Top Ninja Warriors Compete On 3-Hour NBC Special USA VS. THE WORLD, 6/4
NBC will present its annual high-stakes international competition "American Ninja Warrior: USA VS. THE WORLD" on Sunday, June 4 at 8-11 p.m. ET/PT. Three separate teams of six from North America, Europe and Latin America will compete in Las Vegas on the first three stages of Mt. Midoriyama, the famed four-stage finals course featured in "American Ninja Warrior." Matt Iseman and Akbar Gbajabiamila are set to host and Kristine Leahy will co-host.
The audience will be in for a surprise as one of the ninjas makes history.
Team USA features several members hoping to make a big impression, including veteran competitor Brian Arnold and six-time repeat competitor Drew Drechsel, both of whom have nearly made it stage four in Las Vegas in years past.
Also joining the team this season will be Daniel Gil and Los Angeles stuntwoman Jessie Graff, who wowed audiences last September with her stunning appearance in the Las Vegas finals. Rounding out Team USA are Josh Levin and Jake Murray.
Team Europe features several all-stars, including returning ninjas Stefano Ghisolfi (Italy), Alexander Mars (Sweden), Sean McColl (France) and Tim Shieff (England). McColl and Ghisolfi are world-class rock climbers and Shieff is a world champion free runner and the top performer in the U.K.'s version of "Ninja Warrior," while Mars is a top finisher in the Swedish version. Two new team members include England's Owen McKenzie and Denmark's Bjarke Tonnesen.
For the first time, this season's "USA vs. the World" will feature competitors from Latin America. The intrepid ninjas include Santiago de Alba (Mexico), Wid Eriksen (Mexico), Karl Fow (Venezuela), Diego Gonzalez (Mexico), Danee Marmolejo (Mexico) and David Saikin (Argentina). De Alba and Gonzalez are both highly decorated Mexican climbing champions, Eriksen is an acrobat by trade, Fow and Marmolejo are both world renown freerunners and stuntmen, and Saikin is an Argentinean climbing champion.
Contestants will tackle "American Ninja Warrior's" punishing Las Vegas finals course in a head-to-head format that pits members from each team against one another.
The series is executive produced by A. Smith & Co. Productions' founders Arthur Smith and Kent Weed ("Hell's Kitchen," "Spartan: Ultimate Team Challenge," "Unsung,"), along with Brian Richardson and Anthony Storm.