×

Conecta Fiction: ‘The Cliff,’ ‘Spring,’ ‘Yellow Bird’ Feature at 2019 Pitch CoPro Series

PAMPLONA. Spain  —  Chile’s “The Cliff,” Argentina’s “In Search of Spring” and Spain’s “The Yellow Bird” feature in a 10-title lineup of drama series projects at the 3rd Pitch CoPro Series, the industry centerpiece of Conecta Fiction, the world’s foremost Europe-Latin American TV co-production and networking forum.

“Strong on genre and historical dramas,” observed Conecta Fiction director Geraldine Gonard of this year’s CoPro Series, the lineup shows its project creators plumbing Spanish and Latin America history via bio series (“Dolores”) and crime (“Lost Toys”) and action (”Spring”)  thrillers, suspense drama (“The Saddest Gaol”), and an adventure format (“The Yellow Bird”).

Two series projects are sci-fi (“2050,” “Fountain Mothers”), another horror (Dutch series “Greed”) as fantasy genre thrillers grounded or not in social realities, demonstrate a ready appeal both in linear TV and most especially for streaming platforms.

Nearly a third of the projects come from Chile, a sign of the country’s build as a TV production power.

Crime thriller “The Cliff” (“El Acantilado” ) is a case in point, the first drama series from Mediapro Chile a potentially key production-distribution force,”The Cliff” stars Benjamín Vicuña (“Locked Up”) and Mariana de Girolamo (“Ema”) in the redemption drama. It turns on a 50-year-old bus driver who, after a tragic accident, tries to save lives, talking people about of suicide at a cliff. But the deaths there, he discovers, are not always what they seem.

Following up on Netflix pick-up “Bala Loca,” Filmo Estudios’ crime drama-thriller “The Frontier,” show-run by David Miranda Hardy, delivers a noir-ish take on the conflict between indigenous communities and government in Chile’s deep South.

Produced by Macarena Lopez’s Manufactura de Peliculas (“Rara”), a third Chilean project, “The Saddest Goal,” represents a four-part miniseries version of the feature starring Luis Gnecco and Alfredo Castro, inspired by Chile’s two-leg qualifier for the 1974 Word Cup. Extraordinary  but true the FIFA authorized return match with the Sovietr Union was played in Chile’s National Stadium, then by used by Augusto Pinochet as a torture center.

“The Saddest Gaol” is one of five historical projects at Conecta Fiction this year. It’s also film production house Manufactura de Películas’ first series. Other titles – “In Search of Spring,” “THe Cliff,” “The Yellow Bird,” see renown filmmakers crossing over  into historical fiction.

The two – the crossover, historical fiction – may be linked. As Europe and Latin America’s movie industies pile into TV, one way they can leverage their expertise in cinema is via the studied use of sets, costume, VFX and crowd scenes more common in movies and especially historical fiction than other TV.

Again, in a market where many potential broadcaster partners look for an immediate local audience impact, and international audiences crave local detail, past events satisfy both criteria, without implying a necessary loss of universal resonance.

Historical drama series also often require an ambition  and scale which allows them to stand out in a crowd. This may be the case of two of the most ambitious projects at this year’s Pitch CoPro Series: “In Search of Spring.” “El pajaro amarillo.”

CREDIT: KaBoGa art & films

The first crossover into scripted drama by Buenos Aires-based Cepa Audiovisual, after 25 features, such as Julia Solomonoff’s “Nobody’s Watching,” and Darín starrer “Séptimo,” the true-facts inspired action thriller series turns on an extraordinary escapade in 1924 when Buenaventura Durruti (28) and Francisco Ascaso (23), the future leaders of Spain’s anarchist movement, are sent to America to raise money. Cold-shouldered by Latin America’s left, they end crossing Latin and North America robbing banks.

Set up at actor-producer Antonio Resines’ Madrid-based Producciones Clandestinas and billed as an adventure series, “The Yellow Bird” turns on the tenth French attempt to cross the Atlantic in airplane in just the first six months of 1929.

Written and to be directed by Anna Maria Bofarull, “Morir de Pie” is a bio series, tracing the life, womanhood and contradictions of Dolores Ibárruri, known an La Pasionaria ,sn inspired Republican troop orator during the Spanish Civil War, faithful Stalinist, and woman in the world of men.’

