'American Chopper' Cancelled After 10 Years
If you are not familiar with the 'docusoap' genre, you've obviously never watched American Chopper, a pioneer series that documented a family of motorcycle-builders for ten years — until now. “After 10 years and 233 episodes of incredible, riveting reality television, American Chopper will be ending its run,” said Eileen O’Neill, president of Discovery and TLC Networks. “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,” O'Neill added, referring to the Teutul family at the heart of the show.
But American Chopper was not always a smooth-sailing endeavor, both on camera and behind the scenes. In a decade, the show changed networks from Discovery to TLC, saw a major real-life fight between father and son Paul Teutul Senior, 63, and Junior, 38, threatened to cancel the show for good, and even temporarily changed its title to American Chopper: Junior vs. Senior in 2010. “I have mixed emotions,” executive producer Craig Piligian told EW.com. “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.”
While Piligian says there is always a possibility of the show making a comeback or returning with a sequel, he places emphasis on the show's legacy: “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.”