Thursday, May 17, 2018

Viacom Revamps Latin American Production Division [Updated]

Viacom is set to adapt a number of Alfred Hitchcock movies into television series in Latin America, partner with Italy's Rainbow Group for a brand-new Nickelodeon Latinoamérica series, and is on the verge of selling two Portuguese-language originals to major SVOD players as it ramps up its content strategy in the region.

Club 57

The company is officially launching Viacom International Studios, which brings together its Latin production divisions including Telefe’s studios, Brazilian comedy unit Porta dos Fundos and Viacom’s own branded production unit, at the LA Screenings later this week.

The Latin arm of the U.S. media giant is ramping up its production strategy as it looks to take on the likes of Mexico’s Televisa. Pierluigi Gazzolo, President, Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) Americas, told Deadline, “We want to become one of the largest Latin America content providers.” The company is looking to produce around 1,000 hours of original content across the newly rebranded unit by the end of this year and over the next few years it wants to have close to 2,000 hours of content, including formats and scripts, that it can sell around the world.

The move comes after Viacom acquired Argentinean broadcaster and producer Telefe in 2016 for $345m. While Telefe previously produced a raft of programming in its own market, it didn’t exploit this and rarely owned international rights. It has now taken control of these global rights to allow it to monetize them around the world. “The disruption of the last five years, the way that we think of content, is changing drastically so we need to take advantage of that because we own our content. We have the ability to move that content in any form we want,” said Gazzolo.

Viacom International Studios has four priorities. Firstly, it is looking to produce original content for its own networks as well as striking co-productions, such as its latest deal between Nickelodeon and Rainbow Group (Winx Club, Regal Academy, Mia and me, Maggie & Bianca Fashion Friends) in Italy for Club 57, a 60-part time-travelling musical series about a science-loving girl who accidentally travels back to 1957.

Set to start filming this summer, Rainbow Group will retain the rights to Club 57 in Italy and represent the IP for consumer products globally, whilst Viacom International Studios will handle distribution of the property for the rest world of the world.

It is also looking to produce original content for third-party broadcasters and is on the brink of closing two landmark deals for long-form content from Brazilian comedy producer Porta dos Fundos. It is negotiating deals with SVOD players for Borges, a show about an import export company that turns into a YouTube channel, and Homens, a Sex and the City-style show for men. Both series will be produced in Portuguese but the company is also working on Spanish-language versions as well as English-language versions for its own Comedy Central channels.

There will also be a renewed focus on formats, particularly looking to strike remake deals for 100 Days To Fall In Love, a scripted telenovela about two women who take a temporary break from their husbands to go party. The 80-part show, which was created by Sebastián Ortega, became the most watched show in Argentina earlier this year with a 50% share.

It could even be remade on some of Viacom’s international networks such as Channel 5 in the UK, Colors in India or Paramount TV in the U.S. after the group set up a General Entertainment Council to share ideas. The U.S network is already working on a multi-lingual Nazi thriller, Cazadores (Hunters), written by Narcos’ Jason George.

Viacom International Studios is also looking to see what Viacom-owned formats from around the world that it could reversion in Latin America. It is currently working with Paramount to adapt a number of Alfred Hitchcock movies into Spanish-language TV series. Paramount Pictures produced Hitchcock features including Rear Window and Vertigo.

On the movie front, VIS has closed a deal with Fox Networks Latin America for Animal, Telefe’s latest cinematic production, written and directed by Academy Award winning screenwriter Armando Bo. The thriller follows Antonio, a man with a perfect life, a beautiful wife, a good job and a bright future, until he finds out he needs something almost nobody is willing to give away.

Additionally, VIMN Americas has announced that Colombian channel Caracol Televisión has inked a deal for Nickelodeon Latinoamérica's popular tween telenovela Vikki RPM! Inspired by Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet love story, the series (60 episodes) takes place at a racetrack and follows two kart racers who fall in love despite their families' rivalry.

Formally titled Formula A, Vikki RPM made its debut on Nickelodeon Latinoamérica on Monday 31st July 2017 and on Nickelodeon Brazil (Brasil) on Monday 18th September 2017, and made its European debut on TeenNick Italia in December 2017. The series also recently started to air on Nickelodeon Teen France and Nickelodeon Iberia in April 2018.

From TBI Vision:

VIMN Americas unveils distribution and copro deals

Viacom International Media Networks Americas has revealed a number of distribution deals for its original content with leading SVOD, Pay TV and FTA broadcasters via newly-expanded production and distribution division, Viacom International Studios (VIS).