The latest project from Nacho Viale and Diego Palacio’s StoryLab, producers of the Netflix-acquired TV series “Estocolmo” and co-producers of Intl. Emmy nominated “La casa del mar,” “Lost Toys” jumps between two time-frames – 1936 Madrid and present-day Spain and Argentina set against the backdrop of the rise of extreme right and left-wing movements in these two historic periods. It is written by Lucas Molteni and Diego Vago, who were both co-writers on “Estocolmo.”  –

As European scripted series at large, Conecta Fiction also pays witness to the rise of genre. Three of its 10 titles are “hard” genre – sci-fi or horror – many more series noir.

Of sci-fi titles, produced by Mondo TV Iberoamericana,VIP 2000 TV and Casablanca “2050” is set in a post-apocalypse dystopia where art is illegal, feelings suppressed by a mandatory chip, and literature one of the only hopes for revolution.

Created by Spain’s Fernando Cámara and Angel Ortega, and described as a “scientific thriller,” “Fountain Mothers” is set in the stunning valley of Panticosa, in the high Pyrenees, where a pregnant woman’s death appears linked to a local clinic.

Directed by Eché Janga and lead-written by Oscar van Woensel, the six-episode horror-drama “Greed” is set up at Dutch production house Lemming (“Fenix”). In it, a group of Rotterdam restaurant workers are offered all the money they could ever wish for. They soon learn why.

CREDIT: Fernando Cámara

More TV

  • Picture shows: Gemma Foster (SURANNE JONES)

    India's Hotstar to Remake BBC Thriller 'Doctor Foster'

    Hit BBC thriller “Doctor Foster” is to be remade in India following the sale of the scripted format to streaming platform Hotstar Specials. Disney-owned Hotstar has collaborated with BBC Studios to adapt the series for Indian audiences. Indian filmmakers Tigmanshu Dhulia and Aijza Khan are directing the show, which is yet to be titled and [...]

  • Facebook Logo

    Facebook Watch Signs Content Pact With France's M6, Unveils European Short-Form Slate

    Facebook Watch has inked a content pact with French channel M6 and unveiled a slate of short-form content from European digital publishers for the platform. The deal with M6 will see the French broadcaster place spinoff programming from some of its hit shows on Facebook Watch. M6 will run pre- and after-show clips, interviews, and [...]

  • TV News Roundup: Amazon Drops ‘Marvelous

    TV News Roundup: Amazon Releases ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ Season 3 Trailer

    In today TV’s news roundup, Amazon Prime Video releases the Season 3 trailer for “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” and Showtime announces Celeste Barber’s standup special premiere date.  DATES Showtime’s forthcoming comedy special “Celeste Barber: Challenge Accepted” will air Nov. 1.  This marks Barber’s televised standup debut. She is best-known for her viral Instagram hashtag #celestechallengedaccepted. [...]

  • Tom Succession

    'Succession': Matthew Macfadyen on the Status of 'Tomelette' After Season 2 Finale

    Matthew Macfadyen hasn’t even seen the second season finale of “Succession” yet, but says he wasn’t surprised by how it ended when he read the script. Over the course of the series, Macfadyen’s character Tom has suffered at the expense of the Roy family on personal and professional levels. Will he turn a new leaf [...]

  • Jason Sudeikis Apple

    Jason Sudeikis Sets Ted Lasso Comedy Series at Apple

    Jason Sudeikis is bringing his Ted Lasso character to Apple’s upcoming streaming service. Variety has learned that Apple TV Plus has given a series order to “Ted Lasso,” on which Sudeikis will star in addition to writing and executive producing. In the series, Sudeikis plays Lasso, an idealistic all-American football coach hired to manage an [...]

  • CENTRAL PARK FIVE

    Netflix and Ava DuVernay Sued by Police Interrogation Firm

    The company behind a controversial police interrogation technique filed a federal lawsuit on Monday against Netflix and director Ava DuVernay, claiming that it was defamed in DuVernay’s miniseries on the Central Park jogger case. John E. Reid and Associates developed the Reid Technique in the late 1940s, and it has continued to offer training materials [...]

  • Noah Oppenheim

    NBCU Has Likely Succession Plan Set at NBC News

    NBC News President Noah Oppenheim has been battling Ronan Farrow in recent and disturbing headlines, but the executive remains the most likely candidate to succeed NBC News and MSNBC Chairman Andy Lack, according to people familiar with the matter. Lack, who has seen NBC News through one of its most tumultuous eras, has a contract [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content