John Pollak, Co-Founder and Co-Owner of Allied Management Group
Allied Management Group: Including Latino storytellers to our team was always part of our DNA
Maribel Ramos-Weiner|29 de julio de 2022
John Pollak, Co-Founder and Co-Owner of Allied Management Group, who descends from a Mexican family originally from Michoacán, grew up "Americanized" with limited contact with his roots. But when he joined the world of entertainment, working alongside Ben Silverman in Reveille and Ugly Betty, he began connecting with Latino storytellers.
“Including Latino storytellers to our team was always important. It was part of our DNA, but the industry wasn't really ready for it yet. I continued to work with Ben on Jane the Virgin and then found my way to NBC. I wanted to make it a priority to feature Latino voices, Latino storytellers. And I was able to do it, I began to connect with other Latino executives in Hollywood, telling them that we needed to be more aligned and to work together," he said.
Pollak began putting together a group of Latino executives with whom he had worked and they put him in touch with Latino directors, creators and writers who needed connections in Hollywood.
“I began doing it informally and helping people set up projects. We sold a show to a streamer, and another to a studio, we hired a director for a big documentary, and all of a sudden I realized there was a business here. That there was an opportunity to do more than helping. And that's when we decided to get the business started with Wilmer Valderrama, who believed in the mission of involving Latino storytellers. And that was the whole motivation behind launching the company: to focus on the great Latinos, creators, storytellers, and sitting them at the same table with the buyers that we've been with for the last 20 years,” explained Pollak.
Now there are several new clients and agreements that are in the process of closing in the next few days.
Dhana Media, owned by Mari Urdaneta and Liliana Moyano, is one of the companies with which the Allied Management Group works most closely, developing a relationship of partners rather than clients. “I want to underline that they are partners. We wouldn't have launched this company if it wasn't for the media partnership they provide. We work together with clients” he pointed out.
Among the trends in the market, Pollak the most important is that the stories that come from Latino storytellers need to be authentic. “It needs to be the kind of content that people can relate to when watching it at home. It has to be something they recognize. But I also think what buyers are looking for, in particular, is a great narrative that happens to come from Latinos or about Latinos,” he said.
He added that streaming platforms have helped fuel Latino storytellers. “Streamers knew there was an underserved market. Telling Latino-focused stories to Latinos was an incredibly important strategy for those streamers. And I think they all realized that and have placed Latino storytelling as an important and high-priority that it is today,” he concluded.