written, directed, filmed and edited by Scott Pincus and distributed by Bio-Builder Productions. It is the second sequel to the 2014 film Ninjago, the sequel to Rise of the Great Devourer, and the final installment in the series. The film stars returning cast members Jack Morris, Joe Teddick, OonieandCacola, Douglas Garthwaite, JTH Studios, Davy Smet, Tom McCabe and others, and introduces Lance Newman, Josh Lambright, JobbytheHong, Matt Howell, Luna Fett and Brent Miller, the original voice of Zane.
Set two years after the second film, Pythor has formed an alliance of villains and seeks to fulfill the prophecy of the Golden Master - an all-powerful being bent on razing Ninjago. The Ninja and their allies face the deadly conflict to save Ninjago from an age of destruction. Progress on the film picked up in 2016, but was slowed due to the production of Creepy Guy 4 and other projects, as well as Scott's graduation of high school and transition to college. The film draws elements from seasons three through six of the TV show.
The film began airing on July 19, 2018, with the release of Part 1. Filming began in November 2016, with the majority of it being wrapped in August 2018. Editing is currently underway. It is expected to air for the rest of 2018, and will conclude in December 2018.
Two years after the second film, Pythor has formed an alliance of villains. With their help he builds a terrible weapon capable of destroying realms, for a prophesied tyrant - the Golden Master. The Ninja and their trusted allies are thrust into a dangerous conflict, in which they uncover truths from the past and fight across Ninjago to save it from an age of destruction.
Cast members with an * next to their name switched their username following the release of the second film.
- Jack Morris voices Cole Hence, the Elemental Master and Ninja of Earth. As confirmed in March 2018, this will be Jack's last time voicing the character, having starred as Cole throughout the series.
- Matt Howell voices Kai Fellows, the Elemental Master and Ninja of Fire, and the brother of Nya. Kai was voiced by Ryan Bowman in the first two films, but he was dropped from the cast in February 2017. Matt Howell took over the role that April.
- OonieandCacola voices Jay Walker, the Elemental Master and Ninja of Lightning, who is in a relationship with Kai's sister Nya.
- Douglas Garthwaite voices Zane Julien, the Elemental Master and Ninja of Ice, as well as the first Nindroid and the son of Dr. Julien.
- JTH Studios voices Lloyd Garmadon, the Elemental Master of Energy and the Green Ninja, as well as the son of Garmadon and nephew of Sensei Wu.
- Luna Fett voices Nya Fellows, the sister of Kai and a loyal ally of the Ninja, who dons the alias of "Samurai X". Luna Fett was cast as Nya after Abby Pincus was dropped from the cast.
- Joe Teddick voices Sensei Wu, a son of the First Spinjitzu Master, brother of Garmadon, uncle of Lloyd, and teacher of the Ninja. Though he reprises the role for a third time, Joe created a slightly different voice for Wu, keeping elements of his raspy tone while making him sound more clear and young.
- Tom McCabe* voices Garmadon, a son of the First Spinjitzu Master, brother of Wu and the father of Lloyd. Having been redeemed at the end of the second film, Garmadon has become a sensei like his brother.
- Davy Smet voices Ben Delmar, Ninjago's police commissioner and the leader of the city's united police and military forces. Delmar has formed a team of troopers that work with the Ninja to protect Ninjago.
- Josh Lambright voices Dareth, a loyal ally of the Ninja who assists them in their operations. Collector1100, who voiced Dareth in the first two films, resigned from the role in January 2018, with Josh being recast in August.
- Tom McCabe* voices The Overlord, an entity of pure evil who created the Great Devourer and manipulated Garmadon. He was a major antagonist in the second film, and plays a similar role in this film.
- JTH Studios voices Captain Soto, the leader of a crew of pirates and the former captain of Destiny's Bounty. Over the years, Soto resorted to vigilantism as he terrorized the citizens of Ninjago, but after the Great Devourer's rampage he and his crew decided to live quiet lives. Soto is approached by Delmar's team to find the Tomb of the First Spinjitzu Master.
Daniel Poulter returns as Lucas, a police officer and Delmar's lieutenant. Cameron Morris returns as Anthony Reese, Ninjago's corrupt mayor. Sam Charbonneau* returns as Samuel Mercer, a politician who opposes Reese's rule. Russell Parkinson returns to cameo as Cillian Fincher, an ally of Reese. Scott Pincus returns as Simon Bowler, an inventor and ally of the Ninja. Captain Soto's crew and the original soldiers also return.
The first Elemental Master of Earth, as well as other original Elemental Masters, appear in flashback scenes. Lou Hence (Cole's father) and Curtis - construction workers that appeared in the first film's opening scene - cameo during the scene where the Golden Weapons are excavated.
- Tom McCabe* voices Pythor, the last living Anacondrai whose skin was bleached white by the Great Devourer. He was a major antagonist in the second film and serves as a major antagonist in this film.
- FireStar97Studios voices Fangtom, the two-headed leader of the Fangpyre Tribe, who served as a supporting antagonist in the first two films.
- JTH Studios voices Mezmo, the soldier of the Hypnobrai Tribe, who was an antagonist in the first two films.
- Sam Charbonneau* voices Acidicus, the general of the Venomari Tribe, who was an antagonist in the second film. He explains the legend of the Golden Master to the Ninja.
- Noah Phillips* voices Lizaru, the warrior of the Venomari Tribe, who was an antagonist in the second film.
- Noah Phillips* voices Spitta, a soldier of the Venomari Tribe, who was an antagonist in the second film.
