MADRID — Ran Tellem (“Homeland,” “The Paradise”), Daniel Burman (“Lost Embrace,” “Edha”) and Javier Olivares (“The Department of Time,” “Isabel”) will tutor or lecture at this year’s first Master’s Degree in Creative Writing and Screenplays, launched by Spain’s Mediapro Group and Madrid’s Complutense University.
Steered by one of Europe’s biggest international fiction creation forces with offices in 35 countries around the world, the initiative will be echoed in one form or another by many of the most forward-looking companies in a new high-end drama series age. That’s because it gives a longterm structural answer to the era’s greatest challenge: Accessing extraordinary writing talent.
Olivares, Tellem and Burman, all of whom hold positions at the Mediapro Group, will be joined by other key showrunners and writers such as Ivan Escobar (“Vis-a-vis,” “Kamikaze”) and Javier Calvo and Javier Ambrosia (“La Llamada,” “Paquita Salas”) which have helped establish Spain as one of the major international production hubs for high-end drama series productions watched over the globe.
Launching its first course over 2019-20, Mediapro’s Master’s Degree will be divided into three areas – TV, cinema, digital. Students will be able to benefit from internships at Mediapro’s 20-plus productions unspooling over the world.
“Mediapro is looking for story creators and tellers which know how to trap spectators from the pilot to final episode in TV and in cinema, and via new digital windows and formats,” Mediapro said in a press statement Thursday.
It added: “The aim is to create a new generation of storytellers which can take Spanish fiction to all the world via Mediapro’s 53 offices in 35 countries.”
The Master’s Degree picks up on an historic initiative launched by Globomedia, now part of the Mediapro Group, which for 13 years ran a Screenplay Master’s Degree at Madrid’s King Juan Carlos University.
“As a group which is committed to talent and people, we’re delighted to be able to contribute to the training of new creative talent, placing at their disposal our experience and our productions,” said Laura Fernandez Espeso, Mediapro head of international content, who has spearheaded the Master’s Degree project.
The initiative comes at a propitious time, she argued: “Fiction is experiencing its best moment. Never have more projects of such quality been produced. But for those levels to be maintained, we have the ensure the best of education for new creators.”
“The content industry is all about telling stories that impact and grab viewers around the world, and I feel very proud to be able to help and form young writers. It is necessary to give opportunities to new talent with fresh ideas and help them become the writers of the upcoming drama hits,” said Tellem, Mediapro head of international content development.
Launched in 1994, and making its reputation producing films by Woody Allen (“Midnight in Paris”), Roman Polanski (“Carnage”), Isabel Coixet (“The Secret Life of Words”) and Fernando León (“Mondays in the Sun”), Mediapro has moved forcefully into high-end drama series production this decade. Its series and film production partners take in Netflix (“Edha,” “Bomb Scared”), Amazon Prime Video (“Six Dreams,” “All or Nothing: Manchester City”), DirecTV Latin America (“Todo por el juego”), Fox Networks Group (“Vis-a vis”), TNT Spain (“Vota Juan”) and Viacom Intl. Media Networks Americas (“Noobees”).
The Mediapro Group’s contents division is currently partnering with HBO (“The New Pope”), Finnish public broadcaster YLE (“The Paradise”), Turner Latin America (a strategic alliance) and Disney Media Distribution Latin America (“Cazadores de Milagros”). Mediapro announced separate production deals with Vice Studios Latam and Pol-ka Producciones at October’s Mipcom market.