Special 'American Ninja Warrior: USA Vs. Japan' to Air Monday, January 13 on NBC

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

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January 6th, 2014

American Ninja Warrior obstacle course

via press release:


First-Ever International Competition Features Head-to-Head Battles Between Top Players from Both Countries

UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. — Jan. 6, 2014 — NBC’s heart-racing obstacle course competition show “American Ninja Warrior” will present the first ever international competition in a two-hour network special “American Ninja Warrior: USA vs Japan,” airing Monday, Jan. 13 (8-10 p.m. ET/PT).

Five top athletes from “American Ninja Warrior” will do battle against five of the most accomplished competitors from “Sasuke,” the program that inspired “American Ninja Warrior” and has run for 28 seasons in Japan. Matt Iseman and Akbar Gbaja Biamila will host and Jenn Brown will co-host.

Representing Team USA are competitors Brian Arnold, Paul Kasemir, James McGrath, Travis Rosen and Brent Steffensen. Arnold wowed audiences in the season finale of “American Ninja Warrior” in September with his breathtaking runs on the punishing finals course, “Mt. Midoriyama.” Arnold very nearly completed the course in Las Vegas before a heart-breaking fall on stage three.

Team Japan will be represented by Kazuma Asa, Hitoshi Kanno, Ryo Matachi, Shingo Yamamoto and two-time “Sasuke” grand champion Yuji Urushihara. These impressive athletes have traveled across the Pacific Ocean to take on their fellow American ninjas.

Contestants will tackle all four stages of the Las Vegas finals course in a new head-to-head format that pits members from each team against one another. In the end, the championship trophy and international bragging rights will go to the victors in this inaugural USA vs. Japan contest.

“American Ninja Warrior” is executive-produced by A. Smith & Co. Productions’ founders Arthur Smith and Kent Weed (“Hell’s Kitchen,” “I Survived a Japanese Game Show,” “Pros vs. Joes”).

  • fakeem

    So someone has actually finished the course. I think ANW needs to show that episode, just to prove it can be done.

    Second, if it weren’t for this site, I would never have known about this special episode. They should have aired promos during Wild Card Saturday.

  • Jesus

    Yes, people have finished the Japanese course, but it was easier.

  • RFBB

    No women, no interest…..

  • NinjaNTime

    Easier my butt as I have competed on that coarse and it is anything but easy. Furthermore you clearly don’t follow Ninja Warrior to much to make such comments. The American Ninja Warrior coarse is the same coarse as Sasuke. What would be the point otherwise in defeating a coarse which hasn’t been beaten by any American as of yet.

    And of which only 3 have ever beaten in it’s entire history. Japan’s developer and founder of Ninja Warrior overseas all the courses built throughout the world. It is updated every few years if and when someone defeats it. The last of which he changed the coarse which progressively gets harder.

    So to answer your question yes, it is harder then the previous coarse. There wouldn’t have ever been a Ninja Warrior without Sasuke paving the way. So we can thank the Japanese for that of which I am grateful.
    To address the last comment there was a female version.

    It was called Kunoichi which had 7 tournaments I think. Not as long running as Sasuke but still a real treat to watch. Ayako Miyake won it three times I think. I think only three have completed the women’s coarse as well. I really miss watching that one.

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