Top Spanish indie producer-distributor Vértice 360 has teamed with Madrid-based outfit Dexiderius Producciones to produce coming-of-age thriller series “Verdugos” (“Executioners”).

Structured as a six episode mini-series in Spanish and Basque, “Executioners” has been picked as one of the 15 finalist projects selected at next month’s Series Mania Forum Co-Pro Pitching Sessions.

The mini-series is created and written by Dexiderius co-founder Pedro Ríos (“Mis adorables vecinos,” “Fuera de control”) and Rodrigo Martín (“Manos de Seda,” “Lex”). Dexiderius co-founder César Martínez and Alberto Rull, EVP production and content at Vértice 360, will produce. 

Set at the end of the summer of 1996 in a small town in Spain’s northern region of Navarre, the story follows four adventurous 12-year-old children who set out to explore an old abandoned mine.

Deep in its bowels, they discover a businessman being held prisoner by the Basque terrorist group ETA – a kidnapping that has been widely reported in the news. 

A man’s life depends on children unable to make a decision for which they are not prepared. And even less when they discover that the father of one of them is one of those involved.

Determined to save the kidnapped man’s life, they release him but the car in which they are fleeing falls into a lagoon. All the children escape unharmed but there is no trace of the businessman.

“Executioners” “was born from the idea of telling a story with a deep dramatic depth, with echoes of terrorism and great emotional dilemmas, but from a different point of view: that of 12-year-old children,” García and Martín said.

The series creators aimed to recount the passage from childhood to adolescence “using a historical and recognizable context -such as ETA- but stripping it of any political connotation, giving it an adventure halo that immediately turns into drama and thriller with enormous emotional charge.”

“It is a story which is ‘ultra-localized,’ that takes place in a small community in the north of Navarre, framed in a recognizable historical context, with some protagonists as children on their way to adolescence. All these elements make it a ‘glocal’ story with international relevance,” the producers said.

“International distribution deals are under negotiations,” they added.  

Ríos and Martín are also creators of “Demokracy,” a period crime thriller series whose production has just been approved by Spanish public broadcaster TVE.

Vértice 360, the ambitiously relaunched content division of Madrid-based conglom Squirrel Media, is headed by Spanish entrepreneur Pablo Pereiro Lage.