Top Chilean production outfit Parox, producer for Movistar Play of “Los Prisioneros,” the series which closed this week’s Santiago Industria, has tapped crucial backing from Chile’s National TV Council for its flagship international series, “Silver Bridge” and “La Pergola de las Flores.”
Billed by Parox as a narco feminist action romance inspired by true facts, costume thriller “Silver Bridge” is also a Latin American drug trade origins saga. Set in 1952, it unspools its central lesbian love story against the background of the extraordinary true-life rise of a Chilean family of Lebanese descent, which came to be ruled by matriarch Amanda Huassaf, into the principal importer of cocaine into New York by the early 1960s.
Earlier this year, Chilean director Katherina Harder, Amanda Huassaf’s great grand-niece, was announced by Parox as attached to direct.
Executive produced by Parox founders Sergio Gándara and Leonora González as well as by Harder, “Silver Bridge” was one of the recent winners of funding from Chile’s National TV Council (CNTV), Chile’s most important TV incentive org, in its fiction category. The incentive is worth around $500,000.
A second Parox project, a series adaptation of evergreen Chilean classic musical “La Pergola de las Flores” co-produced with Con Gam, also pulled down a second subsidy for a similar amount.
“The grants are good calling cards, to attract further financing. For ‘Silver Bridge,’ it will only cover a part of the budget but it’s a good basis to begin to go out to the market looking for co-production,” Gándara told Variety.
Having world premiered “Los Prisioneros” at Iberseries Platino Industria, Parox’s next onsite market will be mid-November’s MipCancun.
Given that Chile’s National TV Council adjudicates a score of awards in each funding round but only five or so prizes in the major fiction category, the grants also send a positive sign to the industry.
Parox won National TV Council funding for “Invisible Heroes,” its breakout international co-production, González noted.
“La Pergola de las flores” weighs in as a three-part miniseries adaptation of a Chilean stage classic, a musical comedy set in 1929, but first bowed in Chile in 1960, written by Isidora Aguirre, as part of her strong line in social protest theaters plays and novels.
A love story set in 1929, the music is set against the battle by women stall holders in Santiago de Chile’s flower market to preserve the market, despite authorities’ plans for its demolition.
Parox’s miniseries adaptation will preserve the general storyline of the classic, the most staged work in Chilean history, but modernize its music, González said.