Camila Jimenez Villa, President and CCO FMG
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Authenticity and “El Chapo”

By Camila Jimenez Villa, President and CCO FMG

Sep 5, 2017

When we launched Story House Entertainment in 2016, our goal was simple: to create great entertainment that drives young America to watch and talk. Our dramatic series following the rise and fall of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman allowed us to do just that.

Season 1 aired April 23 – May 21, 2017 every Sunday night on Univision Network. It focused on the early stages of El Chapo building his empire and ended with his arrest, setting “the myth” in motion. Season 2 premieres September 17, and will kick off with his infamous first escape from prison and chronicle his rise to the top of the Sinaloa Cartel.

Here’s some of what we’ve seen so far as we’ve brought the series to life:

Creating content for young America demands great storytelling. Nothing is more authentic than working directly with the organization with unparalleled access to the El Chapo story, Univision News. Our news department has covered El Chapo extensively through the years much to the fascination of our audience, and because of that collaboration we’ve been able to blend fact and fiction in a way that tells a compelling story and feels true to life. Young America did tune in – live – for season 1. We saw audiences 17 years younger and nearly twice as much live viewing than other Sunday-night, English-language dramas during the season one run.

Authenticity is also about who tells the story. We had another major goal when we launched Story House and that was to give more opportunities to storytellers from diverse backgrounds. Silvana Aguirre Zegarra, our showrunner, is an extraordinary writer/director with more than 15 years of experience across TV and film; the team that she put together was comprised of accomplished writers and filmmakers from all over Latin America who were keen to prove that a Spanish-language show could catch the attention of the world. Creating inclusivity behind the camera is something we strive for in all our projects. We know that, ultimately, what makes it to screen will be a better product.

El Chapo’s story engages a broad audience. And this is precisely why we’re choosing to air Season 2 with English-language subtitles — a Univision Network first. In fact, season one saw that nearly half of the English-language dominant adults that tuned in hadn’t watched Univision Prime in the prior four weeks. It’s also why Netflix joined us as co-producers on the project and carries the series globally after its run on Univision. After the Netflix premiere, we saw more positive sentiment for El Chapo vs. other Spanish-language broadcast narco dramas – proof that these audiences respond to captivating stories inspired by real life events.

The 12-episode second season of El Chapo premieres Sunday, September 17 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on Univision Network. Season three will air early next year.

Sources:  Nielsen NPM, NPMH Live +7 Sunday 8-10pm 4/23-5/21/17. Historical time period based on the previous 4 weeks 3/26-4/16/17. Duplication based on 6+ minutes; Social Media: El Chapo TV Monitor – Crimson Hexagon. Region: US + PR, México, All; Languages: English; Analysis Period: March-July 2017. Benchmarks: Sysomos Map – Analysis Worldwide during Series Air Dates

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“El Chapo” Season One Finale Scores Winning Numbers for Univision, Reaching 3.5 Million Total Viewers 2+

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The Chase for “El Chapo” Continues as Original Series Returns to Univision Network Sunday, September 17

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