Previously in class we’ve talked about the lack of Latin American representation in media, and how the representation of Latin Americans that exists is often stereotypical and harmful (with most roles being maids or gang members). However, according to this article, that seems to be changing. While the article mostly focuses on global trends, it also highlights American companies like Netflix, HBO, Fox, Disney, Sony Pictures, and Time Warner Cable.
The article claims that the uptick in content being produced by and for Latin American countries is due in part to the success of Netflix which confirmed that they will be producing fifty original Latin American productions through 2018 alone. Another factor they mention is investments from other countries, demonstrating interest in Latin American television. Personally I think this is due to Netflix and other worldwide streaming networks that have the opportunity to show different types of content to people that may not otherwise be introduced to them, causing a rise in popularity and interest. Another reason is that as local TV companies are getting involved, causing healthy competition between networks, which in turn leads to competition and more improved content.
Due to this competition between companies, local TV networks in Latin America are producing their own content rather than just distributing the content of others. Since this gives viewers an alternative, companies like Sony, Fox, and Disney are forced to diversify and appeal more to their audience. HBO is developing talk shows in Mexico and Brazil, while Sony is producing seven series in Colombia and Mexico. With local TV networks diversifying and producing new content, networks like TNT are now distributing Latin American made content, creating partnerships that were unthinkable a few years ago. Another positive effect of competition is the rising quality of the content being produced. According to network representatives, until about 60 years ago the only shows produced in Latin America were telenovelas, and to compete, writers and directors have to change their style to better appeal to American and worldwide audiences, which very few writers and directors have experience with.