Watch Allison Janney Crush The American Ninja Warrior Course

Mom stars Anna Faris and Allison Janney headed over to the set of The Ellen DeGeneres Show to promote the upcoming second season of CBS’ comedy. While on set, they were not immune to Ellen’s penchant for getting her guests to try different games. Most of her games are silly and amusing, but this challenge had an added physical component. The game Ellen asked Faris and Janney to try? The “American Ninja Warrior Parking Lot Challenge!” See how the two actresses fared, below.

Ellen’s actually got American Ninja Warrior to put together a pretty insane setup in the parking lot. The challenges are similar to the actual ones the real competitors are forced to conquer on the hit TV series, with Quintuple Steps, the Cat Grab, the Dancing Stones, the Swing Jump and the Warped Wall all making an appearance. Additionally, hosts Matt Iseman and Akbar Gbaja-Biamila signed on to explain each of the obstacles to Ellen and the audience.

Janney steps up to do the obstacle course first. The agile older actress easily makes the first hop, but she decides to hang back and give Faris some help through the course. The two complete many of the obstacles together, although Faris chooses to skip a couple of the tougher sections (she must not be an athlete). Janney, on the other hand, is a beast and is determined in the video to make it to the Warped Wall.

The Warped Wall is one of the most important and iconic parts of the American Ninja Warrior run. The Warped Wall has been a staple of the challenge since the very beginning and is present on most of the courses in the series. American Ninja Warrior Evan Dollard says it is like, “running up the side of the building and catching a window ledge on the second floor. Of course, Janney and Faris are not actual competitors and would not be expected to run or jump as high as the crazy contestants who enter into the real show. The wall on Ellen’s show is lower and less daunting, although still very much an incredible challenge.

Eventually, Janney gets to the particularly tough obstacle in the video. She stretches, prepares and makes a run at the Warped Wall. Unfortunately, she doesn’t land her first or second attempt. On the bright side, this is The Ellen Show’s version of American Ninja Warror, so time is not a factor. She ends up getting it on the third try, enabling her to hit the buzzer.


Ellen tells Janney she can’t believe she did that, and Janney agrees, explaining what helped her to get up the wall.

“I can’t either, I didn’t think I was going to do that last one. And… just everyone, the cheers, the support, I had to do it.”

I don’t know about you, but I would love for this celebrity ninja warrior-type of premise to pop up on The Ellen Show sometime again. In the meantime, you can catch Allison Janney and Anna Faris in Mom on CBS starting on Monday, September 29 at 8:30 p.m. ET.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.