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'American Chopper' cancelled (again), series finale to air in December


By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 11/21/2012 

American Chopper is officially on the chopping block -- again.

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Discovery Channel has announced it's ending American Chopper, which stars bike builders and father-son duo Paul Teutul Sr. and Paul Teutul Jr.. The series, which debuted in 2002, was previously canceled in 2010 but resurrected several months later.

"After 10 years and 233 episodes of incredible, riveting reality television, American Chopper will be ending its run," Discovery and TLC executive Eileen O'Neill told Entertainment Weekly in a statement.

"This series was one of the very first family-based reality programs on television. Special thanks to Pilgrim Studios for over a decade of great producing. The Teutuls have given us really innovative bike builds and real drama since 2002. We wish both Orange County Choppers and Paul Junior Designs the best."

American Chopper will conclude with a previously-announced four-way bike build-off special airing on December 10 and 11 at 9PM ET/PT. The competition, entitled The Revenge, will take place in Las Vegas and feature Outlaw Garage star Jesse James and bike fanatics Richard Rawlings and Aaron Kaufman in addition to the feuding father and son.

Immediately following Monday night's special, fans will have the chance to vote for their favorite bike after seeing the four finished products.

On Tuesday night, The Revenge will air from Las Vegas' Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and feature "family drama, intense rivalry and some of the most innovative and impressive designs and construction in bike building history," according to the network. 

"I have mixed emotions. It's had a great run. We had a lot of ups and downs. There's been so much that's happened to this family over the last 10 years. We've seen them grow to a huge motorcycle shop. We've seen them fight bitterly. We've seen them sue each other. And recently we've seen them come together to open up a new business. I think the show has come full circle," American Chopper executive producer Craig Piligian told EW.

"This was the first family docusoap. They put on display, for all to see, what really happens in a tight family business, warts and all. I'm really proud they were so open and honest."

American Chopper originally premiered on Discovery in 2002 as a special and then launched into a regular-airing series several months later. The show later changed networks in 2008, switching over to Discovery's sister channel TLC. However, after a couple successful years, the Teutul family's ongoing disagreements with each other and producers escalated to the point where TLC just decided to end the show entirely. 

In 2010, the father and son began reconciling and the series returned to TLC as American Chopper: Junior vs. Senior. The show subsequently changed its title back to American Chopper and returned to its Discovery Channel roots.

"American Chopper was canceled before and we came back even stronger," Piligian added. "It's been a resilient, powerful show. Right now they're telling me it's canceled. I can only comment: 'Who knows what the future holds.'"

(Photo credit TLC)


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