Jane the Novela, from the creative team of Jane the Virgin, was written by Jane scribe Valentina Garza and directed by Brad Silberling. It was not a traditional spin-off but was a soapy, telenovela-inspired anthology series in the tradition of Jane the Virgin, where each season is based on a different fictional novel “written by” Jane Villanueva and narrated by the author herself. Jane the Virgin creator/exec producer Jennie Snyder Urman, star Gina Rodriguez, and exec producers Ben Silverman also executive produced.
The CW president Mark Pedowitz said, “We are big fans of Jennie Urman and Gina and we had great appreciation of what they did. In this particular situation, this spin-off didn’t quite get to where we wanted to get to. We have reached out to Jennie and if she wishes we are very interested in pursuing a potential another spinoff for Jennie. It’s in her court.”
Pedowitz, speaking on The CW’s press upfronts call, added that Jane The Novela didn’t have the “same quirkiness and fun” as the original show. “This particular project did not have what Jane had,” he added.
The pilot was headlined by Jacqueline Grace Lopez and narrated and executive produced by Jane the Virgin star Gina Rodriguez. Remy Hii (Marco Polo) was set as the male co-lead alongside Hunter Parrish. Jane The Virgin co-star Ivonne Coll was also set to star along with Benito Martinez (The Shield) and Holland Roden (Teen Wolf).
The show takes place at the intersection of Napa Valley wine country and the San Francisco art scene and pairs family secrets and sins of the past with twists, tropes and a bloody bottle of red. It centers on Estela (Lopez), an up-and-coming art curator who has spent years playing it safe and coloring within the lines. But a shocking secret changes everything and forces her to live a double life.
It too follows a driven, imaginative twentysomething Latina woman (Lopez) who is torn between her boyfriend, Luen (Hii), and Felix (Parrish), a handsome, rich guy. In this case, Luen is head of security while Felix is in the wine business vs. Jane Villanueva’s cop boyfriend Michael and love interest Rafael, a hotel heir. Hii’s Luen is Estela’s sweet, dependable, long-term boyfriend. When the life he’s planned for himself and Estela is threatened by Felix, Luen will stop at nothing to win back the woman he loves.