SkyShowtime’s Spanish Content Has “Resonated Globally,” Top Exec Says 5

SkyShowtime‘s Spanish content has “resonated globally,” its chief content officer Kai Finke said on Thursday.

Speaking at the international market and networking event Conecta Fiction & Entertainment in Toledo, Spain, on Thursday, Finke pinpointed the successes his company has faced in recent years with their projects in Spain. Two of the most recent originals include Bosé and Los Enviados, produced by Paramount, and comedy series Por H o Por B. But the team are particularly excited about an upcoming program called Mamen Mayo, a mockumentary series that combines dark comedy with family drama. Each episode follows inheritance mediator Mamen Mayo and her law firm.

“The package seemed really compelling,” Finke said when asked about what drew SkyShowtime to the show. “We’ve looked at the script and the treatment. It’s a production company we know will deliver… It feels like a show that will be really complimentary to our programming slate. What we’re looking for in projects is they need to feel complimentary to our global slate. And we are working on a lot more projects as we speak and you can expect a lot of local language commissions from SkyShowtime in Spain.”

Finke said there is a “huge demand” for Spanish storiesm but did not want to compare the output to that of the U.S. or U.K. for the European streamer. More than 20 markets are served by the joint venture of Comcast and Paramount Global. “For us, a title is about how it’s likely to be doing in the country of origin because we are operating in 20+ countries. And we just know that there is demand for local audiences — what feels familiar.”

The executive echoes a similar sentiment to Disney and Amazon, whose producers in Toledo have all emphasized the desire for real stories for local audiences: “We’ve understood that in order to operate successfully as a streaming service across our pan-regional European footprint, it is also key to speak to our local audiences and engage with them in terms of the viewing preferences,” Finke continued. “It’s something we want to do and something we’re really doing more of: local programming.”

With what feels like a slowdown in global production, Finke said streamers must face realism. SkyShowtime is “definitely interested” in co-production projects where the bill can be split, but IP also helps, he explains. Mamen Mayo is an original idea that is going to be “very commercial.”

The company is also celebrating the return of shows. At a time when Hollywood is cancelling programs, SkyShowtime has brought back Frasier and Yellowstone. “It’s great news,” Finke says. “We are continuing to build an incredible slate of returning shows.”

And sports is certainly not off the table for the business. Coming up is a project execs are hoping will perform well titled Schmeichel, following the life and career of decorated Danish soccer goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel. “Sports personality documentaries are super attractive and super interesting for us,” Finke explains. “Peter Schmeichel used to be one of my childhood heroes. He is a really interesting personality. He is currently Denmark’s number one goalkeeper and it makes for a great universe of his whole biography that he has.”

In Toledo so far, quite a high proportion of streaming bosses have spoken about Latin America’s love of true crime. The demand for crime shows has boomed since the pandemic, and SkyShowtime is “definitely” taking that into account going forward. “We are providing a lot of choice for consumers,” Finke says at the end of his keynote session. “We’ve driven such an attractive content pipeline, we are priced very attractively, so we believe we very much have a seat at the table.”

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