After five years off the air, Discovery Channel is reviving the iconic motorcycle-construction reality series American Chopper.
The famously feuding father-son team of Paul Teutul Sr. and Paul Teutul Jr. are back on board as the show’s bike-building craftsmen.
In the new show, the duo “set out reclaim their preeminent bike brands and – hopefully, rebuild some sort of relationship … with A-list celebrities, world famous athletes and Forbes 100 businesses as clients, millions of dollars and their brands’ reputations are on the line with every signature build.”
An update on the duo from Discovery: “The Teutuls have been on a wild ride, and it certainly isn’t ending anytime soon. Paul Sr. has revamped Orange County Choppers – turning it into a complex with a shop, café, bowling alley, restaurant and of course, the showroom – but all that didn’t come without a hefty price tag and he is feeling the burden of a high overhead and a lack of foot traffic. Meanwhile, Paul Jr. has also felt the sting of a rough economy – with his business built solely on high-dollar custom-builds and commissions becoming tougher to come by, Paul Jr. stresses about the long-term stability of his own shop, Paul Jr. Designs especially now that he has his own family.”
“American Chopper was one of Discovery’s most popular series ever,” said Rich Ross, Group President of Discovery. “Everyone is eager to see what the Teutul family has been up to. This winter, you’ll find out.”
The original American Chopper premiered as a special in 2002 and ran for 10 years, airing 223 episodes before being cancelled in 2010 and then was rebooted as the spinoff American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior for another two years.
One of Discovery’s most popular programs, American Chopper averaged 3.4 million viewers at its peak. The show also helped pioneer the “docusoap” reality genre making way for shows like Keeping Up with the Kardashians and The Real Housewives of Orange County, plus inspired a surge of gear-head reality shows. The series has a simple format — a father and son building custom motorcycles amid frequent infighting. Yet nothing about the show’s colorful history has been straightforward. American Chopper has changed networks, switched names and was even previously canceled once before.
American Chopper returns to Discovery in the winter.