×

Movistar + First Original Series ‘Velvet Collection’ Makes a Record-Breaking Bow

Made available from Sept. 22, the fashion store melodrama launches as Movistar +’s most-watched series in its history

MADRID — “Velvet Collection,” the first high-end Movistar + original series made available to clients, has broken records for the Telefonica Spanish pay TV operator, it announced late Wednesday, also confirming “Velvet Collection” had been renewed for a second season.

Movistar + has already announced at a San Sebastián Festival press conference on Sept. 29 that its flagship series, 1580 Seville-set “The Plague,” a historical crime drama, has also been re-upped for Season 2, though its first season will not play on Movistar + until next January.

Produced with Bambú Producciones and sold by Beta, “Velvet Collection,” a spin-off sequel to “Velvet,” has become the most-seen series ever to screen on the Movistar + platform, beating out “Games of Thrones,” according to a Movistar + statement.

That record is based on viewers for the first two of the series’ 10 episodes, aired on Sept. 22 and Oct. 1. Comparison against “Game of Thrones” will be made on the basis of all seasons. As further guidance, Movistar + said, however, that “in its first days,” “Velvet Collection” achieved “similar figures” to the bow of Season 7 of “Game of Thrones” on Movistar +.

Set in 1967, the series jumps from “Velvet’s” Madrid to Barcelona, exchanging the “Mad Men-ish” world of cinched waists for the Swinging ‘60s, as Ana returns from New York to Spain to open a  new Gallerias Velvet store on Barcelona’s prestige Passeig de Gracia.

This is the year of the mini, and Ana presents Velvet’s first collection out of Barcelona – mini-skirts in burnt-amber, pink and mustard yellow, high-heeled boots, and models with bobs, beehives and head-bands – as she and Clara begin to battle for control of Velvet with a marauding entrepreneur Eduard Godó.

“Velvet Collection’s” viewer triumph can be read several ways. The series maintains its signature pop technicolor palette, composed framing, knock-out settings – such as scenes in the Catalan countryside – modern pop song score, vintage cars, and main stars, led by Marta Hazas as Clara, who will run Velvet as Ana (Paula Echeverría) returns again to New York.

Airing for four seasons on free-to-air TV network Atresmedia, and set in a a Madrid Galerías Velvet upscale fashion store, “Velvet” was never the highest-rating of recent Spanish series. But its stature has grown as it has sold around the world, proving hugely popular in Latin America, where it helped Atresmedia Internacional, the broadcast network’s three-channel international pay-TV bouquet, quadruple household reach to 50 million pay TV homes over 2013-2017.

Viewership for Spanish series, such as “Velvet,” on Netflix in Latin America, was also one reason persuading the U.S., streaming giant to invest in more high-end Spanish series.

In “Velvet,” Bambu Producciones’ Ramón Campos and Teresa Fernandez-Valdés have also created a woman’s melodrama which offer a modern alternative to audiences once fixated on long-running telenovelas or soaps. Audiences of “Velvet Collection” are to date 62% female, Movistar + said.

“Velvet Collection” also represents a triumph for VOD viewership in Spain. The first two episodes have been made available on a weekly basis on Movistar’s #0 channel, but also via catch-up VOD, which represents 62% of viewership.

Next up on Movistar + is “La Zona,” a family and detective drama set in a community devastated by a nuclear plant meltdown, co-created by Jorge and Alberto Sánchez-Cabezudo (“Crematorium”) and one of Movistar +’s two International Screenings, with “The Plague,” at mid-October’s Mipcom trade fair.

 

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Minyan

    'Minyan': Film Review

    Best known for the unexpectedly soul-shattering San Francisco suicide doc “The Bridge,” indie filmmaker Eric Steel came out and came of age in 1980s New York at a moment just before AIDS devastated the city’s gay community. Such timing must have been surreal, to assume something so liberating about one’s own identity, only to watch [...]

  • Animated Movie 'The Queen's Corgi' Fetches

    Film New Roundup: Animated Movie 'The Queen's Corgi' Fetches North American Distribution

    In today’s film news roundup, “The Queen’s Corgi” finds a home, the Overlook Film Festival is postponed and the California Film Commission adjusts its tax credit rules due to the coronavirus. ACQUISITION Freestyle Digital Media has acquired North American rights to the animated family comedy feature “The Queen’s Corgi,” and plans to make it available on DVD and to [...]

  • APA Logo

    APA Sets Salary Cuts and Furloughs in Wake of Covid-19 Pandemic

    Following in the steps of several agencies dealing with the coronavirus, APA has informed all offices of upcoming salary cuts along with possible suspensions and furloughs for employees due to the pandemic’s economic effect on the industry. APA board of directors will make the largest financial sacrifice. The move has been made to avoid layoffs [...]

  • SAG-AFTRA HQ

    DGA, SAG-AFTRA, WGA Scramble to Keep Residuals Flowing During Coronavirus Pandemic

    Hollywood’s creative guilds have been working overtime to keep residual checks going out to members during the coronavirus crisis. Even though most of the staff members of the Directors Guild of America, SAG-AFTRA and the Writers Guild of America West have been working remotely, the guilds have stepped up efforts to maintain the flow of [...]

  • Hannah Marks, Dylan Sprouse. Hannah Marks,

    How a Bart Simpson T-Shirt Delayed Dylan Sprouse’s Movie ‘Banana Split’

    Long before the release of “Booksmart,” actress Hannah Marks set out to make a movie that would be the female bookend to “Superbad.” She started writing the script eight years ago, at 18, based on a real-life story about how, in high school, she befriended the girlfriend of her ex-boyfriend. Many drafts followed for “Banana [...]

  • Ryan Reynolds'6 Underground' film premiere, Arrivals,

    Ryan Reynolds in Talks to Star in 'Dragon's Lair' Film Adaptation for Netflix

    Ryan Reynolds is in talks to star in and produce a live-action feature adaptation of the ’80s arcade game “Dragon’s Lair” for Netflix. Roy Lee will produce through his Vertigo Entertainment with Trevor Engelson of Underground Films. Don Bluth, Gary Goldman and Jon Pomeroy are also producing. Reynolds will produce through his Maximum Effort production [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content