American Ninja Warrior Season 8 premiered on June 1st to strong ratings and an excited audience. It takes quite a large village to produce a show of this magnitude. A big part of that happens in the production trailer right on set. Here, producers, directors, and their crews carefully scope every camera angle, and snag every shot needed for the perfect episode in real time.
A. Smith and Co, the production company behind American Ninja Warrior, puts their talents to work creating the high energy show each season.
We were invited into the production trailer on the Los Angeles set for a look at what happens behind those closed doors. Here are 5 things we learned.
1.) It almost looks like the finished product
The producers are gathered in the dark around dozens of TV screens live feeding them the work of the camera operators. It was surprising just how close these shots are to being ready to air. You can see the episode taking shape right then and there.
2.) Matt and Akbar's most hilarious commentary happens on the down-low
Look, those two are pros at staying up all night, staying energized and always having something to say. But they're human. Things get a little silly around 3 am when too much caffeine kicks in. You won't get to hear it on the show, but these guys could take their act on tour. The production trailer gets to enjoy the laughs though.
3.) The producers can predict a Ninja's run like nobody's business
As well they should. They scour the thousands of audition tapes to find the right Ninjas. And they've been doing this for quite awhile. It was shocking to hear how accurate they are at predicting a competitor's success from watching just their first step on to the course.
4.) The camera operators move fast
Try this. Run about 100 yards. Now run back to the start. Now run down again. Now do that at least 100 times (not kidding).
Got it? Good. Now pick up a huge camera and do it again. Welcome to the life of an American Ninja Warrior camera operator. They're pretty much as fit as the competitors. You don't really get to take this in unless you're watching their endless runs in the production trailer.
5.) The producers get just as excited as the fans
You know that moment when the competitor is hanging on by their fingertips... you're on the edge of your seat, screaming at the TV for them to make it? You're not alone. The producers are doing the same thing. When the Ninja does land that epic success, they're cheering and giving high-fives like it was their own friend out there.
What interests you about how American Ninja Warrior comes together? Tell us in the comments what you'd like to learn more about!