Striking an upbeat note as Conecta Fiction hit full stride on its second day of proceedings, ViacomCBS Intl. Studios (VIS) announced on Wednesday that it has returned to production in Latin America, rolling in Mexico on season two of “Backdoor, Humor Where You Don’t Expect It.”
A YouTube phenomenon which VIS describes as one of the most popular and shared Spanish-language comedy brands on social media, “Backdoor’s” second season will soon be made available on Latin America’s Comedy Central, owned by ViacomCBS, and on Amazon Prime Video in Latin America. Both companies aired “Backdoor’s” season one.
Season two will be made up of 20 half-hour episodes featuring a variety of comedy sketches.
Launched in Mexico in April 2019 as a Mexican version of Brazilian online comedy channel Porta dos Fundos, in which Viacom acquired a majority stake in 2017, “Backdoor” has rapidly run up 3.7 million followers on social media and nearly 320 million video views on YouTube. Sketches combine Mexican versions of Porta dos Fundos originals and original creations. Many have proved far more irreverent and racier than traditional Mexican humor, such as breakout hits “Pene Bueno” and “Marihuana.”
Often set at one location and involving a limited number of actors, sketches are an appropriate first title for a production restart. More VIS show look to restart production shortly.
“The start of filming for this new season of ‘Backdoor’ in Mexico marks the return to production after the situation we have experienced these past few months,” said Federico Cuervo, senior vice president and head of ViacomCBS International Studios Americas in a written statement.
He added: “We have used this time to focus on the development of new content, establish strict health and safety protocols, and adapt production models to protect everyone. We are very excited about the return to production, with this project and others, and with the general outlook for the industry.”
Given the COVID-19 crisis, “productions which were shooting had to stop, others which were due to start did not, so we are now picking up once more on these productions” Cuervo said in a Conecta Fiction keynote, predicting to Prensario Internacional’s Fabricio Ferrara that the last four months of 2020 would be “very, very active with lots of productions to begin.”
VIS has established “production bubbles” for some productions, and is adapting health and safety protocols to national regulations across Latin America, Cuervo added.
The coronavirus crisis has allowed creators to think more about what ideas and stores they want to tell, head argued. “Upcoming stories will be much more creative and attractive. There will be a resurgence,” Cuervo predicted.
As the COVID-19 crisis underscored, “audiences are multiplying,” Cuervo said. “We have a great opportunity as an industry to continue capturing this rise.”