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Pol-ka at 25: 2019’s Production Slate Highlights

MADRID — Pol-ka’s banner titles straddle telenovelas and international-length series. Here are highlights, projects, productions and shows now screening packing one of the most ambitious slates of any Latin American company:

‘ARGENTINA, LAND OF PASSION AND REVENGE’ (Pol-ka)

The big one, at least for free-to-air. A period piece, so far more expensive to shoot, so rarer as a production, and a potential event series. A portrait of Spain’s diaspora to Argentina after its Civil War, the tawdry ethics of the new (and old) homeland, betrayal, passion, poverty and ill-gotten gains. A big play by Pol-ka to snatch Telefe’s ratings crown for El Trece. Overseas co-production potential.

“THE BRONZE GARDEN 2” (HBO Latin America, Pol-ka)

A HBO Latin America original, and directed by Pablo Fendrik (“Ardor”) and Hernán Goldfrid (“Thesis on a Homicide”), a missing daughter thriller. Elevating the father of the child into a tragic hero via meticulous character development and cinema-standard direction, 2017’s first season remains one of the finest achievements of recent Latin American TV. Shooting from August 2018, Season 2 has the father investigating another disappearance – of a 15-year-old boy. Big TV festivals beckon.

‘THE HOST 2’ (Fox Networks Group Latin America, Pol-ka)

A groundbreaking pay TV genre blender, part-musical performance, part-comedy sketches, and part-scripted drama, starring Suar as a lovelorn hotel manager who invites singers to perform. Impersonator Martin Bossi pops up as the hotel artistic director manager and, in one classic scene, as Leo Messi, capturing the soccer star’s chronic timidity. Renewed for Season 2, a close second to “The Walking Dead” on FNGLA in Argentina. Ripe for format export. Season 2 will add new stars, which makes things even more complicated for Suar’s character.

‘THE LOBBYIST’

A portrait of corruption and connivance in high places, and the 2018 highlight from the Polka-Turner alliance, airing from May 30 on El Trece. Rodrigo de la Serna (“The Motorcycle Diaries”) plays an ex-Intelligence Service officer bribing and blackmailing his way in the corridors of power.

‘PUERTA 7’ (Netflix, Pol-ka)

Polka’s first Netflix order, now in pre-production. Set against the background of Argentina’s barra brava soccer ultras, “a woman’s attempt to cut through this male-dominated world and cleanse one club of its corruption and criminal element in order to redeem her family name,” Netflix announced last July. Written by Patricio Vega, whose credits include crime-fighting commando thriller “Los Simuladores,” created by “Wild Tales’” Damián Szifrón.

‘EL TIGRE VERON’

Pol-ka taps Marcos Osorio Vidal, co-scribe of “The Bronze Garden” and “The Fragility of Bodies,” to pen the latest series in the Pol-ka, Turner, Cablevisión production alliance. Julio Chávez (“The Red Bear,” “The Custodian”) as a battling trade union leader Verón. To air on Artear’s El Trece, TNT, VOD service Cablevisión Flow.

UNTITLED POLITICAL THRILLER (El Trece, Pol-ka, Cablevision, Oficina Burman/Mediapro)

Bowing a key international alliance, written by Spain’s Humberto Ortega, a co-scribe with “La Casa de Papel’s” Alex Pina on series such as “El Barco” and “Los Serrano,” a potentially caustic presidential race thriller turning on the ethical and emotional roller-coaster ride of a presidential candidate.

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