Latin American teen programming grows

Iñaki Ferreras ©RapidTVNews | 05-12-2011

Teen programs are gaining ground in Latin America, with Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Uruguay and Mexico leading the way.

In Argentina, content aimed at teenage audiences forms the basis of broadcast TV with production companies such as RGB and the Cris Morena Group producing several top rated shows, such as 'Rebelde Way' ( Channel 9, 2002), 'Floricienta' (Artear, 2004), 'Chiquititas' (Telefe, 2006) or 'Casi Angeles' (Telefe, 2007). Dori Media and Endemol Argentina are also leading exponents of content production for this demographic.
Shows made for kids and teens are also very successful in Brazil where competition among programs is very tough. Network Record has recorded several hits in 2011, including the local adaptation of Rebelde—awarded for Best Show, Best Actress and Girl of the Year at 2011’s Nick Awards in Brazil. Network Bandeirantes company also produced a leading teen-series named 'Julie e os Fantasmas'.
In the Chilean TV panorama there are also several home-grown examples of the phenomena with 'El Último Pasajero' was adapted for TVN, later to be moved to Channel 13, and the Chilevision network aired productions such as 'Vampiras'.
As for Mexico, the Argentine version of 'Rebelde Way', produced by Televisa in Mexico, managed to engage its target audience and led to several other adaptations in different countries. The company is also taking a bet with a talent show set to air on Sundays during primetime on Televisa's Canal de las Estrellas network, which is very popular both in and outside of Mexico. The show is called 'Pequeños Gigantes', a talent show in which a jury must select the best team of kids.
Such shows have been a staple part of Mexican TV for years, such is the case of 'Chiquilladas' and 'Juguemos a cantar', which aired back in the eighties. In addition, Televisa will up the ante by signing a deal to co-produce 'Miss XV ' alongside Nickelodeon.
In Peru Frecuencia Latina is raising the stakes with El Último Pasajero, a show by Endemol Argentina which originally aired on Artear at 7:00 PM. It was adapted by GV Productions, and it presents several groups of senior high school students competing against each other to win a trip for the end of the school-year. The format has been adapted for Chile, Venezuela and Brazil.
One of the year's most ambitious projects is Uruguayan production for Channel 10, 'Dance'. A significant investment was necessary to produce the show -in comparison to what's usually spent in Uruguayan TV-, which included building a complex 1,000 square metre set and hiring a crew of 180 people. Telemundo Internacional distributed the show internationally and presented it at the last MIPCOM.