Turner, Sebastian Ortega, Bruno Stagnaro Team For ‘Un Gallo Para Esculapio’

TV series re-teams Turner with ‘El Marginal’ creator, famed cineaste, TV director Stganaro

BUENOS AIRES — Time Warner’s TNT is teaming in Argentina with Sebastian Ortega and Pablo Cullel’s Buenos Aires-based Underground Producciones to co-produce and air adventure thriller “Un Gallo Para Esculapio.” A shorter format 10-episode TV series, “Un Gallo” reps the return to TV direction of Bruno Stagnaro and the latest show from Underground, a driving force of upscale TV fiction in Argentina which leapt to international prominence after the Sebastian Ortega show-run “El Marginal” won top prize at Paris’ Series Mania this year and was picked up by Netflix, airing from October.

“Gallo” also marks part of TNT’s original production rollout in Argentina – with Mexico its key territory hub in Latin America – as it rings the changes on new windowing and co-financing arrangements which are one hallmark of the new Latin American TV.

Stagnaro broke through to fame co-directing with Israel Adrian Caetano “Pizza, Birra, Faso,” a 1998 movie which scored box office, plaudits and critical praise, demonstrating the artistic and commercial viability of low-budget filmmaking in Argentina. Aired in 2000, Stagnaro’s 11-seg squatter-themed “Okupas,” is likewise thought a highpoint of early century Argentine TV.

Written by Stagnaro and actor Ariel Staltari, who starred in “Okupas,” and to be directed by Stagnaro, “Un Gallo para Eculapio” returns to the same world of criminality and life-on-the-margins which Ortega explores so well in “El Marginal.” It follows a man who comes to Buenos Aires from its deep north Misiones province to look for his brother, who was last heard of working for a criminal gang. He infiltrates a criminal organization, which robs trucks carrying merchandise, TV sets, stern systems, hoping to know more about his brother.

For Ortega, Stagnaro is a natural creative bedfellow. Stagnaro is a writer-director whom I admire a lot. “Okupas” in 2000 was one of the main reasons that back then I was like: ‘There is a chance to do different things on network TV,’” Ortega said.

He added: “Everything he has done in the past is linked to that marginal universe. He has a talent for portraying that lifestyle that is pretty similar to mine.”

Like “The Sopranos,” another major inspiration for Ortega, he said,  “Un  Gallo Para Esculapio” “shows you who each character is, the duality between what they do for a living and how they live their life.”

TNT has first TV window. The partners are negotiating with a free-to-air broadcaster for second TV window in Argentina. TNT, Ortega’s Underground and Telefe teamed in 2015 to make “Historia de un clan,” about the notorious supper middle-class assassin kidnappers Clan Pucci which again won in France, taking the top prize at Biarritz’s FIPA fest in January 2016. Here, Telefe, Argentina’s biggest TV network, took first broadcast window and TNT screened a day later.

That, Turner’s Mariano Cesar said at Ventana Sur’s new Fiction Factory forum, is the new TV reality in Latin America.

Based out of Buenos Aires and handling TNT and TNT Series, Cesar is also overseeing for Turner a co-production with Pol-ka, another top Argentine TV production house, on “La Fragilidad de los cuerpos,” with Eva de Dominichi, Juan Gil Navarro and German Palacios.

Cesar said TNT is “quite agnostic” about series’ length, fully financing or bringing in multiple equity partners, and release window chronology.

Ortega agreed:“I was watching a Bruce Lee interview I have seen many times. He was talking about water, how it fits into a cup of tea, a can of soda, a bottle, Producers that do content at the moment, where the industry is in the middle of a transition, we are like water. We have to learn to adapt.”

More TV

  • SDCC TV News Roundup: Syfy Releases

    SDCC TV News Roundup: Syfy Releases 'The Magicians' Season 5 Clip (Watch)

    In today’s SDCC TV news roundup, Syfy shares a clip from “The Magicians” Season 5, and Amazon sets the Season 4 premiere of “The Expanse.” CASTING Julie Gonzalo and Staz Nair have joined the cast of “Supergirl” for its upcoming fifth season. Gonzalo will portray iconic DC character Andrea Rojas aka Acrata, a polished businesswoman [...]

  • Doom Patrol -- Ep. 101 --

    'Doom Patrol' Renewed, Season 2 to Stream on DC Universe and HBO Max

    “Doom Patrol” has been renewed for a second season and will soon be available outside of DC Universe. At San Diego Comic-Con, series executive producer Jeremy Carver and star Diane Guerrero announced not only that the show will be back for another season but also that it will be available on HBO Max, the upcoming [...]

  • Teyonah Parris

    Teyonah Parris Cast in 'WandaVision' at Disney Plus

    “Mad Men” and “If Beale Street Could Talk” actress Teyonah Parris has been cast in Disney Plus’ “Wanda Vision” series. She will play an adult version of Monica Rambeau, a child character introduced in the film “Captain Marvel.” The announcement was made at Marvel’s Comic-Con presentation. The forthcoming Disney+ series about Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth [...]

  • Zachary Quinto as Charlie Manx - NOS4A2

    'NOS4A2' Renewed for Season 2 at AMC

    AMC has renewed “NOS4A2” for a second season. The news was announced during the show’s panel at San Diego Comic-Con and ahead of the Season 1 finale. Season 2 will consist of 10 episodes and is slated to air in 2020. The series, which is based on the 2013 Joe Hill novel of the same [...]

  • Gabrielle Carteris

    SAG-AFTRA Signs Netflix Deal With Expanded Coverage

    SAG-AFTRA and streaming giant Netflix have agreed to a new three-year contract with expanded coverage for union performers. Netflix has previously employed SAG-AFTRA members under the union’s standard master contracts for television and film and had been signing on a production by production basis. The union announced Saturday that the new deal recognizes performance capture as covered work [...]

  • Cara Delevingne'Carnival Row' TV show photocall,

    Cara Delevingne Says Her 'Carnival Row' Character Is Pansexual, Explains Defending Taylor Swift Against Justin Bieber

    Cara Delevingne and Orlando Bloom’s love affair may be at the center of the upcoming Amazon Prime Video series “Carnival Row,” but the British actress doesn’t want viewers to assume her faerie character is heterosexual. “I’m a pansexual faerie,” Delevingne told Variety during an exclusive one-on-one interview at Comic-Con adding that there are other queer [...]

  • 'Russian Doll' Star Charlie Barnett Joins

    'Russian Doll' Star Charlie Barnett Joins 'Arrow' Final Season

    “Russian Doll” standout Charlie Barnett is joining the “Arrowverse.” Barnett, who is having a busy year having also appeared in Netflix’s “Tales of the City,” comes on board in the series regular role of John Diggle, Jr., son of David Ramsey’s character. News of his casting was announced at the show’s farewell Comic-Con panel where things [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content