The Pier, MIPCOM’s Tuesday World Premiere Screening, comes with great expectations; the crew’s last project, Money Heist, is Netflix’s most-watched non-English series. Actor Alvaro Morte and creators Alex Pina & Esther Martinez Lobato answered questions via Twitter today – then a few from us too – before presenting their new Movistar+/Beta Film show in the Grand Auditorium this evening. Here they are!
@struckbycolfer : how different is Alvaro Morte’s The Pier character from his Money Heist character?
Alvaro Morte: Oscar is different in every way. Every project needs a specific way to approach the character, the way you work their personality. He’s a guy whose love is divided between two women; Oscar is a bad good guy; El Profesor is a good bad guy!
@kingcros : can we expect a big improvement thinking about the visual concept Money Heist for season 3? I know they have more time and budget to make it even more spectacular…
Alvaro Morte: I was afraid to open up the story again, as it was pretty much closed (at the end of season 2). But now I’ve read the script, I’m sure it’s going to be a success.
@LacasadepapelC : Is it the first time you die in a series or film?
Alvaro Morte: It’s not my first death, but it’s the first time I start a project by being dead. It gives you lots of options in terms of plot and performance.
@Tefnetka : How did @AlvaroMorte prepare for his role of Oscar? Was there any particular challenge ?
Alvaro Morte: It was difficult to get into Oscar’s emotional hurricane. I talked a lot with Jesus Colmenar, the director, about it. With this kind of team, you have to jump in at the deep end with closed eyes; but you have to trust them; you know it’s going to be great!
@d_nqd : Are we watch the movie in Middle East ?#MIPCOMThePier or in Netflix?
(the team opted to answer this question with the angle of these Spanish shows’ international appeal)
Alvaro Morte: we had no idea Money Heist would be such a huge success worldwide. We hope the same thing for The Pier. You never know!
Alex Pina: Money Heist was a once in a lifetime experience in terms of global appeal! All our series talk about emotions, and emotions are universal, and that’s the appeal of the show.
@mnclubian : Can you tell us about your experience filming in La Albufera, Valencia?
Esther Martinez Lobato: We wanted to have the feeling of summer, and open up in terms of spaces after the confined nature of Money Heist.
Alvaro Morte: the landscape there is changing all the time, like within a relationship…
MIPBlog: How would you adapt a show like Money Heist or The Pier for a market like the US?
Alex Pina: There was an internal debate at Netflix about it, but it didn’t make sense, because they would have had two divisions (US and international) working against each other. But maybe it would make sense to make a specific version for a very different culture, like Korea or India.
Esther Lobato Martinez: In The Pier, it’s very linked to Christian and Western culture, to prejudices and morals. It questions the taming of the human soul. And in other cultures, leading a double life is more or less accepted
Alvaro Morte: the church tells us you have to love one person and that’s it. The question the series asks is: why can’t you have two or even three loves?
MIPBlog: The Pier has already been bought by TF1. What do French and Spanish audiences have in common?
Alex Pina: France is way ahead of Spain (when it comes to leading a double life)! That said, in Spain, when we talked to people about it, we found it was more common than we thought.
Esther Lobato Martinez: The female characters’ plotlines are very strong too, so it’s not just about the love triangle! It’s great that more and more series have strong female leads. It’s been a battle of ours for several years. With The Pier, we even had men come up to us and say they’d been moved by the female characters.
MIPBlog: Do you now have more freedom as a creator today compared with 5 or 10 years ago?
Alex Pina: Before, producers found writers. Now writers have more strength, as they can pitch projects more directly. I’ve always been very independent, despite working for a big company.
MIPBlog: Anything to add…?
Alvaro Morte: With The Pier, I was afraid of playing a polyamourous character! You start as a man (Oscar) who’s cheating on his wife, so he’s going to go to hell! But that’s part of the challenge. Let’s see him, hear what happened, see what’s happened in his life to get hime there. So you see episodes from the wife’s point of view, but you don’t immediately make the connection. It was very difficult to perform this guy, starting from cheating on his wife. So how can we forget that, start working from another point of view and make the audience understand him without sending him straight to hell? That was the challenge.