Sebastián and Emiliano Zurita, producers and creators of Cómo Sobrevivir Soltero (How to Survive Single) (8x30´)
Addiction House: Cómo Sobrevivir Soltero 2 exceeds in production values the first season
Aliana González, Mexico City|22 de abril de 2022
Sebastián and Emiliano Zurita, producers and creators of Cómo Sobrevivir Soltero (How to Survive Single) (8x30´), which premiered its second season on Amazon Prime on Friday April the 15th, explained that they filmed two seasons (second and third) in 114 days, with development and pre-production taking almost six months in order to achieve a series that exceeds in production values the first season. Post-production took almost a year, prioritizing season two.
Deep knowledge of the story, understanding of what worked in the first season, as well as the right timing for development, were key to achieving this goal. “We are fans of the pre and we dedicate a lot to development,” pointed out Sebastián Zurita, starring in the series and who plays an alter ego of himself. He added that thanks to the fact that the development and pre-production could be done remotely during the pandemic, it was possible to take enough time for the construction of the characters and the story.
It is a production of Campanario Entertainment and Addiction House, the production house of the Zurita brothers. The original idea is by Sebastián and Emiliano Zurita, the showrunner and the main writer is Marcos Bucay, with a team including Jaime Muñoz de Baena, Andreína Borges, Roberto Flores, Rosa Clemente García and Cynthia Fernández Trejo. Jaime Dávila, Diana Mejía-Jones, Wendy Cortez and Rico Martínez are the executive producers for Campanario, and Emiliano Zurita, Sebastián Zurita and Ricardo Gaspar de Alba Quiroz, the executive producers for Addiction House. Noe Santillán-López, Marcos Bucay, Sebastián and Emiliano Zurita are the directors of the episodes of the season.
"We have a gender-balanced group of writers of three men and three women because due to the issues we address in the story, we need the points of view of everyone," explained Sebastián Zurita.
The series was recorded in a pandemic in 2021, imposing additional complications, such as the mandatory PCR tests on the crew and the health measures protocol. “We had to get really smart about the way we shot certain scenes, because there wasn't unlimited money for post-production either, and you can't do that many tests on all the extras,” he explained. Hence the importance of focusing on pre-production in order to have everything prepared.
However, Emiliano Zurita explained that the construction from the story side was easier, because of what they had already learned during the first season. “We knew the characters very well, how they spoke, how they thought, where to head to get the most out of them, and that is transmitted in the production. I can objectively say that it has improved a lot compared to the first one, in every way: the costumes, the art, the lighting, the stories,” he commented, after pointing out that it seems this new season is a much bigger project, in every way.
In the first season, both brothers directed episode 9, and in this second one they directed episodes 4 and 7. “It was our first approach to jointly directing something on this scale and we learned a lot. I think that in this second season we dared to explore, at least from my side, a different way of directing, not only in camera movements but exploring how to tell this story from a very honest side. Jokes work because they are an everyday thing and people can identify with the situations,” said Emiliano.
The advantage of the second season is that the audience already knows the characters that can fully enter into telling the story. “What we're looking for this season is to create dramatic arcs of stories A and B for each of the characters. In addition, each character goes through a big event, so the production feels like it has much greater production values,” said Sebastián Zurita, after commenting that they took more risks with the story since there are more visual effects and post-production. For example, they filled a theater with people in the midst of a pandemic using special effects.
In addition, the second season has a significant number of cameos. “As the series explores the art world and makes fun of it, we tried to include cameos from artists of all genres. We know that from a commercial point of view it helps, because of the followers of each artist,” explained Sebastián Zurita. The incorporation of artists was justified as long as it worked for the story because the type of followers that an influencer attracts is not necessarily the one that enriches the program's audience.
“It is a different type of consumer since it moves from one story to another every five seconds. For us, what matters is that it is relevant to the story” he said, after pointing out that it is an art to work with cameos because artists are always busy with other projects and it is complex to balance available dates or visions about the project. “The mission was that it serves the purpose of the story and that they could make fun of themselves.”