Advertisement

‘Elite’ Producer Zeta Studios, Wattpad Webtoon Studios Ink Latin America First-Look Deal (EXCLUSIVE)

MIAMI — In a potentially powerful alliance, Spain’s Zeta Studios, producer of Netflix megahit “Elite,” has signed to develop Latin American Spanish-language webnovels from Wattpad Webtoon Studios, the online publisher via Webtoon of web novel “Through My Window.” Its movie makeover ranks as Netflix’s fourth most-viewed non-English film ever.

Both companies will also partner on projects in Spain on a first priority non-exclusive basis, they announced Tuesday, just before first panel sessions at the second edition of Content America, the Miami TV market and forum.

More from Variety

The pact marks another key step in Zeta Studios’ expansion in Latin America. In its first major corporate move, in June 2023, Madrid-based Zeta Studios, also producer of HBO Max banner title “García!,” named Marcelo Tamburri, one of Latin America’s preeminent TV execs, to the newly-created position of director of international content.

The ex-Warner Bros. Discovery exec remains based in Mexico City, Spanish-speaking Latin America’s biggest production hub.

With “Elite,” Zeta Studios proved its ability to produce a teen drama-thriller avidly consumed around the world, and with a sense of melodrama which is the default option of most fiction in Latin America. The Wattpad Webtoon Studios now opens up its vaults to Zeta Studios, one of Spain’s still ambitious international studios.

Wattpad’s Spanish-speaking authors include Flor M. Salvador, Alex Mírez and author teensspirit whose respective webnovels “Boulevard,” (99 million reads), “Perfectos Mentirosos” (130 million reads) and “Mala Influencia” (44 million reads) are all now in development for TV and film adaptations with Wattpad Webtoon Studios.

“Agreements like this help us to strengthen our presence in the audiovisual market both in Spain and Latin America and reinforce Zeta Studios’ position in the current scene”, said Antonio Asensio, president of Zeta Studios.

He added: “We’re thrilled to partner with Wattpad Webtoon Studios, as their platforms encourage reading and allow us to discover new talent, not only as writers but also as generators of audiovisual content.”

“Amplifying and adapting the Spanish-language content from Wattpad has always been a priority for us,” said Aron Levitz, President of Wattpad Webtoon Studios. “There are massive fandoms for these stories across the Hispanic world, and we’re excited to continue working with Zeta Studios, who have a fantastic creative team and a keen understanding of the market.”

Wattpad Webtoon was formed following the 2021 combination of Wattpad, the Canada-based online story platform, and Webtoon, an online webcomics company owned by Naver, the Korean tech giant. It has struck production deals with Fremantle, Leone Film Group (Italy), Mediawan (France), Leonine (Germany) and Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial.

Best of Variety

Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.