Looking to construct the same anarchic style and meta nudging humour displayed by both The Lego Movie (2014) and this years The Lego Batman Movie, The Lego Ninjago Movie will focus on young Lloyd (Dave Franco), who is part of a team of teenage ninjas. However, their main villain, Lord Garmadon (Justin Theroux), just so happens to be his father.
Adapted from the toy line and TV series, Lego Ninjago aims to blend martial arts with kaiju movies, robots and more science fiction subjects. Garmadon, for example is a four-armed, black-helmeted nasty with designs on destroying everyone in his way.
Lloyd, who has confidence issues and would seem to be unremarkable, finds his groove when he joins up with the team, which includes Kai (Michael Pena), robot Zane (Zach Woods), Cole (Fred Armison), Jay (Kumail Nanjiani) and Nya (Abbi Jacobson). And they have a great teacher in Wu, even if it is not always the perfect student-teacher relationship... "It sometimes takes Lloyd a little while to grasp the lessons that Master Wu is trying to instill within him," Franco tells USA Today.
Having Chan involved also brought another resource – his stunt team filmed martial arts sequences for the animators to draw from. And the movie promises to keep up the jokey, occasionally bizarre tone of both previous Lego outings. "Ninjago is one of the most insane places in the universe," Theroux tells the paper. "So much of it makes no sense. It feels like it came out of the mind of a kid rather than out of the minds of some people sitting in a writers' room."
The Lego Ninjago Movie will arrive in UK cinemas on 13 October.