- Jordan Winfield voices Skalidor, the general of the Constrictai Tribe and an antagonist in the second film. Jordan replaces Garnettfox, who was dropped from the role in October 2018 due to a lack of contact between her and Scott.
- Noah Phillips* voices Bytar, the warrior of the Constrictai Tribe, who was an antagonist in the second film.
Douglas Garthwaite and Scott Pincus briefly reprise the roles of Chokun and Slithraa, respectively. Fangdam, the mute brother of Fangtom, as well as Snike and Rattla, also return from the first two films - this time in non-speaking roles. Skales, Fang-Suei, Snappa and Lasha all return in flashback scenes, while the Great Devourer cameos in a flashback.
- JobbytheHong voices Master Chen, the leader of a criminal empire that worships the Anacondrai. He serves as one of the film's main antagonists. Rob O'Dwyer was cast as Chen in December 2016, but resigned in April 2018 due to obligations with other projects. Jobby was cast in the role that June.
- Josh Lambright voices Morro, the Elemental Master of Wind and Sensei Wu's first student, who escaped the Cursed Realm; he was led to believe he would be the Green Ninja. Morro serves as one of the film's main antagonists.
- Lance Newman voices General Cryptor, the leader of the Nindroids whose mind was corrupted by The Overlord. He serves as one of the film's main antagonists.
- Lance Newman voices Clouse, a master of dark arts who serves Master Chen; he has an age-old rivalry with Garmadon, whom he trained with in his youth. He serves as one of the film's main antagonists.
- Douglas Garthwaite voices Eyezor, one of Master Chen's top generals who has a distinct mohawk; he works closely with Clouse on his operations and often partakes in attacks against the Ninja.
- Lance Newman voices Soul Archer, a ghost from the Cursed Realm who escapes with Morro. He has a past with the bounty hunter Ronin.
- Douglas Garthwaite voices Wrayth, a ghost from the Cursed Realm who escapes with Morro.
- Lance Newman voices Flintlocke, a high-ranking Sky Pirate who was second-in-command under Nadakhan.
Additionally, JobbytheHong voices Kapau and Chope, two of Chen's cultists who are good friends. Lance Newman voices Ghoultar, a ghost from the Cursed Realm who escapes with Morro, and Zugu, one of Chen's top generals. Gabe Sagherian cameos as Hector/Traitor Pirate. JobbytheHong has vocal cameos as several miscellaneous characters.
Various Sky Pirates also debut, including Dogshank, Clancee, Doubloon and Monkey Wretch. Several other characters debut as well, including a Giant Stone Warrior, Krazi, the Skulkin warrior of lightning, Bansha, a ghost from the Cursed Realm, and The Mechanic, one of Chen's cultists. General Arcturus, the leader of the Anacondrai, and Nadakhan, the captain of the Sky Pirates, both debut in flashback scenes. None of these characters have voice actors.
- Lance Newman voices Ronin, a mercenary and bounty hunter who operates out of the city of Stiix. Though he's made deals with many enemies, he forms a rag-tag team with Karlof, Griffin Turner and Samuel Mercer in a bid to help the Ninja.
- Christopher Lee voices Griffin Turner, the Elemental Master of Speed and a close ally of Karlof.
- Lance Newman voices Karlof, the Elemental Master of Metal and a close ally of Griffin Turner.
- Dakota Markle voices Ford, an old war hero and a member of Delmar's team, who has supported Delmar since he started the group. Ford took Vladimir's place when he retired from his post.
- Lance Newman voices Zoltar, a soldier in the Venomari Tribe who defected and allied with Delmar's team. Zoltar knows about the curse of the Golden Master, and prompts the Ninja to look towards the Serpentine as new allies.
- Brent Miller voices Brent, a young man and a member of Delmar's team. Brent Miller voices Zane in the Ninjago TV show, and was cast in September 2016 after Scott won his voice actor contest. Brent will make various appearances throughout the film.
Additionally, Christopher Lee voices Cyrus Borg, the founder of Borg Industries who cameos in the film. JumboGauge voices Brandt, a trooper and member of Delmar's team. Various troopers allied with Delmar also debut in the film. Ryan Grier will have a vocal cameo in the film. JobbytheHong has vocal cameos as several miscellaneous characters, including a trooper named Hendricks and a curious villager. The same goes for JumboGauge, who voices a concerned villager.
These are the vehicles that have been confirmed to appear in the film at some point.
- Destiny's Bounty - A colossal aerial ship designed to fly and float in water. Once manned by Captain Soto and his crew before the Ninja took the vessel, Destiny's Bounty was shredded apart by the Great Devourer at the end of the second film. In the time since, the Bounty has been entirely rebuilt, with a far more advanced design. The vehicle was custom-built by Scott to resemble its appearance in season four and beyond. It is the Ninjas' only vehicle from the previous films confirmed to return for this installment.
- D.B. Express - Also known as the "DB X"; a large fortified vehicle built to transport weapons and allies in harsh climates or situations. It is often used by the Ninja, especially when Destiny's Bounty was not in service. In the first part of the film, the Ninja drive it to the Frozen Wasteland; at this point the new Destiny's Bounty was still being built.
- R.E.X. - A cargo ship built and flown by Ronin during his missions. He often stores it near his pawnshop in Stiix. It's equipped with several guns, two of which are underneath the cockpit, and another two are on its rotor engines.
