Television Business International

Latin Media Leaders: Venevision Productions, Eva Luna

BEST TELENOVELA

EVA LUNA, VENEVISION PRODUCTIONS

Venevision’s Eva Luna is the most successful telenovela ever produced in the US. Having been a huge hit for Univision, Venevision sold it around the world in 2012 including to broadcasters in countries as diverse as China, Poland, Italy and Kenya. Venevision Productions’ president and CEO Peter Tinoco talks to TBI about the hit show.

 

How did the project come about?

This project began as do all telenovelas at Venevision Productions, analysing different stories, both ones we own as those owned by others, as well as projects still being developed by our writers. In the specific case of Eva Luna, the novela belonged to our exclusive writers [Leonardo Padron], but it did not belong to us; therefore we bought the rights to make an adaptation.

Subsequently the usual process continued down the line of all our productions for Univision in which they evaluate the different projects and select those they consider best fits into their programming line-up.

 

How did Venevision start working with Univision Studios?

Since purchasing an interest in Univision in 1992, the Cisneros Group of Companies, along with its production companies in the US and Venezuela, has remained a programming partner, even after selling its share in 2007. Consequently, from its commencement in December of 2009, Univision Studios has worked closely with our US-based production company, Venevision Productions, and Eva Luna was the initial project to be produced as a result of this particular collaboration.

 

Why has the show has been such an international success?

Eva Luna is one of these ‘classic’ telenovelas that are true to the genre. It’s a rags to riches story where viewers are captivated by the storylines and sub-plots and are rooting the underdog, in this case, the struggling leading lady.

 

Are there certain countries where the show has performed best?

There’s no doubt that the broadcast in the United States was a phenomenal success, some daily transmissions even beat out all of the US network in the general market; not to mention that it’s grand finale was watched by more than 9 million viewers. Eva Luna remains the highest rated telenovela to be produced in the United States.

Its success was continued in the majority of the [international] Spanish-speaking markets as all shared significant ratings and market share, including Spain, where it was broadcast by Television Española.

The success in the Spanish-speaking world catapulted the novela into non-traditional markets and territories, especially in Eastern Europe and more recently in Asia, where a new special edition of the telenovela is currently being marketed. It has already been sold in China, Japan, and Vietnam.

 

How do you view the currently global market for telenovelas?

The telenovela genre has definitely secured its place in the global market. The demand has only increased, and in stronger global markets, we are even expanding our reach by commercialising the scripts of our novelas for their adaptation for local productions.

 

There have been twists and trends added to the famous ‘formula’ of the classic telenovela, and we have seen productions that incorporate more action, suspense, mystery, even some biographical elements; yet the main essence of a novela, the love story, and its scheme remain true to the genre.

 

LATIN MEDIA LEADERS 2012/13

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT: ENRIQUE R. MARTINEZ, DISCOVERY LAT-AM

MOST SUCCESSFUL US HISPANIC EXECUTIVE: CESAR CONDE, UNIVISION

MOST INFLUENTIAL INTERNATIONAL EXECUTIVE: HERNAN LOPEZ, FOX

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: PEDRO LEDA, LEADFILMS

MOST INFLUENTIAL PRODUCTION COMPANY: DANIEL GUTMAN, POWWOW

BEST TELENOVELA: EVA LUNA

BEST FORMAT: CAIGA QUIEN CAIGA, EYEWORKS CUATRO CABEZAS

BEST DOCUMENTARY: EXTREME PLANET, GLOBO TV

BEST FORMAT: CAIGA QUIEN CAIGA, EYEWORKS CUATRO CABEZAS

DIGITAL INNOVATOR: HBO LATIN AMERICA

BEST SCRIPTED FORMAT: TERMINALES