Series Mania: ‘Hierro’ as ‘Southern Noir’ and an Industry Groundbreaker

Variety | 3/24/2019 | John Hopewell
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LILLE, France — Banijay Rights-sold “Hierro” begins with sea, land, air and fire: Shots of the stunning volcanic isle of El Hierro, the most westerly point of Spain’s Canary Islands, with its black basalt rock, brown iron-rich gravel, white waves pummeling the coast, trees trunks twisted by wind and lava, a juniper bent double by wind.

But as much as it features extraordinary nature, and starts with a murder victim in a kind of southern isle Noir, “Hierro” turns, above all, on human nature, how it clings to and is forged by custom, and the complex, contradictory, comparable and contrasting characters of Candela, an intolerably upright Spanish judge, exiled for her rectitude to El Hierro, and Diaz, a arrogant narco kingpin who’s done time for homicide. The main suspect in the murder case of the man who was about to marry his daughter, Díaz is released by Candela, going by the letter of the law. Both begin a race to track down the murderer, in what “Hierro’s” synopsis describes as a journey to ****.

Landscape - Hierro - Model - Co-production - Movistar

Remarkable in landscape, “Hierro” is ground-breaking in its industrial model, the first co-production of Telefonica-owned Movistar +, to date a 100% financier of its original series, and part of French-German broadcaster Arte’s drive into international co-production, also seen at “Series Mania” with “Eden.”

Developed by Spain’s Portocabo, and a Berlinale Drama Series Days Co-pro Series winner, “Hierro” attracted France’s Atlantique Productions, part of the Lagardère Group, and French-German broadcaster Arte. When Telefonica pay TV unit Movistar + also boarded, in its first international co-production, “Hierro” could move into production. All four partners shared IP.

Movistar - + - Hierro - June - Episodes

Movistar + will release “Hierro” on June 7, with all eight episodes of the season made available the same day. Variety interviewed producer Alfonso Blanco, writer Pepe Coira, director Jorge Coira and Tim Mutimer, head of...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Variety
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