- Roto Jet - A jet bomber with a series of laser blasters at the front of it. The Roto Jet has enough firepower to swiftly take out many ground adversaries and their vehicles. The vehicle is flown by Cole, but after he was captured the Anacondrai Cultists stole it, and Chen flew it instead. It was later shot down by R.E.X.
- Escape Car / Proto Sam-X - Also known as "Nya's car", a small all-terrain vehicle equipped with a large missile launcher. The car was used by Garmadon and Lloyd as they went into hiding, and was abandoned after their fight with the MechDragon. The Nindroids later stole the vehicle, and it was briefly taken back by Lloyd before being damaged again.
- Hovercopter - An aerial surveillance drone equipped with micro missiles and large-scale rockets, it was designed by Simon Bowler for Zane to use in the final battle.
- Ghost Taker GT - A heavily-armored blue vehicle that fires Deepstone missiles. It was designed by Simon Bowler for Jay to use in the final battle.
- Blaster Bike - A large bike coated in Deepstone armor and equipped with twin carbine blasters. It was designed by Simon Bowler for Cole to use in the final battle, though Cole allowed Kai to use it due to a "mission of his own".
- Fangpyre Truck - A large green truck built by the Fangpyre Tribe to assault Jamanakai Village in the first film. In the first part of the film, Pythor drives a truck to fulfill his errands, such as retrieving the Golden Weapons and the Nindroids. Another Fangpyre Truck is seen during the Slither Pit ceremony, and later at Bowler Airfield.
- Rattlecopter - A green jet built by the Fangpyre Tribe to battle their adversaries. A crashed Rattlecopter is seen during the Serpentine War flashback, and later during the Slither Pit ceremony. The Serpentine brought a Rattlecopter to Bowler Airfield in preparation for the final battle.
- Earth Mech - A black mech built for Cole to use. Though smaller than the other mechs, it's equipped with two golden sword blasters. The mech was destroyed during the Ninjas' battle with Misfortune's Keep.
- Fire Mech - A red mech built for Kai to use. The mech was damaged by the Great Devourer in the second film, and later received modifications from Simon Bowler. It's equipped with a fire blaster on its right arm. The mech was destroyed during the Ninjas' battle with Misfortune's Keep.
- Electro Mech - A blue mech built for Jay to use. The mech is equipped with a dual plasma cannon, and also features a set of golden blades on its back, which allow it to fly. The mech was destroyed during the Ninjas' battle with Misfortune's Keep.
- Titan Mech - A white mech built for Zane to use. The mech is equipped with two silver blades underneath its arms, as well as dual ice blasters on its shoulders. The mech was initially bisected by Misfortune's Keep, but was rebuilt, and later destroyed again during a battle with the Ghost Mech.
- Ultimate Weapon - A large, tripod-shaped machine built by Pythor's alliance of villains for the fabled Golden Master to use. The weapon is meant to use the Realm Crystal's powers to seize the Cursed Realm and merge it with Ninjago, bringing untold destruction.
- Bladecopter - A large stone-built jet designed by the Anacondrai Cultists. Loosely inspired by the Serpentine's Rattlecopters, the cultists produced numerous Bladecopters as a means of swiftly traversing Ninjago's vast jungles.
- Condrai Crusher - A stone-built vehicle with a snake-like head and spinning stone blades, also designed by the Anacondrai Cultists. The Crushers are able to quickly clear an area of debris and adversaries, cutting through anything in their paths.
- Jungle Raider - A stone-built all-terrain buggy, also designed by the Anacondrai Cultists. The original Jungle Raider set was green and meant for Lloyd, though Scott redesigned it to look like the cultists' other vehicles.
- Chen's Chair - A flying throne which often transports Master Chen throughout his territory. The chair was frequently seen as Chen patrolled the area during the second Tournament of Elements, and was later attached to the Chenosaurus when Jamanakai Village was occupied.
- Chenosaurus - A stone mech resembling a Tyrannosaurus rex, with short chainsaw arms and twin cultist blasters. The mech is often used by Chen, and is capable of holding his chair on its back.
- Anacondrai Battle Ram - A large, stone vehicle capable of transporting cultists, equipped with a giant machine gun on its roof. The battle ram was a custom vehicle by Scott, built from the remains of the Anacondrai Temple set.
- Misfortune's Keep - A vertical takeoff and landing aircraft, utilized by the Sky Pirates as their main means of transportation. The original Ninja battled Misfortune's Keep using their mechs.
- Chain Cycle - A large bike built by Wrayth following his escape from the Cursed Realm; it's equipped with two ghost blasters on either side of its hood. The bike was used by Wrayth to attack Ronin at his pawnshop.
- Nindroid MechDragon - A mechanical creature built by the Nindroids to hunt down and capture Lloyd. The dragon was seemingly destroyed using Lloyd's Golden Power, but was later reactivated for when The Overlord conquered Jamanakai Village.
- Destructoid - A tank-like vehicle with a sword and sawblade, utilized by the Nindroids. The vehicle was used to capture Garmadon, which in turn allowed Pythor to capture Lloyd.
- Hover Hunter - A small vehicle with a large sawblade on its front, and twin Nindroid blasters on either side.
