THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO’S “The Head”, produced in association with Hulu Japan and HBO Asia, is currently shooting in Tenerife

“The Head” shooting in Tenerife, photograph by Jacques Mezger

The international cast includes John Lynch, Tomohisa Yamashita, Laura Bach, Mònica López, Alexandre Willaume, Katharine O’Donnelly, John Lynch, Amelia Hoy and Mónica López, plus the special collaboration of Álvaro Morte 

The Island is currently host to the series The Head, a production by The Mediapro Studio in association with Hulu Japan and HBO Asia. It has the support of the Environment and Roads Departments of the Cabildo de Tenerife in terms of managing the shooting permissions as well as the collaboration of Turismo de Tenerife through its Tenerife Film Commission. For the shoot, that will last 50 days (from 11 July to 19 September), 40 local professionals have been hired in addition to ten companies of the island’s film sector.

The Head is the first fiction series by Àlex and David Pastor in Spain. The Canary Islands and Iceland are the locations chosen for this survival thriller directed by Jorge Dorado (El embarcadero, Mindscape). The series features an international cast that includes John Lynch (The Terror), Tomohisa Yamashita (Code Blue), ) Alexandre Willaume (Bajo la superficie, Deep State, Tomb Raider), Laura Bach (Sprinter Galore, Rita), Mònica López (Hierro, En la ciudad, El habitante incierto, Acusados), plus the special collaboration of the Spanish actor Álvaro Morte (the professor, the brain behind the ambitious assault in Money Heist). The long, dark Antarctic months, the cold, the wind and the vast extensions of ice together with the feeling of loneliness and claustrophobia are the distinctive features of this fiction, which consists of six 50-minute episodes. The plot of The Head, with dialogues in English and Danish, is set at the international station Polaris VI, on the Antarctica. A reduced group of scientists from different countries is in charge of keeping the base in operation during the long polar night. But at the height of winter, the station stops all communication with the exterior. 

The Head is mainly being shot inside two factory premises in the municipality of La Laguna. The only exterior location has been Punta del Inglés, at a singular spot in Parque Rural de Anaga. Shooting has also been made in interiors in special locations such as Auditorio de Tenerife, Finca Tristán, the Floatel Reliance platform or the Brifor unit facilities in La Guancha. In addition to the support of the Cabildo de Tenerife, the production has also enjoyed the help of the town councils of La Laguna and Santa Cruz.

The local companies hired by this international production include some of the members of Tenerife Film Commission like Blackout Films, with their postproduction and DIT services; Location One Islas Canarias and The Boss Transports, that hire shooting equipment; Archipiélago Renting, vehicle hire; Grupo Suardíaz shipping company; Riskmedia Insurance Brokers; hotel Taburiente, and the model agency Bewateragency.

“The Head” shooting in Tenerife, photograph by Jacques Mezger

The project, one of THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO’s major investments, took its first steps in 2017 at the prestigious International Series Mania Forum, held in Paris. The Head was presented at a pitching session and aroused great interest among representatives from the media and entertainment sector.

According to Javier Méndez, Chief Content Officer of THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO, “The Head is an example of the direction we’re headed in, with ambitious and complex international projects based on great stories. The Head is a major step in the Studio’s strategy to guarantee that the best stories reach our clients around the world; to do so, we have excellent partner like Hulu Japan”.

Laura Fernández Espeso, Corporate Director and CoHead of TV of THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO, commented: “The Head is the fruit of many months’ labor to meet deadlines when demand for content is huge. Having talent like Jorge Dorado and Àlex and David Pastor working from the beginning to build and shape this project, altogether with a great international cast and a prominent partner such as Hulu Japan, gives an idea of the magnitude of the project. It is a privilege for THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO to bring this amazing series to the audiovisual market”.

“After a process lasting two and half years, we at THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO are proud to bring this unique story to the screen”, explained Tellem. “’The Head’” is about Good and Evil. Our story begins when a group of people find themselves completely disconnected from the world, in the frozen darkness of the South Pole winter. For the unknown killer among them, this is the perfect setting. For everybody else, telling good from evil just might be the thing that saves your life.” 

 “In ‘The Head’, I made some contribution to the development, which is quite unusual,” director Jorge Dorado explains, “because directors normally join in at a much later stage. And this is very interesting, because this way, the story in a way becomes yours too.”

