With the recent green light from Nickelodeon's Nicktoons, professional skateboarder and entrepreneur Rob Dyrdek is taking his Wild Grinders toy line to television.
Nickelodeon will produce 26 high-definition episodes of the original animated series, which features a skater crew of middle school kids, led by Lil Rob, who will be voiced by Dyrdek.
"[As a toy,] Wild Grinders did very well," said Tracy Tubera, 33, the brand's creative director. "We knew that we would expand to animation."
"The brand is based on Rob's experience growing up skaing," Tubera told ESPN. "It's kids having fun, and the series will take it even further, bringing in over-the-top animation, like skating with sharks, skating with jet packs, the sort of stuff that kids love."
"I wanted to make a cartoon that made me laugh," said Dyrdek, 37, who will also executive produce the show. "I have always tried to create programming that was funny. Skateboarding is a backdrop to our main characters' comedic situations, but not necessarily our primary focus."
"'Wild Grinders' is a great fit for Nicktoons because it has the comedy and adrenaline boys love," said Keith Dawkins, senior vice-president and general manager of Nicktoons and TeenNick. "Rob Dyrdek brings an authentic look at the skateboard culture and a diverse cast of characters who reflect our audience. We think they'll enjoy this dynamic journey of a 12-year-old skater and his friends."
'Wild Grinders' is scheduled to debut in 2012 and, according to Tubera, will be preceded this fall by brand-new shorts and multi-platform digital content.
'Wild Grinders' marks Dyrdek's fourth mainstream television production. He first hit the small screen with 'Rob & Big,' which ran 32 episodes on MTV. 'Rob Dyrdek's Fantasy Factory,' also on MTV, is now in its fourth season. Last year saw the debut of the professional skateboarder's Street League, a multi-city skateboard contest series televised live on ESPN. Street League's 2011 championship event, in Newark, N.J., runs August 28 (5-7 p.m. ET, ESPN2, ESPN3.com).
Wild Grinders action figures are available this month at Taco Bell.