Jan Motjo’s Beta Group is making a bold bet on Spain, both its content and market, launching Beta Fiction Spain, a TV-movie production house which will also offer production services in Spain and run a theatrical distribution operation.
The new entity will be headed by two of the best-known and reputed film-TV execs in Spain: Mercedes Gamero, the former head of Atresmedia Cine, the film production-acquisition arm of Atresmedia Cine, and one of the most powerful movie producers in Spain; and Pablo Nogueroles, the former SVP at Warner Bros. Pictures International España. Both will head Beta Fiction Spain together with Christian Gockel, responsible for all Beta Group’s Spanish activities.
First projects or buys from Beta Fiction Spain have yet to be announced. The launch comes, however, as Spain is consolidating as an international power in a new platform driven environment – eight of the Top 10 non-English language TV shows and movies released on Netflix are Spanish. Spain has also notched up its biggest presence in years at both the Berlinale and Cannes Festival.
From “Grand Hotel” and “Velvet” through to Movistar Plus Originals such as “The Pier” and “Perfect Life,” the first three made with Atresmedia, Beta Film has proved hugely successful selling Spanish series abroad, Gockel noted to Variety.
Spain had a need for more strong independent distribution companies, and both Gamero and Nogueroles have built up excellent talent relations over the years, he added.
First projects to be announced may well be films since they are simply far faster to develop, said Gockel.
Beta Fiction Spain will join another Spanish subsidiary of Beta Group, Beta Entertainment Spain, headed by Javier Pérez de Silva, which focuses on creating and adapting international unscripted entertainment formats.
“I am so thrilled and excited to join this new company with such wonderful partners as Pablo Nogueroles and Beta. Having the chance to establish an independent production and distribution powerhouse is a unique opportunity in this current environment,” said Gamero.
Nogueroles added: “The Spanish market is undergoing tremendous changes just like the rest of the world. We feel we have an opportunity to be a first-in-class independent European distributor and producer of theatrical films as well as a co-producer for local movies and TV shows.”
Both Gamero and Nogueroles are executives who go the extra mile to support or create ambitious tiles coming out of Spain.
Chosen for Variety’s International Women’s Impact Report, Gamero’s film production credits at Atresmedia include smart social-issue thriller such as “Marshland” and international animation features such as “Klaus” and “Futbolín.”
One of the most proactive of Hollywood studio managers in Spain as general manager of Warner Bros. Pictures International España since 2006 and its SVP since 2017, Nogueroles was before that a highly vocal member of its exhibition community, working at Yelmo Cineplex, a joint venture between Sony/Loews Cineplex and Yelmo Cines, where he served as director of marketing and business development.