Alex Balassa: Production companies like ours offer great solutions, at better costs and with diverse resources that are seen on the screen

Big platforms should be using the services of smaller independent production companies
02 de junio de 2021

Alex Balassa, executive producer and director of Balassa Films and Blindspot called for large platforms to use the services of smaller independent production companies that have a track record, during an interview on #PRODUprimetime with Ríchard Izarra.

“Production companies like ours offer great solutions, at better costs and with diverse resources that are seen on the screen. We are happy and very open to offering our production services in Mexico for all these great productions that are coming up,” said Balassa, who has 30 years of experience in the field, including the 11 years he spent as a partner and right-hand man of the well-known producer and Mexican director, Pedro Torres, producing fictional content such as Mujeres Asesinas and other successful titles of various genres.

He also invoked other producers to make synergy. “I have always believed in win-win and in the value of synergy. My father taught me that one plus one is five, not two, not three, not four. Five! And this is what is done in large co-productions. We want to make synergies with other large producers that are looking to make synergies with companies like ours; We have contacts in Europe, the US, and Latin America to be able to set up projects,” he said.

He made both calls with the certainty of being able to fulfill what was being offered in services and had the ability to associate seamlessly with other producers to carry out projects in both Spanish and English. “I think that bilingual co-productions are going to have more and more power. Anglo-Saxon countries are seeking to partner with Latino companies and that is where we are putting the focus, on creating those synergies with Latin American countries to have many more resources and more powerful content, with greater production values, and with stories about universal characters.”

And it's safe and accurate because he and his team, especially his wife - producer and his right-hand man-, Marisol Mijares (“We are together almost 23 hours a day”), have already proven themselves. When it comes to production services with Blindspot, founded in 2009, there is a long list of companies they have served. Likewise, another extensive list of content that they have developed, alone or in co-production, including the film La Gran Promesa ("... a beautiful co-production made in Germany, the United States, and Mexico ..."), or the services provided to Discovery Kids for producing 52 episodes of the Alex & Alux musical series during last year and this year. “With Marcel Vinay, from Comarex, we have made synergy in recent years with two of our specific projects. They have been allies as distributors and co-producers.”

Balassa Films is the firm that develops content and the owner of the IPs of the projects, which multiplied during the pandemic. “The pandemic hit us very hard, but it was also extraordinary for projects. We needed time for development and we couldn't have it, because we didn't stop producing. But when we were suddenly forced to stay at home, it was the perfect time for development. We had a slate of six projects that became twenty; of those, thirteen are already available, that is, they have already been offered on different platforms and channels, negotiating their entry. I think that the gift that the pandemic gave us was being able to stop the acceleration of the life of production and be able to go deep into the content and say: this is what we want to work on. We have projects for sitcoms, science fiction, a children's series, an animated series, a factual series, a fiction feature film, a wonderful and extraordinary thriller series, two-period series, and three comedy series that are already placed on three possible channels, in the process of evaluating the closure of the agreement.”

As they had more time due to the pandemic, they also incorporated into the Writers' room several writers with 30 to 40 years of experience making content for TV and cinema who “have done a lot of coverage of all our projects and taking them to the next level, in the dramatic arc and structure; they have been designed in a way that might not have been done so well in the day-to-day hustle and bustle of the pre-pandemic.”

“Today with Balassa Films we have signed co-productions to develop in Europe, Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Spain. We have a co-production in Chile of a film called Querida Esther, and we have signed with 360 Powwow in the United States another project by Daniel Gutman, Adrián Santucho, and Leo Lavazza, with whom we have been doing a production service for a year regarding a very nice musical for children, but that stopped with the pandemic... We are starting a new comedy series called Soy Pepper, with José Eduardo Derbez, about an influencer who, after having millions of followers, loses them all and does not know how he is going to get them back and he does whatever it takes to try to retrieve them.

Watch the complete interview here