Esquire Network Nabs Japan’s 'Ninja Warrior'

Ninja Warrior, the Japanese obstacle course format that premiered on the late G4 a decade ago, is coming back on Esquire Network. Ironing out a deal with Tokyo Broadcasting System Television (TBS), Esquire will run a Ninja Warrior marathon Sept. 3-Sept. 6.

Esquire Network is part of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment. The NBC broadcast network has a summer hit in Ninja Warrior spinoff American Ninja Warrior.

NewNinja Warrior competitions will air for the first time in the United States on Esquire Network in 2017.   

“Esquire Network is thrilled to be airing the original Ninja Warrior episodes that launched a cultural phenomenon in the United States,” said Matt Monos, senior VP of programming and acquisitions, Esquire Network. “Drawn to the extraordinary strength and talent of these fierce competitors, the series quickly developed a strong fan base when it began on G4. Esquire Network is excited to serve this loyal audience with the high impact, addictive television they crave.” 

Cable channel G4 ceased operation at the end of 2014.

"As there have been so many requests to bring Ninja Warrior back in the U.S., we are very happy and excited that Esquire is bringing back Ninja Warrior and Women of Ninja Warrior, along with the brandnew episodes based on 'Sasuke #28' and beyond which were never broadcast in the U.S.," said Makito Sugiyama, chief of TBS Global Business.   

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.