×

Netflix Orders Fifth Original Series From Spain: ‘Hache’

“Money Heist,” the streaming giant’s most watched non-English-language original thus far, has solidified Spain as a powerful production ally

SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA, Spain — Continuing its push to produce local content in Spain, Netflix has announced the commission of new original series “Hache,” created and written by “Velvet Collection” scribe Verónica Fernández.

Her 2001 feature “El Bola” earned the writer a Spanish Academy Goya nomination for best original screenplay.

The series’ eight hour-long episodes are based on real events surrounding Helena, a woman at the heart of 1960s heroin trafficking in Barcelona. Helena will be played by Goya-nominated actress Adriana Ugarte (“The Time Between,” “Julieta”), joined on screen by Javier Rey, who this year took home the best actor award at Malaga Film Festival for his performance in “Sin Fin.”

The series is scheduled for release in more than 190 territories in 2019.

Since first launching in Spain in 2015, Netflix has embraced local content production. “Hache” will be the VOD platform’s fifth original Spanish fiction series production. The first, “Cable Girls,” launched in April of 2016. Since then “Elite,” “Paquita Salas” and the next season of “Money Heist” (“La Casa de Papel”) have all joined their Spanish originals slate. Announcing its first quarter results in April, Netflix confirmed that its first. two-part season, produced by Atresmedia and Vancouver Media, and acquired by Netflix, had become its most-watched non English-language show,

A new Spanish outfit, Weekend Studio, founded by veteran film and TV producer Tomás Cimadevilla and director Jorge Iglesias, will produce.

“We are very proud that our first project is an original series of Netflix,” producers Cimadevilla and Jorge Iglesias said in a statement.

“Our vocation as a company is global and with Netflix that objective is assured. We hope that this is the first stage of a long and fruitful collaboration.

“The world that Tomás and Jorge have created is unique, fresh and attractive for everyone,” said Erik Barmack, vice president of international originals at Netflix, via a statement. “We are ready to add ‘Hache’  to our growing list of Spanish-language series for a global audience.”

Cimadevilla saw large success last decade as a producer of upscale relationship comedy movies, such as “The Other Side of the Bed,” set in modern-day Spain. Launched by Cimadevilla and Iglesias in 2017, Weekend Studio is an entirely different proposition, aiming to create upscale scripted drama for the digital space which consolidate screenwriters as show runners. The series will run a large gamut of genres, Cimadevilla told Spanish news site Audiovisual 451 in March.

Cimadevilla and Iglesias will present Weekend Studio at this week’s Conecta Fiction.

With rumors that Netflix has placed an order for a new series with Bambu Productions, producers of “Cable Girls,” and Netflix doc series “El crimen de Alcàsser,” the large question is whether the U.S. streaming giant will soon have built a Spanish drama series portfolio which can rival Movistar +, Spain’s biggest pay TV platform, in not only the quality of such series but also their production volume.

Owned by telecom Telefonica, Movistar+ looks set to release 11-12 Movistar original series in 2018.

More TV

  • UTA

    UTA Launches Sports Division, Invests in Klutch Sports Group

    UTA is diving into the sports arena through an investment in Klutch Sports Group, the agency that represents LeBron James and other stars. Klutch Sports founder Rich Paul will serve as head of the newly created UTA Sports wing in addition to running his own banner. Paul launched Klutch Sports in 2012 in Cleveland. UTA [...]

  • The Ultimate Guide to 2019 Comic-Con

    The Ultimate Guide to 2019 Comic-Con Parties and Activations

    Hollywood is heading down the California coast to San Diego because It’s time for 2019 Comic-Con International. The annual cosplay celebration officially kicks off tomorrow, July 18, with a preview happening tonight. Here, Variety gives you a guide to this year’s parties and activations. Make sure to check back for updates. Wednesday, July 17Amazon Prime [...]

  • Ken Ehrlich Jane Ortner Education Award,

    Grammy Awards Producer Shuffle: Ben Winston to Take Over From Ken Ehrlich in 2021

    As Variety reported in December, Ben Winston will take the reins of the Grammy Awards as executive producer in 2021 after longtime telecast leader Ken Ehrlich completes his 40th ceremony next year. Winston has become a prolific producer for CBS and other outlets since he moved to the U.S. nearly five years ago to launch [...]

  • Sarah Wright Takes Charge of Sky

    Sarah Wright Takes Charge of Sky Cinema After Management Shuffle

    Sarah Wright, Sky’s top acquisitions exec, will take on responsibility for Sky Cinema after a management shuffle at the pay-TV giant. Wright fills a role vacated by Ian Lewis, who recently left Sky after 20 years. He was one of several Sky staffers to leave after its takeover by Comcast. As director of Sky Cinema [...]

  • Jodi Long Running for SAG-AFTRA Secretary-Treasurer

    Jodi Long Running for SAG-AFTRA Secretary-Treasurer on Matthew Modine Slate

    Veteran actress and union activist Jodi Long is running for secretary-treasurer of SAG-AFTRA as a member of Matthew Modine’s progressive Membership First slate. She is facing Camryn Manheim, who announced her candidacy on July 9 as part of the Unite for Strength slate for the re-election of union president Gabrielle Carteris. Unite for Strength and United [...]

  • BAFTA Backs BIFA’s Unconscious-Bias Training for

    BIFA’s Unconscious-Bias Training Rolls Out to BAFTA Voters, Wider Industry (EXCLUSIVE)

    The British Independent Film Awards is opening up its unconscious-bias training to BAFTA voters and, more widely, to anyone who judges the work of others in the film and TV business in the U.K. With the makeup of award-nominee and -winner lists under close scrutiny, BIFA introduced its unconscious-bias training last year. Its voters, jurors, [...]

  • New U.K. Film and TV Studio

    New U.K. Film and TV Studio Proposed for Leeds, in Northern England

    With studio space in high demand, a sizable new film and TV complex has been proposed for Leeds, the city in northern England that is fast becoming a major U.K. media hub outside of London. It has already been selected as the base for Channel 4’s new national headquarters, and companies such as pay-TV giant [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content