PopLurker Interviews: Actor Colin Bass of Power Rangers: First Ninja

It’s here, ladies and gentlemen! The Power Rangers: First Ninja fan film has landed. Based on the Power Rangers: Ninja Storm season and written/acted by hardcore fan Colin Bass, First Ninja is an exciting and respectful take on the Ninja Storm season, which is sometimes overlooked.

I got together with Colin for a PopLurker Exclusive interview to talk about his film, Power Rangers, and his relationship with fandom!

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Hi Colin! Thank you so much for giving PopLurker this interview. First off, I have to tell you that your fan film, Power Rangers: First Ninja looks great. Would you share a little bit about your personal history with the Power Rangers franchise and what inspired you to write/act in this fan film? 

The pleasure is all mine! Thank you for the kind words, I really appreciate it. And yeah, I’ll try to keep it brief. haha. So I was a 90’s kid, I loved Mighty Morphin’, but as I got older I would just sort of check in on the seasons because I loved the super hero aspect of it all. Then in 8th grade I watched the premiere of Ninja Storm and it reignited my love for Power Rangers! The rest is history.

 
You’re no stranger to the fan film acting world. I believe I saw someone online recently say that you’re a famous ‘geek actor’. How do you feel being put into this niche? Are you embracing it, or would you rather be seen in a more broad respect?
“Geek Actor”?! I like it! (laughing). I’ve been trying to distance myself from cosplay so I will gladly take Geek Actor. But I am totally down to try non-geek roles. There just haven’t been any that have crossed my path.
You’re not only an actor in the Power Rangers: First Ninja fan film, but you wrote it. What inspired the ‘Elemental’ storyline, and how did you know that this was the season of Power Rangers you wanted to tap into?
 
Well, I really wanted to lead up to the spandex and morphing, not start with it. My good friend @TheBlerdVision of Unworthy Productions did an amazing fan film called “Power Rangers: Unworthy” which really inspired me. But six fully suited rangers in the first episode sounded expensive and time consuming! And I was just way too eager to get started. So then I thought about the Wind Ninja Academy and how I have always loved their training suits. Then I realized it was never fully explained how the school was started or why these ninjas can control elements. And I love telling untold stories.
 
What was casting and filming the short film like? How aware /familiar with Power Rangers and the acting style did you want everyone to be? 
 
Funny story actually. I went up to Danny (our yellow Earth Ranger) at Power Morphicon and pitched him the idea as a complete stranger. I had literally just thought of it during the fan film panel we were at. Luckily for me, Danny is the nicest dude ever so he was like, “That sounds awesome! Keep me updated!” So I kept sending him ideas to see if he liked them. Next thing I knew, I was casting our Thunder Ninjas! You know, I just realized this is kind of similar to my character inviting his character to join his school!
 
Power Rangers has a very impassioned fan base. As of this writing, your fan film is nearing 8,000 views and it’s only been live for a day. How has the response been so far? Were you nervous unleashing it into the wild?
 
Oh man, the Power Rangers Fan Base is one of the main reasons WHY I wanted to make this series. They were so welcoming and kind to me at Power Morphicon. I’ll never forget being in a room full of rangers and pitching my idea to them to see what they thought. They were stoked on my premise and even offered to help. It was an amazing moment for me. I texted Sean (my director/editor/best friend) an essay worth of texts explaining my idea and how incredible these fans are.
But that being said, I was/am super nervous. We’ve tried different genres other than DC before and have had a few flops. Sean and I are so happy about the reaction to the new series. And we love how all of the ranger fans are picking up all of my Easter Eggs. I swear I read every Power Rangers season Wikipedia page to brush up. (laughing)
 
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What is your vision for this story line? How much content do you have in the pipeline?
 
I want to build a world strong enough to lead into the Ninja Storm season. Obviously I can’t have a school with a hundred ninjas training on a mountain, but I can put that idea in Jackson’s head. I can explain why the Thunder Ninjas started their own school. I can tell people why there was never a fire elemental. Things like that. Explaining the unexplained and telling the untold story.
Three parts so far! Earth, then Air, and finally, Water.
 
Robot collectors want to know…will we be seeing a Megazord?
 
Haha, I wish. But I don’t think we can do that properly. Maybe Jackson will hint at needing a giant hawk to fly around.
 
What are your biggest fandoms? Do you collect anything or geek out for any particular pieces of pop culture?
 
I’m a huge DC fan. Lots of Flash memorabilia! But I do have a tradition where I buy
myself a figure or a collectible of any character that I play in a video. When I’m an old man, I think it’ll be cool to look back on all of the characters I’ve played and videos I’ve written. Maybe even give the collectibles to my kids and show them the videos.
 
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Where can PopLurker readers find you online? Are there any other projects in the pipeline that you wish to discuss?
I’m most active on my Instagram! @colintheblur. But you can find all of the “Power Rangers: First Ninja” goodies on the Crimson Vision Studios YouTube Channel.
I think Sean and I are just going to focus on juggling Power Rangers: First Ninja and Reverse Flash: Origins for right now! But I’m always excited for a new project and a new challenge. Power Rangers has been something I’ve wanted to do since I first started fan films. So my bucket list just got a big morphinominal check mark.
Thanks so much for this interview!
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