Show of the Week: La Zona

Beta-Film_La-Zona_©Emilio-Pereda[5]Buyers headed for MIPCOM may be interested to learn of the latest premium pay TV series from Jorge and Alberto Sánchez-Cabezudo, whom Beta Film executive Christian Gockel describes as “the Spanish Coen brothers”.

La Zona is set three years after the deadly meltdown of a Northern Spanish nuclear reactor.

With locals in mourning, an inspector who lost his son in the tragedy, Hector Uria, uncovers a smuggling racket linked to politicians in the contaminated no-go zone, just as a spate of murders begin.

The series is one of a significant number Telefonica’s Movistar+ service is launching as it attempts to build out its subscription VOD service and keep pay TV numbers up.

“The uniqueness of La Zona is that it gives the Jorge and Alberto Sánchez-Cabezudo the financial means and backing to tell a story of collective despair and political corruption from the perspective of the ordinary man and woman in the gripping guise of a serial murder investigation with overwhelming visual imagery,” says Gockel, Beta’s executive VP of international sales and acquisitions.

While the 8x50mins show centres on the damaged inspector, focus is also placed on the spiritual and mental journeys of his wife Marta and daughter Ester, and of his doctor and public health official Julia.

Germany-based Beta has worldwide rights, having found success with Spanish-language dramas such as Velvet and Grand Hotel in recent years.

Beta CEO Jan Mojto will take part in a Telefonica keynote session featuring programming chief Domingo Corral on the opening Monday of MIPCOM (October 16) in the Palais des Festivals’ Grand Auditorium at 12.05pm local time.

Later that day, Beta will host a screening of the show at 2.15pm in Auditorium K.

La Zona is the programme for pay TV channels and platforms around the world, but programmes of this kind are not only limited to pay but also interests linear free TV broadcasters, which – often for their secondary channels – are looking for fresh programmes to attract younger audiences,” says Gockel.

The show: La Zona
The producer: Jorge & Alberto Sánchez-Cabezudo
The channel: Movistar+
The distributor: Beta Film
The concept: Mystery crime drama set around the meltdown of a Spanish nuclear reactor