The film was planned as far back as 2013, when Scott began pre-production for the series' first film. He intended to make the series a trilogy, though at the time had few ideas for the third film. At that point, Ninjago only had two seasons and the lore wasn't as expansive as it would be years later. Many of the concepts he developed were scrapped as time went on, although a select few made it to the official script. The film was officially announced on July 3, 2016. JTH Studios expressed interest in returning as Lloyd if he's expected to, and was the first person confirmed for the cast. On July 4, Jack Morris and Douglas Garthwaite, who voiced Cole and Zane in the first two films, were confirmed to return. On July 5, Bio21 was confirmed to return as Acidicus and Samuel Mercer from the second film, and Garnettfox was confirmed to return as Skalidor. The same day, Daniel Poulter was confirmed to return as Lucas and Snike. On July 6, Joe Teddick was confirmed to return as Sensei Wu. On August 6, 1P Entertainment was confirmed to return as Garmadon and Pythor. A casting call for the film officially began on August 8. On August 13, OonieandCacola was confirmed to return as Jay, and on August 22, FireStar97Studios was confirmed to return as Ben Delmar and Fangtom.
Returning/New Major RolesEdit
On September 1, Scott announced he's entering a contest for Brent Miller, who voices Zane in the Ninjago TV show, to have a role in the film. Before the contest ended, Scott garnered nearly 70 supporters, and on September 15 he was announced as one of two winners of the contest. Through October and November, Scott worked to rewrite the opening scenes of the film, feeling they were poorly written and boring, and needed to introduce the characters better.
Filming officially began on November 11. On November 28, Lance Newman was confirmed to voice Clouse, Cryptor, Karlof and Flintlocke in the film. On December 1, TheOnlyVie was confirmed to return as Lizaru, Spitta and Bytar. On December 28, YamatoGuru was cast as Morro. On December 29, Ryan Bowman was confirmed to return as Kai and Vladimir in the film. He was technically confirmed for the cast back in July, though his return wasn't officially announced until this date. On December 30, Rob O'Dwyer was cast as Master Chen. The following day, he was confirmed to be voicing The Overlord, replacing 1P Entertainment, who voiced him in the second film.
Filming continued on February 9 to shoot a snow scene for the film. On February 19, Ryan Bowman, who voiced Kai and Vladimir in the first and second films, was dropped from the film's cast after being expelled from Scott's films. On March 13, it was confirmed that the role of Vladimir would be cut from the film due to Ryan's expulsion. The film's script was completed on March 14. Filming also took place on March 18 and 19 to complete its snow scenes. On March 19, Charlie Hopkinson, a popular voice actor on YouTube, was cast in the role of Ford. The same day, the film's teaser trailer was released; it gained 1,300 views within three days of its release.
On March 22, Scott confirmed that the character of Hibiki was cut from the script during the revisions process. Hibiki was set to be Ronin's right-hand man in the film. On March 26, Lego Zebra was cast as Griffin Turner and Cyrus Borg. On March 31, JumboGauge was cast as Brandt, a trooper allied with Delmar. On April 2, Luna Fett was cast as Nya, replacing Abby Pincus in the role. On April 3, the role of Kai was officially recast, as Matt Howell was confirmed to voice the character. On April 21, Scott confirmed that 1P Entertainment was brought back to voice The Overlord, replacing Rob O'Dwyer, as Scott wanted to keep a sense of continuity with the character. On April 22, Lance Newman was confirmed to voice Zoltar, Zugu, Soul Archer and Ghoultar in the film. On July 18, JobbytheHong, a satirical toy reviewer on YouTube, was cast as Kapau and Chope. Filming continued into September, though the schedule became more strict due to Scott's time in college. The same month, Brent Miller recorded his lines for the project. Filming continued into October, at which point filming was well over halfway complete. Upon the release of the film's first TV spot, it was confirmed that Captain Soto would return for the film, and that JTH Studios would reprise the role. Filming also took place on November 21, with the official trailer being released the next day.
On January 12, 2018, Scott expressed his uncertainty over Collector1100 reprising his role as Dareth, as he hadn't contacted him in a few months. On January 25, Collector1100 resigned from the role due to a lack of interest. On February 15, Douglas Garthwaite was cast as Eyezor and Wrayth. On April 5, Scott officially sent out the lines for the film's entire cast. On April 11, Rob O'Dwyer resigned from the film's cast, due to an overwhelming number of other projects he's working on. On June 20, JobbytheHong was cast as Master Chen. On June 29, it was confirmed that the film will begin airing in July 2018. On July 10, Davyd (a.k.a. R&D), a popular Ninjago YouTuber, was officially cast as Dareth.
Editing and ReleaseEdit
On July 13, the film's release date was confirmed as July 19. On July 17, a thunderstorm shut down Scott's computer and corrupted his Final Cut Pro library, nearly wiping out Part 1 of the film. Fortunately, Scott was able to recover a backup of Part 1, though he had to recover the source files; ultimately, it suffered only minor damage. The first part of the film was released the night of July 19. Filming continued on July 30 and 31, which Scott says was for the later parts of the film. It then resumed on August 2. On August 3, Scott cast Josh Lambright in the role of Dareth, replacing Davyd after he was cast only a few weeks prior. This was done shortly after Davyd made a disrespectful video against Brent Miller.
Major filming continued on August 4, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10. Filming paused for several days, due to a number of thunderstorms hitting the area, and resumed on August 16 and 20. Major filming wrapped on August 22. Scott has confirmed filming is well over 95% complete, though several reshoots are necessary (see the "editing incidents" section). Editing for Part 2 officially began on September 8, with Scott completing the majority of a rough cut by September 10 - save for several lost scenes due to the "editing incident". Reshoots began on September 22. On September 17, Scott confirmed that Part 2 will be released in early-October, after reshoots are completed.
