Travel Channel today announced that it has ordered three pilots and has started development on two original series intended to boost the network’s 2012 slate. Two pilots are car-based: Barn Finds, which features antique car expert Corky Coker, who travels the back roads of the Deep South searching for rare American cars and automotive memorabilia; and Power Trip With Jason Harper, featuring a travel, car and lifestyle writer who travels the world writing about his adventures from the driver’s seat. The third is the Kevin Michael Connolly Project, which follows the author, photographer and thrill-seeker — who was born without legs — as he explores new adventures around the world. The series in development are Coffee Hunters and City Swappers. The network’s descriptions follow:
NEW GREENLIT PILOTS
Barn Finds (wt) (two half-hour episodes) Produced by BCII with Travel Channel’s Sean McKnight as Executive Producer This half-hour series follows antique car expert Corky Coker, and his team, on a freewheeling road trip through the back roads and small towns of the Deep South. A man on a mission, Coker is on the hunt for barn finds – automotive diamonds-in-the-rough that have been hidden away or just forgotten for years. When he’s on target, Coker is wheeling, dealing, shucking and jiving, all to get the best price on the right car to restore and resell at his shop, Honest Charley Garage. When he’s distracted, Coker hits the scenic routes, roadside attractions and down-home restaurants – all the things that make for the kind of journey most of us no longer have time to take.
Kevin Michael Connolly Project (wt) (one hour pilot) Produced by Crazy Legs Production with Travel Channel’s David Gerber as Executive Producer Kevin Michael Connolly is an author, photographer and self-proclaimed thrill seeker who was born without legs – but he’s never let that get in his way. Connolly is on a mission to discover all this world has to offer – new cultures, meeting remarkable people and tackling difficult physical challenges. Getting around with only his hands and his skateboard, viewers will experience what makes Connolly an inspiration to us all.
Power Trip with Jason Harper (wt) (one hour pilot) Produced by Departure Films with Travel Channel’s Patrick McManamee as Executive Producer Jason Harper – travel, automobile and lifestyle journalist, has the best job in the world! He travels the world writing about his adventures from the driver’s seat of the world’s most interesting vehicles. From burning up Italy’s autostrada in a $300,000 Lamborghini, to a midnight Vespa cruise through a medieval Tuscan village with 80 of his newest friends, “Power Trip with Jason Harper” offers a unique and fresh perspective to the people, food, festivals, and cultures of different locales around the world. It’s cultural anthropology from the driver’s seat. This show offers fun, adventure, excitement and laughs around every turn.
SERIES IN DEVELOPMENT
Coffee Hunter (wt): Produced by Nancy Glass Productions with Travel Channel’s Bill Howard as Executive Producer Would you risk your life for the perfect cup of coffee? Todd Carmichael would. As owner of La Colombe Torrefaction – a premium coffee company based in Philadelphia, he travels the globe, sleeping under his car, avoiding warlords and bodily-harm, risking it all to bring back the perfect cup o’ joe. His business focuses on the best – coffee so rare it’s sought by the world’s top chefs and restaurants. Carmichael seeks out the most exotic, fascinating and dangerous places to find the perfect seed in the coffee plant. There’s an amazing story behind every cup.
City Swappers (wt): Produced by Stone Circle Films with Travel Channel’s Patrick McManamee as Executive Producer “City Swappers” (wt) follows the adventures of two couples that have swapped homes, cars, friends, favorite restaurants and culinary tastes for their vacation. From the moment they arrive in their new home away from home, the traders will be challenged with a list of tips and tasks created for them by each other with one goal – to give the visiting couple a true insider’s perspective on the best, the wildest, and the most awe-inspiring facets of their hometown.