Keshet International has sold Prisoners Of War, the Israeli format upon which Showtime’s Homeland is based, to Televisa in Mexico. The deal will see a Spanish-language version of the show broadcast in Mexico (Televisa) and Colombia. while Univision also will hold rights for the U.S. Hispanic market to air the show on its sister channel, Unimas. A big order for 70 episodes based on Prisoners Of War (original title: Hatufim) Seasons 1 and 2 will be produced and adapted by Productions RTI Colombia. This adds to Keshet format sales of Prisoners Of War in such markets as South Korea, Russia, Turkey and the States. The finished show also has sold to more than 20 territories. Prisoners Of War was created, written and directed by Gideon Raff. The original show follows two soldiers as they attempt to re-adjust to their lives after returning home from 17 years of captivity. In addition to their personal struggles, it becomes clear that there is a profound secret that the two are keeping from everyone else.
Nina Etspueler has rejoined Red Arrow Entertainment Group as a Senior Creative Producer. She previously was with the group until December 2012. In her new role, Etspueler will focus on identifying and developing TV formats together with Red Arrow’s creative teams and be responsible for consulting with internal and external partners on the group’s rollout of global IP and productions. She started with Red Arrow in 1999 as a producer in the talk show genre. She switched to the entertainment field in 2002 and was responsible for numerous comedy formats including Elton Vs. Simon and Comedystreet XXL. Following her prior stint at Red Arrow, Etspueler moved to Berlin to serve as a producer for the award-winning ProSieben format Circus HalliGalli.
The Doha Film Institute has identified the recipients of its spring 2014 grants. Twenty-one projects from 14 countries – made up of 12 narrative feature films, six feature documentaries, two short films and a web series – will receive funding for development, production or postproduction. Of the projects, 12 are from the MENA region, seven are from the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee list of countries, and two are from the rest of the world. The MENA region accounted for 160 of the total applications. The program is focused on identifying new cinematic talent, with a focus on first- and second-time filmmakers. Among the 21 projects selected for funding is first-time feature filmmaker Kaan Müjdeci’s Sivas, a Turkish-German film that tells the story of the relationship between an 11-year-old boy and a weathered fighting dog. It won the Special Jury Prize at this year’s Venice Film Festival. The funding slate also includes Speed Sisters, Palestine-based, Lebanese-Canadian filmmaker Amber Fares’ first feature, about the first all-woman race-car driving team in the Middle East, and True Love Story, the first animated feature from India’s Gitanjali Rao, an in-depth look at Bollywood and the passion and fervor it inspires among its fans. Notably, 10 of the 21 projects are directed by women. A full list of the grantees can be found here.
Colombian retail leader Grupo Éxito, together with ecological organization Ecoplanet Foundation and production company Off The Fence, have begun principal photography on feature documentary Colombia: Wild Magic. Helmed by writer-director Mike Slee (Flight Of The Butterflies 3D, Bugs! 3D, David Attenborough’s Life On Earth), the project will celebrate Colombia’s unique biodiversity by showing the country as it has never been seen before and serve as a call to action to help preserve the country’s rich yet fragile ecosystems.