On September 23, Dakota Markle was cast as Ford, supplanting Charlie Hopkinson in the role; Gabe Sagherian was also confirmed to have a vocal cameo in the film. Reshoots continued on September 29 and 30. On September 29, Josh Lambright completed his lines for Dareth, and on September 30, Davy Smet completed his lines for Ben Delmar and Fangtom. On October 3, Part 2 was set for release on October 8. Reshoots continued and wrapped in New York on October 6, concluding filming for Part 2. On October 7, Cameron Morris completed his lines for the film, and the second part of the film was released on October 8. On October 10, Russell Parkinson was confirmed to return as Cillian Fincher; the character was initially set to return without a voice actor. Editing for Part 3 began the same day, with a rough cut of its scenes completed on October 11. On October 13, Garnettfox was dropped from the role of Skalidor due to a lack of contact between her and Scott. On October 18, Jordan Winfield was officially cast in the role. Editing for Part 3 is nearly complete, with Scott waiting on lines and re-recordings from several voice actors. Filming for Part 3 wrapped on October 20, after a short scene was completed. The third part of the film was released on October 28. Editing for Part 4 began on October 29, and a rough cut of the original footage was completed on October 30.
The film predominantly features music by Jay Vincent and Michael Kramer, the composers of the Ninjago TV show. Scott says that their works have a tremendous presence in the film, which was made possible by the fact that Jay and Michael have released much music in the time since the second film's completion in March 2016. The scores from seasons one to six of the TV show are heavily featured in the film. Themes for characters such as Cryptor, Chen, his cultists and Morro are introduced and heavily featured.
Music by Steve Jablonsky, Hans Zimmer, Michael Giacchino and John Ottman are also used in the film, although Scott says the film will have a much heavier focus on Jay and Michael's scores. He feels their scores were underused in the previous films, and wants to devote much more attention to them in this installment.
The film has gained a positive critical reception, with a rating of 96% based on 521 likes and 20 dislikes. With the release of Part 1, the film has garnered praise for its cinematography, voice acting, editing, story and balancing of its many characters, main villains, and plot points, with some favoring it as the series' best installment/part yet.
The first part of the film gained 1,000 views within half a day of its release, and a total of over 2,000 views within a day of its release. In comparison, Part 1 of Ninjago gained 100 views within a day of its release, while Part 1 of Rise of the Great Devourer gained around 200 views within a day of its release. The third film's opening was not only the biggest opening in the series by far, but the biggest opening for any of Scott's films. Within two days of its release, it gained over 6,100 views. In comparison, it took Part 1 of Ninjago nearly five months to reach this total, and two months for Part 1 of its sequel. A month after its release, Part 1 had gained over 14,000 views.
JobbytheHong, who voices Master Chen and various minor characters, shared the first part of the film with his subscribers, which also boosted its audience. However, it also resulted in many comments spamming "swivel here", a catchphrase on Jobby's channel. At the same time, it has brought in many new viewers and subscribers to the channel. The same was done for Part 2, only this time less people spammed the comments.
- On July 16, Scott slipped in mud and dropped the Anacondrai Temple that was to be seen in Cole's fight with Jay. The temple shattered apart and he was unable to put it back together, so he instead littered its remains across the marsh.
- Later that afternoon, one of the lens in Scott's glasses popped out, and he lost a screw that held them in. Since he was deep in the woods, and 3/4 of the way through filming the scene, Scott opted to finish filming by keeping one of his eyes closed to preserve his vision and see what was being filmed; the scene was successfully completed.
- On September 3, Scott was filming the Nindroid labyrinth chase on a fallen tree, which had a long thin crack running across it. While filming, the Garmadon minifigure slid into the crack and was lost, and Scott couldn't reach in to get it. Several hours later, he used an axe to slightly open the tree, which allowed him to stick a twig inside and pull the minifigure up enough to reclaim it. The scene was completed the next day. The shot of Garmadon falling into the crevice was actually used in the film.
- On September 4, a group of kids found the set for Jamanakai Village and wrecked it, leaving everything covered in mud, wood all over the place, and the giant "electrical barrel" pushed into the creek. Scott was initially unsure of how or when he would fix the damage, given that he was busy with college and had little time in the first place. Scott filmed many scenes since then, and later found the time to clean the set on October 28. Scott began filming on the set in November without any issues.
- Scott had filmed and completed a major scene at a reservoir that was overgrown with cattails. The location briefly appeared at the beginning of the first film and it returns in this film. On October 7, he found that all the cattails were removed and replaced with a large expanse of hay. The scene was featured in Part 2 of the film, in which Lloyd and Garmadon visited the Toxic Bogs, which the cattails were used for.
- On October 28, Scott found that the set for the Slither Pit had sustained damage over the last few months. A small tree had collapsed over part of the ravine. as it wore out over time. Scott still filmed at the location, and left much of the damage as it was. However, he wound up refilming the scene due to the original footage being lost, and cleared it out again next October (this time removing the small tree).
- On July 3, a severe thunderstorm hit the area where the film is shot. Heavy winds and rain knocked over many trees. A giant tree, which had partly toppled due to Hurricane Sandy years earlier, collapsed. It fell in front of Jamanakai's entrance (where the Ninjas' tree base used to be), smothering it with dense foliage and branches. Scott spent several days cutting through the dense foliage.
- On August 2, while carrying a large big full of props down a steep hill, Scott slipped and the bin hit the ground - though its contents didn't spill. However, many of the props inside were broken in the process, so he had to spend the next hour rebuilding many of them. Despite all, filming was completed as planned.
