Claudia Costafreda on ‘Dressed in Blue’ Success, Netflix’s Upcoming ‘Superestar’ and Making Her Feature Debut Under Los Javis’s Suma Content

Spanish writer and director Claudia Costafreda is on a roll

Published Time: 14.05.2024 - 13:31:25 Modified Time: 14.05.2024 - 13:31:25

Spanish writer and director Claudia Costafreda is on a roll. “Cardo” and “Veneno” have both been selected asVariety’s best international TV shows in their respective years and went on to find great success domestically and internationally, the latter landing distribution deals with major streamers such as HBO Max. Costafreda’s latest collaboration with long-term creative partners Los Javis, “La Mesías,” premiered to great acclaim at the Sundance Film Festival last January, and the trio is already working on their next project together, Netflix’s “Superestar.”

A sequel to “Veneno,” “Dressed in Blue: Veneno Season 2” premiered last year and followed in the footsteps of its predecessor in terms of international success, with Atresmedia TV International Sales closing deals across Europe, Africa and the Americas. Costafreda is a writer and director on the show.

“Dressed in Blue” begins two years after “Veneno,” with Lola Rodríguez’s Valeria returning to Valencia to discover a VHS copy of Antonio Giménez Rico’s pioneering doc feature, “Dressed in Blue,” which world premiered at the 1983 San Sebastián Festival. This sends Valeria into a frenzied research for the original figures featured in the documentary, much like real-life journalist Valeria Vegas, who inspired the series.

Speaking toVarietyabout the success of “Dressed in Blue” on the heels of its showcase at the Berlinale Series Market, Costafreda said it can be “delicate” to so prominently address issues of themes of gender, queerness and prejudice with a series like “Dressed in Blue.”

“These are issues that had not been advocated or made visible until now. We have received praise, especially from people who had not seen themselves represented before. Telling their stories is a step towards a more just society. In my case, it has been crucial as a woman beyond being an author. Trans women are women, and we all need to support and stand by each other. The sisterhood that emerges from being involved in these projects is an invaluable human value.”

Commenting on how the series resonated with young audiences while looking back at a generation that came before them, Costafreda said t -

hat the past and the present “cannot be explained without the other.” “We analyze and create characters, placing them all on the same level. This allows us to complement and seek similarities between the experiences of trans women today and where they come from. Unfortunately, in many cases, the reality is not so different.”

Writing a show with so many characters and storylines is a “complex” mission, according to Costafreda, who says it is also “rewarding because there are many elements and numerous themes to play with.” The success of “Dressed in Blue” confirmed the writer’s assumption that there is a loyal audience base keen to follow the stories of the characters they first met in “Veneno.” “The truth is, coming from ‘Veneno’ we had good feelings about how the reception of this second season was going to be. In the end, there is an audience that awaits to see how everything continues.”

“It’s been almost five years working together,” emphasized Costafreda of her collaboration with Javier Ambrossi and Javier Calvo, the Spanish creative duo who go by Los Javis and founders of Madrid-based production company Suma Content.

“We are a family. We share the same tastes and the same approach to the profession. It’s beautiful to see the path we are on together and how we are growing hand in hand, from ‘Veneno’ to ‘Cardo’ and now ‘Superestar.’ I also felt very close to ‘La Mesías.’ I am where I need to be, a place where originality, depth and quality prevail.”

As for what’s next, Costafreda is looking forward to developing her first feature film. “I would love to be able to combine movies and series in my career. Currently, I am focused on the filming of ‘Superestar,’ but as soon as it finishes, I will fully dive into working on my film.” The director’s first feature will be, of course, produced by Los Javis’s Suma Content.

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