The Mediapro Studio will showcase its content portfolio for the international market at Mipcom 2023, led by the two seasons of ‘The Head’. In the following interview, the studio’s distribution manager shares details about the company’s licensing business and the pipeline of original projects and alliances in Europe, Latin America and the US.
At a time of evolution in the audiovisual industry, The Mediapro Studio is positioned as an ideal partner to lead the increasingly growing volume of content demanded by global audiences.
With original projects and alliances in Europe, Latin America and the US, the Studio will be present at the upcoming edition of Mipcom 2023, with a wide and diverse offering of impressive new titles.
In the following interview with ttvnews, Marta Ezpeleta, Director of Distribution and International Offices at The Mediapro Studio; shares details about the company’s latest initiatives.
What is The Mediapro Studio’s strategy for the development and production of original content? We have the utmost respect for our creative talent, to whom we give absolute freedom so that they can develop their ideas, while at the same time we are very flexible to adapt to the needs of our clients. I believe that this combination, together with our very high production standards, which have consolidated the prestigious position we are in on an international level, make us a reference partner for any player around the world.
What type of content does The Mediapro Studio produce? The Mediapro Studio produces fiction content, both series and films, and non-fiction, including docuseries, documentaries and entertainment programs.
In the fiction area, it produces content of all genres. In drama, series such as ‘Las Pelotaris 1926’, ‘La edad de la ira’, ‘Las Bravas’ or the film ‘El 47’, currently in post-production phase; comedies such as the saga ‘Vota Juan’, ‘Primate’, ‘Consuelo’ or the films ‘El buen patron’ and ‘Competencia oficial’; thrillers such as ‘The Head’, ‘Express’ or ‘Mano de hierro’, and the feature films ‘Hunting Ava Bravo’ and ‘Give Me Your Eyes’; fantastic genre such as ‘Paraíso’ and ‘Romancero’, and such innovative titles as ‘El otro lado’, which unites horror with comedy.
In non-fiction, the studio produces successful docuseries released worldwide such as ‘Six Dreams’, awarded with two Emmy Awards; ‘Fernando’, about the Spanish Formula 1 driver Fernando Alonso; ‘Moto GP Unlimited’ or ‘El Palmar de Troya’, ‘Lola’, about the artist Lola Flores, or ‘Los ocho de Irak’. Regarding formats and programs, the studio is responsible for some of the biggest hits on TV in Spain with programs such as ‘El intermedio’ (18 years on air on LaSexta), ‘Zapando’ (10 years on air on LaSexta), ‘Atrápame si puedes’ (10 years on the air and broadcast on 11 regional channels in Spain), ‘La resistencia’ (7 seasons on Movistar Plus+) or ‘El conquistador’, the most real and extreme reality show on TV that after 19 successful seasons on Basque TV ETB, has now made the leap to the national level on RTVE.
Other notable non-fiction titles are ‘Una vida, una cena’, whose format has been adapted in Israel for KAN, the public TV network, and ‘El discipulo del chef’, broadcast for four seasons with enormous success on Chilevision.
How many original projects do you have in development and how many in production to date? At this moment we have ongoing projects and developments in Europe, Latin America and the United States; all in different phases of evolution. The studio’s activity is frenetic in this sense, so I prefer not to give an exact number of projects, as it could change quickly.
What production models are you most comfortable working with? Each project has its own production model, there is no preference or pre-established line. The studio has the necessary pulse to adapt to each client’s proposal. We are very flexible, as I said in the previous question, and this is one of the qualities that our partners most appreciate along with our responsiveness and quality of execution.
How relevant are content co-production alliances for The Mediapro Studio today? They are enormously relevant. I believe that the agreements and alliances that we have reached in recent years also show our credibility as a company and the positioning we enjoy in the industry worldwide. These commitments are the result of the trust we arouse in the market and are also part of the international expansion strategy led by the Studio.
What recent examples can you mention? Strategic alliances like the ones we signed last year with ViX, from which projects such as ‘Las Pelotaris 1926’, ‘Las cenizas de la gloria’ or ‘Consuelo’, still in production, have already emerged; the joint venture with the Turkish giant Mediapym to produce content in Spanish, or the launch of Moonlyon, Penélope Cruz’s production company. Also relevant is the agreement reached with the Belgian distributor Be-Entertainment for the adaptation of formats for Spain and Latin America, from which several titles have already come out such as ‘El musical de tu vida’, for Mediaset España, or ‘Esta casa es una mina’ for the Basque regional channel ETB in Spain and for the ITV channel in Portugal.
What is the relationship like with producers from Latin America and the Hispanic US? It is great, as with all our clients. Currently, we have productions underway with all the major broadcasters in the region, such as ViX, Prime Video, Disney+, Netflix or HBO Max, among others; and series that have also obtained applause from both critics and the public. For example, ‘Iosi, el espía arrepentido’, the thriller created by Daniel Burman about to premiere its second season on Prime Video, whose first installment has recently been double awarded by the Academy of Sciences and Arts and the General Society of Authors from Argentina.
Other standout titles are the comedy ‘Primate’ for Prime Video; the aforementioned ‘Consuelo’, ‘Las Pelotaris 1926’ and ‘Las cenizas de la gloria’ for ViX, or ‘Las bravas’ for HBO Max.
As far as the US is concerned, the studio is not limited to just Spanish-speaking content, but is also producing content in English with several projects in development at the moment. Likewise, we have the productions and projects of Wild Sheep Content, Erik Barmack’s company, owned by the Studio, which has produced titles such as ‘Hunting Ava Bravo’, a survival thriller directed by Gary Auerbach, with Kate del Castillo, released on Prime Video; and with titles such as ‘Give Me Your Eyes’, a suspense thriller also by Auerbach or, the project we have with John Turturro, the adaptation of the Pulitzer-winning novel “Is There no Place on Earth for Me?”
What titles and genres does The Mediapro Studio’s international distribution portfolio include? In addition to the fiction and non-fiction productions mentioned, with series such as ‘The Head’, ‘Express’, ‘La edad de la ira’, ‘Las Pelotaris 1926’, ‘Paraíso’, ‘Kosta (The Paradise)’; the films ‘El buen patrón’, ‘Competencia oficial’ and ‘El 47’; and non-fiction productions such as ‘El conquistador’, ‘Atrápame si puedes’ or ‘Una vida, una cena’; we also have third-party content in our portfolio.
For example, the titles of Johnson Production Group, one of the largest independent producers of film and fiction content for TV worldwide, with more than 3,000 hours produced both in release and in the library, or the film ‘Utama’, a film by Alejandro Loayza, Jury Prize at the 2022 Sundance Festival, awarded with four awards at the Malaga Festival (Best Ibero-American Film, Best Director, Best Music and the Critics’ Award), and with two Platinum Awards 2023 (Best Original Music and Best Cinematography), as well as nominated for Best Ibero-American Film at the latest Goya Awards and included in the shortlist of candidates for the Oscar for Best International Film.
Which titles will the studio be presenting at Mipcom 2023? We will be present with all our content, especially in this edition of Mipcom with star titles such as the two seasons of ‘The Head’, ‘Las Pelotaris 1926’ and outstanding non-fiction content such as ‘El conquistador’.