- On August 15, Scott found that a recent thunderstorm further knocked down the tree that blocked the entrance of the woods in early-July. He cut down the new foliage obscuring the entrance.
- On August 22, Scott found that a large tree on a hill near Jamanakai Village's set was very rotten and partially uprooted, and bound to fall at some point. Scott knew that when the tree falls, it would cause severe damage to the set for Jamanakai, which he deemed "inevitable".
- On September 29, prior to doing reshoots, Scott found that the tree had collapsed in the last week. Though it didn't land in the creek, it instead crashed right next to it and leaned against a smaller tree - changing the appearance of the area. All of Jamanakai's scenes were completed only days before the collapse.
- On July 17, a thunderstorm shut down Scott's computer and corrupted his Final Cut Pro library, nearly wiping out Part 1 of the film. Fortunately, Scott was able to recover a backup of Part 1, though he had to recover the source files first; ultimately, it suffered only minor damage. The first part of the film was released the night of July 19.
- On August 23, Scott found that at least four significant scenes (and parts of two scenes) from the film were lost after he deleted an old Final Cut Pro library. The original footage for these scenes was unknowingly stored in the library, and furthermore, Scott hadn't backed up the footage either. Most of these scenes are in the second part of the film, except two of them; reshoots commenced on September 22 and wrapped on October 6.
- These scenes included Garmadon telling Lloyd they had to stay hidden, Delmar's team finding Soto, the Sky Pirates flashback, and the Ninja and Ronin's crew discussing their plan of action. Most of of Possessed Lloyd's fight with the Ninja were also refilmed, though the beginning and end of the scene was intact as Scott coincidentally kept it on a memory card. Two scenes in Part 3 - Pythor confronting the fake Anacondrai, and the Slither Pit ceremony - also had to be reshot.
- Unlike other LordStarscream100 films, each subsequent part of the film got shorter. Part 1 was 41 minutes, Part 2 was 35 minutes, and Part 3 was 27 minutes. Scott confirmed that Part 4 will be shorter than Part 3.
- In the first two films, Destiny's Bounty was flown using fishing wire for many scenes. Due to its increased size in this film, Scott opted not to use fishing wire, believing it was too heavy by that point.
- Several original LordStarscream100 cast members cameo in the film, including Gabe Sagherian, Dakota Markle, Jordan Winfield and Russell Parkinson. Ryan Grier will also make a cameo in the film.
- Daniel Poulter was set to return as Snike, and even recorded a line for him, but it was cut due to its poor quality. Scott instead had Slithraa say the line, and returned to voice him.
- Though many of the film's villains never interacted in the TV show, Scott used Pythor's recurring role throughout the series to bring them together, as Pythor has interacted with The Overlord, Cryptor and Chen.
- Josh Lambright based his voice for Dareth off the TV show character, and Collector1100's voice from the first two films.
- The oldest scene for the film was shot back in November 2016; it was the scene where Morro meets with the Sky Pirates in the ice cavern.
- The film experienced various issues behind the scenes, including the set for Jamanakai Village being damaged with fallen trees, and several scenes being lost and refilmed.
- Gabe Sagherian cameos in the film as the "Traitor Pirate". He previously cameoed in the second film via archival audio from Bread's Crumbs.
- Unlike the previous films, Scott added many more sound effects in, particularly for the vehicles.
- Davyd, a popular YouTuber who posts Ninjago news, was cast as Dareth in July 2018 after Collector1100 resigned from the role that January. In August, Davyd released a distasteful video that aimlessly criticized Brent Miller, who happens to voice act in the film. Due to this, and his lack of interest in the project, Scott dropped him from the cast and recast him with Josh Lambright. Davyd was never informed of this, and never asked Scott about it either.
- The film began airing on July 19, 2018 - continuing a trend set by the previous films, as the first film began airing in July 2014 and the second in July 2015. Scott says this trend is actually coincidental. In addition, the first part of the film aired the same day that "Green Destiny" did. This was the 94th episode and the finale of season nine.
- Collector1100 was set to return as Dareth in this film, but in January 2018, he resigned from the cast due to a lack of interest.
- In casting the film's new main villains - Chen, Morro, Clouse and Cryptor, Scott looked to recreate their voices from the TV show. Many people auditioned for the roles, with YamatoGuru being cast as Morro and Lance Newman being cast as Clouse and Cryptor. JobbytheHong was later cast as Master Chen for his impersonation of the character.
- Various actors auditioned for Master Chen after Rob O'Dwyer's resigned from the role, including Sam Charbonneau and YamatoGuru, before JobbytheHong was cast in the role. Scott didn't expect Jobby to take an interest in the character, but was thrilled when he did and cast him after hearing his audition. He received praise for his impersonation of Chen.
- Joe Teddick, also known as Ackar Productions, returns to voice Sensei Wu. However, his voice sounds slightly different in the film. Joe kept elements of Wu's raspy voice, but made him sound younger and more clear. All in all, he maintained Wu's wise tone. Scott says that Wu's new voice is "somewhat different, but fits the character perfectly".
- Lance Newman voices General Cryptor in the film. In the TV show, Richard Newman provided Cryptor's voice. The actors are not related, and their last names being the same is a coincidence. However, Lance's impression of the character is strikingly similar to the original voice.
- Like the previous two films, Age of the Golden Master will be released on YouTube in separate parts.
- Scott been preparing for the film since 2014, when he first began collecting sets for Rebooted.
- Due to personal changes in his life, this will be Jack Morris's last time in which he voices Cole Hence, the series' main protagonist.