Among the deals, Fox Networks Latin America has acquired the rights to Animal, a thriller from VIMN Americas’ Argentine broadcaster Telefe. Elsewhere, Colombian channel Caracol Televisión has inked a deal for 60-episode tween telenovela Vikki RPM, a new take on the classic Romeo and Juliet love story that takes place at a racetrack.

In other deals, Netflix in Latin America has picked up a co-production between VIMN Americas-owned Porta dos Fundos and Comedy Central about a failed import/export company that tries to restructure into an internet video production business to satisfy its debts.

There is also a co-production agreement between Nickelodeon and Rainbow Group in Italy for Club 57, a time-travelling musical series about a science-loving girl who accidently travels back to 1957.

Pierluigi Gazzolo [...], president, VIMN Americas said: “Since combining our production and sales forces last year, our focus has been on creating the highest-quality Spanish and Portuguese language content and expanding our distribution beyond Latin America, making the new Viacom International Studios a true global player in Latin American original content. These partnerships are testament to the power of our brands and strength of our original productions.”


Also, from todotvnews:

Viacom International Studios cierra acuerdos de producción para LatAm e Italia

En el marco de LA Screenings, la compañía dio a conocer acuerdos de distribución y producción para sus formatos originales con socios SVOD, TV paga y TV abierta, a través de su reciente división de producción y distribución.

"Desde que combinamos nuestros equipos de producción y ventas el año pasado después de las adquisiciones de Telefe y Porta Dos Fundos, nuestro objetivo ha sido crear contenido de la más alta calidad en español y portugués, y expandir nuestra distribución más allá de América Latina, posicionado a Viacom International Studios como uno de los principales jugadores en el mundo de contenido original latinoamericano", aseguró Pierluigi Gazzolo, Presidente, VIMN Américas.

El ejecutivo anunció hoy acuerdos de distribución para sus formatos originales con varios socios SVOD, TV paga y TV abierta a través de su reciente división de producción y distribución, Viacom International Studios (VIS).

La división ahora incluye las producciones originales de Viacom en Latinoamérica para marcas globales como Nickelodeon, MTV y Comedy Central, y cientos de horas de contenido original de Telefe y Porta Dos Fundos.

"Con más de una década produciendo contenido original exitoso para las marcas de Viacom y la experiencia y el contenido ofrecido mediante nuestra adquisición de Telefe e inversión en Porta dos Fundos, estamos creciendo el alcance de nuestro producto y base de clientes con principales clientes de tv paga y tv abierta y otros socios alrededor del mundo. Estas asociaciones son pruebas del poder de nuestras marcas y producciones originales", añadió.

Entre los acuerdos se destaca la coproducción entre Nickelodeon y Rainbow Group en Italia para Club 57, un musical de 60 episodios, que comenzará a grabarse este verano; Rainbow Group se quedará con los derechos en Italia y representará la propiedad para productos de consumo a nivel global, mientras que VIS manejará su distribución en el resto del mundo.

Se suma la adquisición por parte de Fox Networks Latin America de Animal -reciente producción cinematográfica de Telefe- para distribuir en sus múltiples plataformas lineales y no lineales en todos los países de habla hispana en Latinoamérica.

Asimismo, la serie Borges, primera coproducción de Viacom International Studios de una serie de formato largo entre Porta dos Fundos y Comedy Central, que estará disponible para los suscriptores de Netflix en Latinoamérica.

Por otra parte, Caracol Televisión cerró un acuerdo para la telenovela, Vikki RPM, una versión moderna de la historia de amor de Romeo y Julieta, serie de 60 episodios que se transmitirá en Colombia este año.

Aparte de producir para las marcas de la empresa, Viacom International Studios también producirá contenido para terceros en una variedad de formatos incluyendo producciones y coproducciones originales, así como también en formatos existentes que puedan ser adaptados en otros idiomas y latas.

Luego de unir sus equipos de ventas el año pasado, VIMN Américas ha incrementado la distribución global de las producciones y los formatos originales de Telefe y Porta dos Fundos; Sres. Papis fue vendida a más de 20 países en Latinoamérica, Europa y el Medio Oriente, y Amar Después de Amar también tuvo una distribución global extensiva y su formato fue vendido en más de 20 países en Europa y el Medio Oriente.


More Nick: Nickelodeon Latin America & Mediapro Partner For New eSports-Themed Scripted Series 'N00Bees'!

Originally published: Wednesday, May 16, 2018.

Additional source: Google Translate.
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