La Ley del Mar, starring Luis Tosar and Blanca Portillo, will open the Festival on 6th October and will be followed by up to 45 series from 10 countries to be screened during the week.
This morning, in Madrid’s Sala Berlanga, the contents of the first edition of South International Series Festival were presented. This festival was created to bring together in Cádiz the series fans and the audiovisual industry from the 6th to the 12th October. The programme includes around 100 activities for audiovisual industry professionals and 62 screenings of series in different formats.
The presentation was hosted by the festival director, Joan Álvarez, and included the participation of the Andalusian Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport, Arturo Bernal, and the mayor of Cadiz, Bruno García. This launch was also attended by institutional representatives of the festival collaborators, whom Álvarez thanked for their commitment and support to the audiovisual industry. Figures such as Emilia Garrido, Director of Cultural Activities of the Unicaja Foundation; Carlos Rosado, President of the Spanish Film Commission; and Elizabeth López, Audiovisual Director of the SGAE, participated in this event.
Contents of the first edition
From a selection of half a thousand titles from various countries, South’s Selection Committee has chosen 45 series that will be the protagonists of the Official Section and will be distributed in five different sections. In addition, there will be presentations in various formats, such as previews and screenings, adding up to more than 60 titles, including both fiction and non-fiction productions.
Official Section – Fiction
La Ley del Mar (Spain, produced by Studio60, RTVE and A punt). Based on a true story, this series portrays the story of a boat from Santa Pola called ‘Francisco y Catalina’: the first European fishing boat that in 2006 rescued 51 sub-Saharan immigrants adrift in international waters in the Mediterranean, a hundred miles from Malta. Starring Luis Tosar and Blanca Portillo, the series is directed by Alberto Ruiz Rojo and written by Tatiana Rodríguez and Víctor Pedreira.
Nolly (UK, produced by Quay Street Productions, PBS Masterpiece in association with ITV Studios). Created by Russell T. Davies, Nolly explores the rise and fall of Noele Gordon, an actress and presenter who became one of Britain’s most famous women, played by Helena Bonham-Carter. It is directed by Peter Hoar, who was nominated for an Emmy for directing The Last of Us.
Entrevías (Spain, produced by Mediaset España and Alea Media). Cádiz will premiere the third season of Entrevías, which returns to prime time on Telecinco after its run on South Series.
Carthago (Israel, produced by 24 Draft Studios) is an Israeli historical drama and war thriller set in 1942, chronicling the uprising of Jews in Palestine against the British. Written by Reshef Levi, Tome Shani and Yannets Levi, the series stars Uri Gov, Philip Glenister and Carolina Jurczak, among others. Their performances were honoured with a special acting award at Cannes.
Galgos (Spain, Movistar Plus+ original series produced by Buendia Studios). Fictional series directed by Félix Viscarret and Nelly Reguera that narrates the business and family drama of the Somarriba family and the Galgo Group, the food giant run by three generations. The series features an ensemble cast that includes Adriana Ozores, Oscar Martínez, Marcel Borràs, Patricia López Arnaiz and María Pedraza.
Of Money and Blood (France, produced by Curiosa Films for Canal + France) arrives in Cádiz after the Venice Biennale. It is based on the book of the same name by Fabrice Arfi, ‘D’argent et de sang’, about one of the biggest scandals in recent French history: the millionaire carbon tax fraud.
Serrines, madera de actor (Spain, produced by Mediaset España and Producciones Mandarina), a comedy starring Antonio Resines that tells the story of a veteran actor who decides to break away from the fiction that has made him popular in search of what he has not yet achieved in his career: the role that will establish him in the eyes of the critics.
Power Play (Norway, produced by Motlys, Novemberfilm – a Fremantle Label), which won Best Series and Best Music Composition at Cannes, will have its first episode premiere in Spain. It is a comedy set in the 1970s that plays with the conventions of period television, docudrama and political satire.
Beguinas (Spain, produced by Atresmedia TV in collaboration with Buendía Studios), a new series inspired by the Beguinatos, communities of women who, since the 13th century, have defended an alternative way of life, independent of marriage and the Church. It stars Jon González and Amaia Aberasturi, with script by Irene Rodríguez, Esther Morales, Silvia Arribas and Virginia Llera. Directed by Rómulo Aguillaume and Claudia Pinto.
Anima Gemella (Italy, produced by Endemol Shine Italy and RTI), a gripping story of love, loss and mystery starring Daniele Liotti and Chiara Mastalli and directed by Francesco Miccichè.
Monstrous (South Korea, produced by Studio Dragon, Climax Studio and TV ING), a story inspired by a traditional Korean legend, with an original screenplay by Yeon Sang-ho (Train to Busan, Peninsula) and Yong-Jae Ryoo and directed by Jang Kun-jae. This series will be screened for the first time in Spain, in response to growing public interest in Korean fiction.
Official Section – Non-fiction
Malaya. Operación secreta (Spain, produced by RTVE in collaboration with Atlantia Media), presented at Malaga Film Festival, reveals unpublished details of the Malaya Case, the largest operation against political and town-planning corruption ever carried out in Spain and one of the most media-savvy court cases in recent years.
Bretón, La mirada del diablo (Spain, produced by Cibeles productions in co-production with RTVA) deals with the terrible case of the murder of two children in Córdoba, which shocked public opinion.
Macarena (Spain, produced by Movistar Plus+ and Producciones del Barrio) aims to highlight the importance of the international hit of the same name by Los del Río on the occasion of its 30th anniversary.
The Murdochs: Empire of Influence (United States, produced by CNN Original Series), which explores the legacy of media mogul Rupert Murdoch.
