Netflix's Blue Eye Samurai Poster

‘Blue Eye Samurai’ Release Date, Trailer, Cast, Plot, and More

If your Netflix queue is starting to seem stale, fear not; an exciting new animated series featuring an intriguing blue-eyed Samurai is about to slice its way onto your screen. This highly-anticipated series is a period drama, packing a powerful punch of revenge, artistry, and personal journeys. The series, aptly titled Blue Eye Samurai, is set to premiere this November. The show is a creative collaboration between husband and wife duo Amber Noizumi and Michael Green. 

Recommended Videos

Michael Green, an American writer and producer, is no stranger to the inner workings of Hollywood productions. He has written or co-authored several feature film screenplays, including LoganBlade Runner 2049Alien: Covenant, and the Hercule Poirot film series, directed by Kenneth Branagh. Green was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for his work on Logan, which he co-wrote with James Mangold and Scott Frank.

According to Netflix’s Tudum, Green explained how the creators of Blue Eye Samurai wanted their work to appeal to a wide variety of audiences. He said:

“We want people to sink into it and be taken by the story and the level of artistry and forget they’re watching animation. We would love this to cross over into every interest — that if you like The Witcher, if you like animation, if you like Game of Thrones, if you like The Crown, if you like historical drama, if you like Shakespeare in Love, if you like Tarantino movies, there’s something in Blue Eye Samurai for you.”

Unveiling the Blue Eye Samurai and its Revenge-Fueled Plot 

Blue Eye Samurai introduces us to a unique protagonist, Mizu—a mixed-race master swordswoman driven by a thirst for vengeance. Mizu’s tale is one of personal battles, societal struggles, and the pursuit of justice in the face of adversity. The series is an animated wonder blending Japanese history with a modern narrative, creating an ambiance reminiscent of Tarantino movies and historical dramas like The Witcher and Game of Thrones

The events of Blue Eye Samurai take place during the Edo period when Japan was virtually cut off from the rest of the world for most of the 17th century. Mizu, with her blue eyes, is looked down upon by society. In her quest for vengeance, Mizu sets her sights on the four white men who were in Japan when she was born, one of whom she believes to be her biological father. 

Because she is a woman in a culture where vengeance is traditionally a man’s role, Mizu faces many obstacles. Therefore, she must complete her mission while hiding her true identity and striking blue eyes. She is joined on her journey by a motley crew of characters from many walks of life, whose varied backgrounds and experiences add depth to the story. 

What inspired the creation of Blue Eye Samurai?

Noizumi and Green, the brains behind Blue Eye Samurai, told Tudum that they got the concept for the series when their child was born with blue eyes. The half-Japanese Noizumi opened up to the official Netflix site about her thoughts, saying,

“Why am I so excited that my daughter has blue eyes? What’s the big deal about that? And why am I so excited that I have a baby who looks more white?” 

“Back in the Edo period, starting in 17th-century Japan, it would’ve been illegal to be white. Nobody would’ve wanted to look white like that.” Noizumi went on to describe their early creative chats, which would eventually span 15 years, and how, at some time during those early discussions, “We said something like, ‘She’s like a little blue-eyed samurai. I wrote that down, knowing it was a good title,” she added. 

Mizu in 'Blue Eye Samurai'
(Netflix)

In addition to Noizumi and Green, the film’s other key creatives were supervising director and producer Jane Wu (Mulan, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings), executive producer Erwin Stoff, and animation studio Blue Spirit. 

Jane Wu, like Noizumi, had a personal connection to Mizu; like Mizu, Wu recognized the limited options available to women in the early Edo era and thus understood Mizu’s decision to disguise herself as a man. Wu revealed that describing Mizu is similar to describing herself since Wu, like Mizu, had to go through a process of coming to terms with who she was. Wu said

“Starting in this industry, I was in a very male-dominant industry, and I noticed that if I put in my portfolio with my name on it, I generally wouldn’t get the job because I was female. Often enough, my portfolio wasn’t looked at because I was female, so then I just started using my initials so you couldn’t tell whether I was male or female, and you would have to judge me by the work. That’s kind of what Mizu went through to complete her revenge, and I guess that’s what I’m doing — completing my revenge.”

The Star-Studded Voice Cast 

The anime features an impressive voice cast, with Maya Erskine providing the voice of the main character, Mizu. Maya Erskine has played notable characters, including Mikki in Betas and Maggie in Man Seeking Woman. From 2019 through 2021, she and Anna Konkle co-starred, co-created, and co-executive-produced the Hulu original comedy series PEN15 as fictional versions of their 13-year-old selves. 

Other notable names include George Takei, best known for his role as Hikaru Sulu in Star Trek: The Original Series, and Masi Oka, best known for his roles as Hiro Nakamura on NBC’s Heroes and Doctor Max Bergman on CBS’ Hawaii Five-0. Additionally, expect to see Randall Park, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, and Darren Barnet. Brenda Song, best known for her role as London Tipton on the Disney Channel TV’s sitcoms Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Suite Life on Deck, will also appear. 

When selecting the voice actors for their project, Noizumi and Green emphasized representation. “We weren’t looking for people who had a ton of voice-over work experience. I think most of them did, but we wanted to make sure that everybody was actually Asian. We didn’t want to cast anybody who wasn’t.”

Should we call Blue Eye Samurai an Anime? 

While set in Japan and featuring a samurai’s tale, Blue Eye Samurai is not an anime. The series adopts a unique aesthetic, a 2D/3D hybrid that uses technology to achieve a handcrafted feel. Despite using 3D, the creators ensured it retained a 2D appearance, distinguishing it from traditional anime styles. The two creators also lauded Jane Wu for guiding them through the process of creating the Blue Eye Samurai universe. 

Teaser Trailer 

The official teaser trailer gives a glimpse into the unyielding spirit of Mizu and her relentless pursuit of revenge. The action-packed sequences promise an intense and visually stunning series that lies ahead. 

The Blue Eye Samurai Release Date 

Mark your calendars, as Blue Eye Samurai is set to premiere on November 3 on Netflix. Prepare yourself for a captivating journey through 17th-century Japan, where revenge is an art and a blue-eyed samurai stands tall against the odds.

(featured image: Netflix)


The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Author
Image of Faith Katunga
Faith Katunga
Faith is a freelance journalist with an insatiable curiosity for all aspects of current events, from the global economy and fashion to pop culture and travel. She watches an absurd number of cat videos on Instagram when not reading or writing about what is going on in the world. Faith has written for several publications, including We Got This Covered, Italy Magazine, TheTravel, etc., and holds a master's degree in Fashion Culture and Management.