Filming starts in September 2016 for the pilot of a TV series called Bike Torque hosted by five-time world champion Mick Doohan and adventure rider Charley Boorman, featuring international locations and an Aussie studio audience.
The four-week shoot will take the two motorcycle legends and film crew to Japan, USA, Spain and Italy as well as some locations in South East Queensland near Mick’s home. And Aussie riders can be part of the studio audience!
Fellow executive producer and project funding manager Clare Katavich of Australian company STAGE Films says Mick is very excited about the project, Charley is “definitely in” and they are talking to a US motorcycle celebrity as the third host. “Charley is a wonderful guy to work with,” she says.
“Bike Torque will be like a two-wheeled version of Top Gear and might include some cycling as well to create some controversy.
“It’s about all things on two wheels.”
STAGE Films has raised the funding for the $500,000 pilot and is attracting more investors to film the $7m 13-part first series. The initial budget will be $500,000 per episode, increasing as the series grows and attracts sponsorship.
“So far we’ve been inundated with investors,” she says.
Clare hopes to show the pilot on “wide-access media” and sell the series to an international audience after Australian free-to-air TV showed little interest.
“People just love the concept and it doesn’t matter where I’ve been, every single bike person wants the show to be overwhelmingly successful,” Clare says. “Europe is very excited about the project because they are mad about MotoGP over there.”
Bike Torque has now attracted a new executive producer who comes from LA and has valuable connections to US cable networks. “We want to get into the important US market,” Clare says.
Some sections of the show will be filmed before a live audience most likely in South East Queensland. Riders interested in being a part of the studio audience should stay tuned to MotorbikeWriter.com, as well as the Bike Torque Facebook page for audience calls.
One of the more popular segments of the show is expected to be Celebrity Challenge – Run the Gauntlet featuring celebrities either learning to ride or tackling various riding challenges on a custom “Ra-Ra” bike made for the show by Rebels Alliance of London.
Producers plan to include a stellar line-up of guests including Tom Cruise, Eric Bana, Justin Timberlake, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Johnny Depp, George Clooney, Pink, David Beckham, Clint Eastwood, Ryan Gosling, Ewan McGregor, Ryan Reynolds, John Travolta, Hugh Laurie, Keanu Reeves, Jay Leno, Jason Statham, Wyclef Jean, Tim Allen, Orlando Bloom, Harrison Ford, Morgan Freeman, Hilary Swank and Jimmy Buffett.
There will also be the usual motorcycle and car racers such as Valentino Rossi, Casey Stoner, Craig Lowndes, Wayne Gardner, Kevin Schwanz and Sebastian Vettel.
Clare says paying appearance fees for celebrities will be their biggest cost, but she believes the opportunity to ride with Mick will be a big attraction for them.
A typical show format is expected to feature bike reviews, funny bike clips, motorcycle travel, celebrity chats, MotoGP reviews, stunts, a custom bike competition, safe riding tips, gear and equipment reviews, motocross tracks and trails, maintenance tips and classic bikes.
- Send investment enquirers directly to Clare Katavich via email or on +61 (0)404138028 and uk +44 (0)7721852923.