- As shown in the film's trailers, the Ninja wear four different robes in the film. They first appear with the Destiny (season six) robes in the flashback, and are briefly seen with their Elemental Robes during a flashback to the second film. They also wear their Tournament robes during the Tournament of Elements, after which they take on their Deepstone robes.
- Lloyd keeps his original head mold in the film, which appeared in the sets for season one. From the sets for season three to seven, Lloyd gained a new head mold that bears little resemblance to his appearance in the TV show. Scott kept the original head mold as he didn't want to create such a big and unnecessary change.
- The film is set to have over forty characters with different voices - exceeding the voice cast of the second film, which had around thirty-six voiced characters.
- ToaGresh300, Ryan Bowman and Collector1100, who appeared in the first two films, as well as Abby Pincus and Garnettfox, who appeared in the second film, will not return for this film. Ryan, Collector1100 and Garnett were initially confirmed to return, but were later dropped from the cast. Daniel Poulter, Noah La Vie and 1P Entertainment, who debuted in the second film, return for this installment.
- With the release of this film, Jack Morris, Joe Teddick, Douglas Garthwaite, OonieandCacola, JTH Studios, Davy Smet, Sam Charbonneau and Cameron Morris will have appeared in all three films of the series.
- While fixing the Jamanakai Village set in late-October 2017, Scott recovered several K'NEX pieces from the electric tower in Rise of the Great Devourer - two years after filming it in October 2015. He found part of the tower's platform and the red gear that held the chain up at the top of the tower.
- Vladimir Dubrovky, the Russian soldier seen in the first two films, will not return for this film due to Ryan Bowman's expulsion. However, the soldiers that he led in the previous installments will return, this time under the command of Ben Delmar.
- 1tjmac12, who voiced Garmadon, The Overlord and Pythor in the previous film, reprises the roles for this film. In September 2017, he changed his username to 1P Entertainment, and will thus be credited as such.
- The Garmadon minifigure used in the film was almost lost when Scott dropped it through a thin crevice in a fallen tree. He managed to reclaim it several hours later. This almost marked the first time where a minifigure was lost in a Ninjago film's production.
- Jack Morris, Joe Teddick, OonieandCacola, Douglas Garthwaite and JTH Studios, who voice Cole, Sensei Wu, Jay, Zane and Lloyd, respectively, have appeared in all three of the series' installments. Originally, Cole and Lloyd had different voice actors before the first film was released, but the roles were recast for the project before filming began.
- GreshLord and CharCharStudios101 voiced Zane and Kai, respectively, in the first two parts of Ninjago, but the roles were later recast, with Westificationful voicing Zane and Ryan Bowman voicing Kai. Ryan was set to voice Kai in the third film, but was dropped from the cast and replaced with Matt Howell.
- The character of Hibiki was originally set to be in the film. Hibiki was a character from the Ninjago: Shadow of Ronin video game, which was confirmed to be non-canon to the main Ninjago storyline. Despite this, Scott still chose to adapt the character and depict him as Ronin's right-hand man, but ultimately cut him from the script due to his lack of purpose in the story.
- Lance Newman, who voices major characters Clouse and Cryptor in the film, recommended Rob O'Dwyer to Scott. Rob would be cast as Master Chen, though he later resigned from the role in April 2018 due to obligations with other projects. Lance also recommended YamatoGuru to Scott, and in turn he would be cast as Morro.
- Sensei Wu is still called Sensei Wu throughout the film. For cultural reasons, in the TV show the character was referred to as "Master Wu" starting with "Day of the Departed". Scott doesn't find the title offensive or stereotypical, and thus kept him as "Sensei Wu".
- Scott began building The Overlord's Ultimate Weapon back in April 2016, and over the next year or so he gradually modified it by adding new parts and small details.
- Lou Hence, the father of Cole, and Curtis, both appear during the film's opening flashback where the Golden Weapons are excavated. The two last appeared during the opening flashback of Ninjago. Though their voice actors Sam Charbonneau and Douglas Garthwaite appear in the film, they do not reprise their roles.
- Simon Bowler returns in this film in a slightly larger role, having previously cameoed in the first two films. Bowler also served as a character in Scott's BIONICLE Universe series. In this film, he's revealed to be the son of inventor Cyrus Borg.
- NOTE: This was confirmed outside of the film; in the film, Bowler quotes his father as saying "the only limit to our potential is that which we don't dream, which was spoken by Borg in episode 26, "The Surge".
- In the TV show, the Nindroids were randomly built by The Overlord to fulfill his plans. In the film, Cryptor and the Nindroids are built by Simon Bowler, the son of Cyrus Borg, as a means of keeping peace in Ninjago - until Cryptor's mind is corrupted by The Overlord.
- Nadakhan cameos during the flashback with the Sky Pirates. In addition, a Sky Pirate resembling Nya can be briefly seen during the flashback; this is confirmed to be Dilara, Nadakhan's love interest.
- The flashback with the Sky Pirates was filmed at Point Lookout Beach in New York. After losing the footage from the original scene, Scott had to wait several weeks before he could refilm it out-of-state, as he wanted it to take place on a beach.
- To film the Great Devourer's cameo, Scott had cleansed and rebuilt the Great Devourer's head, which was messy and heavily damaged after the creature was destroyed.
- This is the first film where Zane is shown using his ice powers. He uses them on the Ghost Dragon, and later on a Nindroid attacking Brent. It is also the first film where Jay is "truly shown" using his lightning powers. In the second film, he created a burst of sparks to reactivate the tower's chain pulley.
