×

‘Who Would You Take to a Deserted Island?’ Producer on New Spanish Netflix Original

BARCELONA – “Who Would You Take to a Deserted Island?” is the second directorial outing from Spain’s Jota Linares (“Animales sin collar”) a Netflix Original premiering on Friday, March 22 in competition at the Malaga Spanish Language Film Festival.

Starring María Pedraza, Jaime Lorente, Pol Monen and Andrea Ros, the film is the movie adaptation of a successful play which found remarkable success on Spain’s off-stage circuit.

The director says: “It’s my love-hate letter to my generation; a dramatic comedy about young people facing up to the person they have become. It’s a necessary, yet uncommon generational story in cinema.”

Variety talked to producer Beatriz Bodegas at La Canica Films (“Didi Hollywood,” “The Fury of a Patient Man”), about the film, and the significance of Netflix’s presence in Spain.

You have already tested the story on the stage. What were the main changes for the film adaptation?

It began as a short (“Ratas”) by the same director, and then it was brought to the stage where it became an audience and critical success. Linares was really eager to make a feature from it and we provide some air to the story, with elements that the stage didn’t allow such as different locations or close-ups.

Is the target audience young people?

I think the target is wider in the cinematic version of the story, although the stage version already had audiences of all ages. We hope the target now will be 16-year-olds and many more.

15 to 25 year-olds is particularly a challenging demographic in Spain. Why?

Right now there are fewer productions aimed at these ages. The very young and adults are the targets in our country with the largest offerings. Our movie looks for a kind of audience which not many movies are currently addressing. But, we believe that the story has a universal scope for more general audiences.

It’s a generational portrait with a bittersweet tone.

Yes. It’s a story exploring that time when you must take a step forward somewhere between what you wanted to become in your youth, and what you will actually be able to be.

How did Netflix become involved?

We were shooting Linares’ previous feature and offered “Island” to Netflix. They became involved very quickly. I told them that I really wanted to work in a different way than my usual productions, and I was really excited with the idea of shooting a Netflix Original. I must say that our experience has been excellent; we enjoyed complete freedom to make the feature –in casting, shooting, edition, all the production processes.

 What effect does Netflix have in territories like Spain?

If it hadn’t been for Netflix this movie –and many more– wouldn’t get done. Right know it’s been very difficult to make a medium-budget feature in Spain. Netflix gives you that freedom, and this is very welcome. In addition to that, if you know that 139 million of Netflix clients are potential viewers, it gives you a unique confidence for its international reach. Nowadays you don’t have to just make the movie; you have to look for formulas for the audiences to see it. And that is really difficult. Linares and I never thought about a conventional financing model for “Who Would You Take to a Deserted Island?”, because we think that the right exploitation and suitable audiences should come from Netflix.

You also don’t have to depend on the broadcasters and their publicity artillery…

Yes. Netflix allows you to close financing with certain directors and movies that otherwise wouldn’t be possible. You don’t have to worry about the box office. You have secured distribution and you know what reach the movie will have. From there it’s up to you whether the movie works or doesn’t, but you know at least you are going to be available in a huge number of homes. Beyond that, young audiences are consuming massively from platforms, and I really believe that it not only makes them online consumers but could also take them to theaters.

Do you have any upcoming projects at La Canica Films?

Yes, we have a comedy directed by Daniel Guzmán (“Nothing in Return”) and a drama by Raúl Arévalo ( “The Fury of a Patient Man”). Both are actor-directors.

CREDIT: La Canica Films

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Vanessa Kirby poses for photographers at

    Vanessa Kirby to Star in Drama 'Pieces of a Woman' (EXCLUSIVE)

    “Hobbs & Shaw” actress Vanessa Kirby is in negotiations to star in the Bron Studios pic “Pieces of a Woman,” sources tell Variety. Kornél Mundruczó will direct with Kata Wéber penning the script. Reps for Kirby could not be reached for comment. Specific plot details are being kept under wraps, but it is known that [...]

  • Suki WaterhouseSave the Children Centennial Celebration,

    Dark Castle, HanWay, Ingenious Team on Simon Barrett's 'Séance,' Starring Suki Waterhouse

    Dark Castle Entertainment, HanWay Films and Ingenious Media have partnered on horror film “Séance,” directed by Simon Barrett and starring Suki Waterhouse. Set in an all-girls boarding school haunted by a vengeful spirit, Waterhouse (“Assassination Nation,” “The Bad Batch”) plays Camille, a young woman who arrives at the Fairfield Academy following one of the student’s [...]

  • The Black List

    The Black List Reveals India Plans

    The Black List, an online yearly survey that features Hollywood’s most popular unpublished screenplays, is all set to make an imprint in India. The survey’s founder Franklin Leonard revealed this during a masterclass at the ongoing Mumbai film festival, where he is also serving as the head of the India Gold competition jury. “One of [...]

  • China Pavilion at TIFFCOM 2019

    'Still Life' Remake Heads for Japan-China Fund Backing

    A Japanese-language remake of British drama “Still Life” could be the first film to flow from a fund created to support Chinese-Japanese joint productions. The fund is operated by WeF Cultural Investment Media, a company founded earlier this year with the backing of government bodies in Beijing and Qingdao — the Chinese coastal city which [...]

  • Kanye West

    Kanye West to Preview ‘Jesus Is King’ Album and Film in Los Angeles on Wednesday

    On the heels of Monday’s announcement that Kanye West’s delayed “Jesus Is King” album will be released on Friday along with a companion IMAX film, the rapper will preview both projects at the Forum in Los Angeles on Wednesday, it was announced this morning. Tickets for the “Jesus Is King Album & Film Experience” will be [...]

  • Isabelle HuppertIsabelle Huppert Life Achievement Award,

    The Arcs Festival Taps Isabelle Huppert to Head The Talent Village For Young Helmers

    Guillaume Nicloux, the French director of “Valley of Love,” is set to preside over the jury of the Arcs Film Festival, while the iconic French actress Isabelle Huppert (“Elle”) will be the patron of the second edition of the Talent Village. Created last year, the Talent Village is a development workshop and platform for emerging [...]

  • Isaac Perlmutter Disney Marvel

    Does Kevin Feige's Marvel Promotion Mean Ike Perlmutter's Endgame?

    Last week’s move giving Kevin Feige charge of Marvel’s television, animation and print editorial operations should come as no surprise. As the architect of the company’s enormous film success, Feige arguably has the most enviable track record of any contemporary entertainment executive. Extending his creative control over more of the Marvel universe seems like a [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content