A&E greenlights 'Inked' spinoff

'Tattoo Highway' will star Thomas Pendelton and his wife

A&E is getting some new ink.

The network has ordered 13 episodes of a reality series starring tattoo artist Thomas Pendelton, star of the network's previous tattoo-related docusoap "Inked."

In "Tattoo Highway," Pendelton and his wife and business partner, Monica (who also appeared on "Inked"), have transformed a 1970s tour bus into a mobile tattoo parlor. They will travel to cities including Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix and Salt Lake City, inking customers.

Executive producer Bob Horowitz said the traveling element will differentiate the show from previous tattoo docusoaps.

"All the other series have been based in tattoo parlors," he said. "Here the premise is this is the first tattoo parlor on wheels, and he goes where the stories are. Imagine all the things that can happen when you take something like this on the road and all the things that can happen."

In one episode, Pendelton mixes the cremated ashes of a deceased wife into the ink for a portrait on her husband's chest. In another, he uses UV ink for a tattoo visible only with a black light for a customer wanting a constant reminder of his mother.

"From the creation of the art to the environment that I tattooed in, it has always been about my customers' experience," Pendelton said. "In a street shop, it was easy to forget just how personal that experience should be. Rolling up and parking the shop right in the middle of someone's life, well, there is nothing more personal than that."

A&E plans to premiere the half-hour series in the spring.

"Highway" producers Horowitz and Lewis Fenton also just made a deal with Bravo for a new docudrama series called "Double Exposure," which follows fashion photographers Markus Klinko and Indrani, along with stylist GK Reid. The show will give viewers a behind-the-scenes look at fashion and celebrity photography.

"Success in this business is finding talent that jumps off the screen, people who are unique and true to their business," Horowitz said. "They are the real deal and you see they are truly characters. The series is bound to be a success."
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