Smithsonian / ZDF / Arte
Production/Cient: Urban Canyons Ltd
Camera: Robin Probyn, Hiromichi Nakatani, John Wate
Music: Jan Tillman-Schade
Supported by Eu MEDIA film board / The Japan foundation


NINJA is unearthing the true history, unique military skills and ancient traditions behind the infamous Ninja, a small band of rebellious Japanese mountain villagers, who struck fear into ordinary people’s lives and were a constant thorn in the side of the battle hardened Samurai warrior clans.

The documentary tells the intriguing story of Ninja Tanba who was trained by his grandfather to become one of the most feared warriors in ancient Japan. NINJA follows Tanba’s life from boyhood to old age with the help of historic re-enactments, elaborate costumes and original Ninja weapons, supported by CG animation from an award-winning UK design team.

Featured experts include British and Japanese historians as well as Master Kawakami, one of the last (if not only) surviving Ninja masters, who demonstrates for the first time on television the unrivalled tricks the Ninja used to fool their enemies.