NATPE: Spain’s Fernando Leon de Aranoa in Talks to Helm Joaquin Sabina Series (EXCLUSIVE)

Award-winning Spanish writer-director Fernando Leon de Aranoa (“Mondays in the Sun,” “Barrio”) is in talks to direct a bio-series about celebrated Spanish artist Joaquin Sabina.

Endemol Shine Boomdog, BTF Media and Sony Music Spain will jointly produce the scripted series as well as a documentary on Sabina, the latter with Leon de Aranoa’s Reposado Prods. Both projects are slated for release in 2020.

“It is great to have such an acclaimed director, producer and screenwriter as Fernando joining us on this journey,” said Endemol Shine Boomdog CEO Alejandro Rincon, adding: “Fernando’s extraordinary experience and his close relationship with Joaquin make him the perfect choice to lead these productions.”

Sabina, who is not only known as a world class singer-songwriter, but also as a poet and a painter, is considered one of the most influential artists in modern Spanish history. Born in Ubeda, Spain, in 1949, he was exiled to London in 1970 for his opposition to the regime of General Francisco Franco, and only returned after the military dictator’s demise.

 

He began performing in Madrid pubs and quickly rose to fame with the release of his first record, “Inventario.” He has released more than 20 albums and continues to give concerts. His album “19 Days and 500 Nights” sold over one million copies alone.

“Since day one when proposing to Sony Music Spain to make a Sabina project, something changed in my life; that is Sabina’s magic,” said Oriol Uria, CEO of BTF Media Spain.

Jose Maria Barbat, president of Sony Music Spain stated: “Joaquín Sabina is one of the key artists of Sony, with a career hard to match in our country and throughout the region. We had to develop a project with him, especially on his 70th birthday.”

According to Sergi Reitg, content director of Sony Music Spain, the bio-series fulfills their main objective: “To develop, among others, bio pics on top-level artists, with an international focus (especially for Spanish-speaking audiences), with the highest production quality and with the best partners in the sector.”

A Madrid native, León de Aranoa worked as a scriptwriter on Spanish TV before gaining international recognition with his ground-breaking 2002 social-realist film about unemployed Galicians, “Mondays in the Sun,” starring Javier Bardem. It went on to snag the Golden Shell at the San Sebastián Film Festival and five Goya awards.

His 1998 film about three teens in a poor Spanish neighborhood, “Barrio,” won him the San Sebastian Silver Shell for best director. His most recent film is “Loving Pablo,” starring off-screen Oscar-winning couple Penelope Cruz and Bardem.

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