The director also emphasizes the work of THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO: “At the moment, no one else in Spain is doing projects of this magnitude and with such international ambition.”

Àlex and David, who have worked on the screenplays of “The Head”, along with Isaac Sastre, define the production as a “claustrophobic thriller with a central mystery.” “The series plays with two different times, because the idea is to find out who the murderer is, the reasons why they have done this, and if there is something else behind or beyond what seem to be a series of crimes,” they suggest.

The Pastor brothers have a brilliant track record in filmmaking with titles like “Carriers” and “The Last Days”, both written and directed by them, and “SELF/LESS”, written by them, directed by Tarsem Singh (“The Cell”) and starring Ben Kingsley and Ryan Reynolds. They made their debut in the TV world with the series “Incorporated”, for the US channel Sy Fy, produced by Pearl Street Films, which is Matt Damon’s and Ben Affleck’s company. The Pastor brothers were in charge of the screenplay and the direction of the pilot episode. Recently, they have directed the film “Hogar” for Netflix. 

THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO

The mission of THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO, the content division of the MEDIAPRO Group, is to expand the creation, production and distribution of content globally, creating high-quality international content in association with the very best Spanish and international talent, including Paolo Sorrentino, Woody Allen, Isabel Coixet, Ran Tellem, Oliver Stone, Daniel Burman, Fernando León de Aranoa, Iván Escobar, Javier Fesser, Patricio Guzmán, Borja Cobeaga, Diego San José, Marc Cistaré, Manuel Huerga, Ernesto Daranas, Gastón Duprat, Mariano Cohn, Laura Belloso, Marc Vigil, Fernando González Molina, Javier Olivares and Ruth García. THE MEDIAPRO STUDIO, with 58 offices distributed across four continents, 14 of which develop and produce content, launched 34 series in 2019 with a global investment of €200 million for the production of series, movies, entertainment programs, short-formats and documentaries. MEDIAPRO has partnered with key industry players worldwide including HBO, Netflix, Amazon, DirectTV, Fox, Viacom, Yle Turner and Disney, which have earned international acclaim winning awards including 2 Oscars, 2 Golden Globes, multiple Goya awards and two Daytime Emmy Awards.

ABOUT HULU JAPAN

Hulu Japan was originally launched in Sept 2011 by Hulu LLC and got acquired by HJ Holdings Inc, (a Nippon TV company) in April 2014. Over 2 million paying subscribers of Hulu Japan’s SVOD service have instant access to 60,000 videos, and its content line-up covers global-hit scripted series and feature films, local shows including popular dramas, animations, variety shows, documentaries, and Hulu Japan original series besides exclusive catch up and library from Nippon TV, which is the leading terrestrial network and the majority owner of HJ Holdings. Hulu Japan has been maintaining the leading position in the Japanese OTT market since its launch and is regarded as one of the most used services there. Besides Nippon TV, the shareholders include Hulu LLC, Yahoo Japan, TOHO, Yomiuri TV, and CHUKYO TV.

About HBO ASIA

Wholly owned by HBO (a subsidiary of WarnerMedia), Singapore-based HBO Asia brings the best of Hollywood to Asia first through its exclusive licensing deals with major Hollywood and independent studios, including Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios, Warner Bros., Lionsgate and DreamWorks Animation. HBO is available across 23 territories across Asia. HBO Asia has proprietary and award-winning HBO and HBO Asia Original programmes produced exclusively for HBO viewers. HBO Asia broadcasts five 24-hour commercial-free subscription movie channels: HBO, HBO Signature, HBO Family, HBO Hits and Cinemax; an Asian movie channel, Red by HBO; internet streaming platform, HBO GO; subscription video on demand (SVOD) service, HBO On Demand; and a branded SVOD service in China, 鼎级剧场 (ding ji ju chang). HBO Asia is also the exclusive distributor of BabyFirst channel in the region. Log on to www.hboasia.com for more information.

Tenerife Film Commission

Tenerife Film Commission is the brand of Turismo de Tenerife that gives advice to national and international film companies about locations, permissions, and about all the services they may require while shooting on the Island. The wide range of spaces available as well as the natural sets offered by the Island mean multiple areas of the world can be recreated within just a few kilometres. The technology and the local production companies, the incentives and tax breaks available for production companies, plus a privileged climate that allows shooting in exterior location year-round make Tenerife the ideal shooting location.

film@webtenerife.com

+34 647 346462

www.tenerifefilm.com

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