Los Galindos (Spain, produced by Mediaset España and Fénix Media) sheds light on five of the most gruesome and inexplicable crimes in Spain’s black history, which took place at the Los Galindos farmhouse in the 1970s.
En guardia: mujeres contra el crimen (Spain, produced by Mediaset España and En Cero Coma, A Freemantle Label), a thriller about some of the most media-savvy, complex and fascinating cases investigated and solved by the elite female investigators of the Guardia Civil.
El enigma Nadiuska (Spain, produced by Atresmedia TV in collaboration with Lavinia Audiovisual), the mysterious story of Nadiuska, the greatest Spanish star of the first films to liberalise nudity and a sex symbol in the 70s, who had it all and ended up in oblivion.
The Chevaline Killings: Finding the Missing Piece (France, produced by Upside Television), which successfully takes on a difficult challenge: to look back at a terrible massacre in France in 2012, still unsolved today.
The Man Who Stole the Scream (UK, produced by Curve Story), a British docu-series produced by Asif Kapadia, tells the story of the 1994 theft of one of history’s most iconic paintings, Edvard Munch’s The Scream, and how, after an international investigation, only one person was convicted: former professional footballer Pål Enger.
The end of the South Series coincides with the next big event to be held in Cadiz: Sail GP. The festival will create synergies with the sailing competition, which will take place the following week and will premiere a new episode of its Sail GP series. Los gallos despegan (UK, produced by SailGP and P1 Entertainment). The series follows the Spanish team in the fourth season of the championship, showing the ins and outs of the competition and its protagonists on and off the water.
South Series will give a second chance to series that are unknown to the general public, that have already been released and that deserve to be watched. With television audiences in mind, the Palacio de Congresos in Cádiz will be showing an episode of Halt and Catch Fire (United States), a technological drama that tells the story of the birth of the computer and Internet era in the 1980s, an era of cultural, social and economic change. Lola (Spain), the “definitive portrait of the life of an unforgettable artist”, will also be screened. The Spanish documentary examines the career and life of Lola Flores through 44 interviews with family members, friends, journalists, researchers and contemporary artists.
Peace peace now now (Chile), a docu-series that tells the stories of brave and determined women who have faced armed conflict in Colombia, Chile, Guatemala and Mexico, will screen its fourth episode, directed by Isabel Coixet. Estreno notte (Italy), a biopic about politician Aldo Moro, leader of the Christian Democrats, his kidnapping and assassination in Italy in the late 1970s.
Sul (Portugal) follows a series of police investigations led by a nihilistic judicial police inspector, complicated by the severe economic and social crisis prevailing in his country . Finally, The Bear (United States), a comedy-drama that was nominated for 13 Emmy Awards in its first season and has just finished its second season.
Andalusia, protagonist of South Series
In addition to offering a varied natural and cultural backdrop that is increasingly attracting major international blockbusters, the Andalusian audiovisual sector has experienced exponential growth in recent years, both in terms of its professionals and its industrial fabric. For this reason, the region will play a special role in this first edition, both in terms of its programming and the spaces reserved for industry professionals. There will be more than twenty activities showcasing the talent and industry of the Andalusian audiovisual sector, with a special focus on the new coming series that are still in the pipeline and the jewels of the audiovisual sector, which will be brought together in the ‘In the South’ section.
The selection of series to be screened in Cádiz includes: the documentary series 548 días. Captada por una secta, produced by Olmo Figueredo and José Ortuño; the animation series Pobre diablo, directed by Manuel Sicilia; the fiction production Grasa, by David Saiz; and Canal Sur will present 13 días, directed and written by Hernán Zin. Cádiz will also show ‘Mazey Day’, the episode of the acclaimed international series Black Mirror, filmed in Andalusia with the services of Fresco Films; as well as the web series Desde el fondo by Joaquín Perles.
Cñadiz is the venue chosen by the distributors of Atlantica, The Discovery of Atlantis, a co-production between the United States and the United Kingdom that follows seven years of research to find the exact location of Atlantis. Meticulous scientific work, more than forty dives and a series of comprehensive underwater scans led to the discovery of the city mentioned by Plato in his stories. Produced by Ingenio Films and Merlin Burrows.
This year, South Series is paying special attention to Africa. Among the special screenings programmed in the Panorama section is Ololade (Nigeria), a drama filmed in Yoruba language that tells the story of two friends, a high school teacher at his worst and a bon-vivant car mechanic, who make money in a mysterious way. Cádiz audiences will be able to discover a new window on the African continent, while the industry professionals will have the opportunity to do business with a thriving audiovisual industry, with which they will be able to interact during the Industry Activities.
Two Spanish series complete this section: La red púrpura, the new Atresmedia original series directed by Paco Cabezas and adapted from the second novel of the same name in the Carmen Mola saga. It is produced by Paramount Televisión International Studios, with the participation of Atresmedia Televisión and in collaboration with Diagonal (Banijay Iberia). And the second season of Ser o no ser, which continues with its bright and naturalistic approach to portraying the different realities of young teenagers. In its first season, the series won the Prix Italia 2022, the ODA for the best Spanish fiction of the year and was nominated for the GLAAD. It is a Playz original production in collaboration with BING BANG MEDIA (The Mediapro Studios), starring Ander Puig.
In addition to all these premieres and previews of series that will be available on the main channels and platforms in the 2023-24 season, South Series will host previews of series that are currently being shot, such as the second season of El inmortal, En busca de Cortés and El Marqués, a new fiction from Mediaset España. There will also be screenings of projects in the early stages of production.