- Though he doesn't appear in the film, Vladmir/the Russian soldier is mentioned by Captain Soto and Delmar. It's stated that he retired from his post to be with his family, with Ford taking his place.
- In the film, the Golden Master has gold hands and a tattered black cape. In the TV show, he has black hands and no cape.
- The Slither Pit ceremony with Anthony Reese was one of Scott's earlier ideas for the series, and one of his original ideas for the third film that made it into the final product. He had the idea as far back as 2014.
- Up until the scene was shot, Scott planned for Lizaru to kill Reese, but decided it would be more interesting and less anti-climactic to keep him alive. Originally, Fincher was set to fight against Skalidor, but this was cut to better the pacing.
- Cillian Fincher dies in the film, making him the longest-running character to meet their fate. He first appeared in Part 2 of Ninjago, in which he and Dareth were captured by Soto's crew.
- While in the Slither Pit, Cole has a brief vision of Skales with a sword running through his stomach - a reference to his fate in the first film.
- Simon Bowler introduces the Ninja to their new vehicles, something he previously did in the first film.
Season 3: RebootedEdit
- Pythor helps The Overlord recuperate via a power station. This is based off their first scene together in episode 29, "Blackout", in which Pythor awakens the Digital Overlord. Parts of the film's dialogue are also derived from the episode's dialogue.
- The Ninja are forced to look to the Serpentine for information on the prophecy of the Golden Master, which occurs in episode 32, "The Curse of the Golden Master". Much of Acidicus' monologue to the Ninja is taken from that episode as well.
- The Overlord's Ultimate Weapon is loosely based off its appearance in episode 34, "The Titanium Ninja". It also bears semblance to The Preeminent, the physical manifestation of the Cursed Realm from season five.
- Many of Lloyd and Garmadon's scenes in Part 2 are based off their scenes in Season 3: Rebooted, such as the car chase with the MechDragon, Garmadon teaching Lloyd about balance, and the journey through Hiroshi's Labyrinth. Their first scene in Part 3 resembles the Nindroid labyrinth chase, and Lloyd's subsequent capture by Pythor.
- The Golden Master's first lines to the Ninja are derived from some of his dialogue in season three.
Season 4: Tournament of ElementsEdit
- Parts of Master Chen's dialogue when speaking to Kai are taken from their conversation in episode 41, "The Forgotten Element". Unlike in the episode, Kai ultimately refuses to ally with Chen.
- The Serpentine War flashback is partly based off said scene from episode 40, "Spellbound"; much of Garmadon's dialogue in the film is derived from that scene.
- Captain Soto explains that Clouse reunited the Sky Pirates after they were marooned across the Sixteen Realms. In "The Dark Island Trilogy", Clouse unites and takes command of the Sky Pirates.
- Several original Elemental Masters are seen during the Serpentine War flashback - as confirmed by Scott, they were the masters of earth, electricity, gravity, nature and shadow. Ray and Maya, the masters of fire and water, also appeared as Chen was exiled. This was a reference to the TV show, in which Chen had some kind of connection to their backstory.
- Chen manipulated Cole's grandfather to betray the other Elemental Masters. This concept was hinted at in the TV show, but never explored.
- Kapau and Chope use a transformation spell from Clouse's spellbook to become Anacondrai. In the TV show, this process was more complicated, but serves as a reference nonetheless.
- The Ninja form an alliance with the Serpentine. This also occurred in episode 44, "The Corridor of Elders", when the Ninja allied with the Serpentine and Ninjago's citizens to fight Chen's army.
Season 5: PossessionEdit
- Ronin tells Clouse that "he reunited the Sky Pirates". In The Dark Island Trilogy, a series of books set between Day of the Departed and Hands of Time, Clouse takes command of the Sky Pirates since Nadakhan is never freed.
- The scene where Clouse and Soul Archer confront Ronin in his pawnshop is partly based off a scene in episode 47, "Stiix and Stones", where Morro and Soul Archer do the same thing. In that episode they seek the Scroll of Airjitzu, while in the film Clouse seeks the Book of Spells.
- The scene where Lloyd meets Morro, and the scene where Possessed Lloyd fights the Ninja, are partly based off episode 45, "Winds of Change".
- In the TV show, Morro escaped the Cursed Realm when a portal was opened to banish Garmadon there. In the film, it's said that the explosion that killed the Great Devourer briefly tore open a rift between realms, allowing Morro and other ghosts (Wrayth, Soul Archer, Bansha, Ghoultar) to escape.
- The flashback to Morro's past is partly based off said scene from episode 46, "Ghost Story".
- In the TV show, water and Deepstone were used to vanquish ghosts. In the film, Ronin uses Deepstone bullets to take out several ghosts, furthering this concept.
- Wu's dialogue with Morro aboard Destiny's Bounty is taken from his dialogue in episode 54, "Curseworld, Part II", just before Morro dies. However, in the film Morro flies off instead of meeting his end.
- Delmar's crew fighting Morro and the Sky Pirates at the tomb pays homage to the Ninja fighting Morro at the tomb in episode 52, "Grave Danger"; in both instances, they're seeking the Realm Crystal.
Season 6: SkyboundEdit
- Nadakhan, the Sky Pirates' lost captain, is trapped in a teapot, which also happened in the show. In the film, the teapot is hidden in a lost chest near the Tomb of the First Spinjitzu Master, as it was left there by Captain Soto's father.