Fans of magical realism rejoice. On Wednesday, Netflix announced it acquired the rights to Gabriel García Márquez’s “One Hundred Years of Solitude” and will be turning the literary masterpiece into a Spanish-language series.
This is the first time the 1967 novel, considered “one of the most significant works of the 20th Century,” will be adapted for screen. For years, the author, who died in 2014, refused to sell the film rights, believing the story could not be done justice through a two-hour project, according to Deadline.
Rodrigo Garcia and Gonzalo García Barcha, García Márquez’s sons, who are serving as executive producers on the show, believe a series is an appropriate approach to the book.
“For decades, our father was reluctant to sell the film rights to Cien Años de Soledad. He believed that it could not be made under the time constraints of a feature film, or that producing it in a language other than Spanish would not do it justice,” Rodrigo Garcia told BuzzFeed News, adding that the “current golden age of series,” with “the level of talented writing and directing, the cinematic quality of content,” changed the family’s mind.
“The time could not be better to bring an adaptation to the extraordinary global viewership that Netflix provides,” he continued.
The series will be filmed in Colombia.
“One Hundred Years of Solitude” tells the story of the multi-generational Buendia family, whose patriarch Jose Arcadio Buendia founded Macondo, a fictional town in the South American country.
The book has sold more than 50 million copies and has been translated into 46 languages.
In a statement, Francisco Ramos, Netflix’s vice president of Spanish-language content, said, “We know our members around the world love watching Spanish-language films and series and we feel this will be a perfect match of project and our platform.”
He’s right. Since announcing the adaptation, fans of the magical realism novel have been celebrating the news.
There’s no word yet on when the series will debut and who will star in it.
Up Next is a FIERCE series highlighting rising Latina and Latin American women artists you might not know about but definitely should.
If you’ve been waiting for the return of Latin pop bands, let me introduce you to Rombai.
Originally formed in 2013, the vivacious cumbia group, known for bringing Gen-Z fun and flair to the classic genre, went through a series of changes in members before breaking out again last year. After an international social media contest to find two new members, Uruguayan band leader Fer Vazquez is now accompanied by Bolivian Megumy “Megu” Bowles and Colombian Valeriana “Vale” Emiliani, and the three have been cooking up poppy bops that blend the ritmos and sabor of their homelands.
“We believe we are totally different from what is in the market,” Megu told FIERCE. “I think we are all very open-minded to new sounds and are not afraid to experiment,” Vale added.
The band’s first single “Me Voy,” a candied, mid-tempo song about leaving a toxic relationship, proves that Megu’s sensual vox and Vale’s honey-sweet hooks are the perfect mix for Fer’s own charming vocals. The hit already has more than 63 million views on YouTube, and international fans, many attending Rombai’s introductory Latin American tour last year, are hungry for more.
We chatted with the ladies of Rombai about what life has been like since joining the rising band last year, what they each bring to the group, the fun and learning that comes with being an international trio and what’s in store for the group this year.
FIERCE: Rombai formed in 2013. But, since then, there have been a lot of changes. You two joined the group most recently. When and how were you both brought into Rombai?
Rombai: We entered Rombai through a casting that was done on Instagram this past 2018. Sony Music and Walter Kolm, the manager of Rombai, did this in order to find the new members of Rombai. Girls from all over the world uploaded covers with the hashtag #Rombai2018. Thank God, we were selected and now we are here fulfilling our dream.
FIERCE: What do you think you bring to Rombai that’s fresh and exciting?
Megu: Much of my culture and flavor, and I hear that I also bring a lot of sensuality.
Vale: Flavor and diversity. Everything about us, even our accents, are totally different.
FIERCE: Absolutely! As you said, what’s great now is that there is a blend of cultures. Vale is Colombian, Megu is Bolivian and Fer is Uruguayan. What do you think this brings to Rombai’s style?
Megu: We believe we are totally different from what is in the market. I am from Bolivia, but I have been in the US for many years. So I love R&B, I love a lot of Anglo music.
Vale: I love our music, Latino genres, tropical sounds, African rhythms, reggae, and if we combine this with all the years of experience Fer has with cumbia, look at the beautiful mix we get.
FIERCE: How do you think these different styles influence Rombai’s cumbia-pop sound?
Megu: I believe that each one of us brings our own flavor, and it’s from our cultures. We are very different, but at the same time, we are very similar. Sometimes, it is amazing to see how different and similar we can be. I am definitely the most “gringa,” but we like that because I bring new music ideas like R&B that they love.
Vale: I grew up listening to a lot of African rhythms, Colombian porro, cumbia. I think we are all very open-minded to new sounds and are not afraid to experiment.
FIERCE: What’s cool about being in a group, especially one with men and women, is that you can share different perspectives in one song. We see this in one of your first singles together “Me Voy.” How do you ensure everyone’s voices and perspectives are included in a way that still flows musically when you’re songwriting?
Rombai: It is a double-edged sword. Whenever we write, we think of the three. It is good to have three people, but sometimes it is also difficult. The good thing is that we know our voices, so we know what parts are left to each one before we enter the studio to record. Above all, communication is important. In Rombai, you can not miss that.
FIERCE: In the chorus for “Me Voy,” which you both sing, you say, “Me voy acostumbrando a estar sola / Así estoy mejor, así estoy mejor.” What are some things you are able to do alone that you might not be able to do when you are in a relationship?
Megu: It’s a big difference to be in a relationship versus being single. It also depends on the person you are with. For example, now that we are traveling a lot, it is very difficult to have a relationship. I wouldn’t be able to hang out and party with friends, and I do not like having to give explanations. Right now, I’m happy single.
Vale: When you are single, you can do many more things without giving explanations. But I really think that the song speaks of a toxic relationship, one that’s not well, one where both partners are tired of hurting each other and prefer to be alone.
FIERCE: Totally! And it’s important to make that distinction. You all just had your first promotion tour in Latin America, going to Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Peru and Colombia. What was that like?
Megu: Honestly, it was incredible. I returned to my country after seven years of not having stepped foot on my land, and I returned fulfilling my dream. I am very proud of myself. It was so great to learn different cultures. There were times that I couldn’t even believe it.
Vale: For me, it was very exciting. I did not know any of these countries, yet I could feel the love of all the fans that were already part of Rombai years ago. Just the fact that I’m working in the music industry and traveling and meeting so many people, I am really fulfilling my dream.
FIERCE: I know you all were working on a lot of music last year. What can you tell us is in store for Rombai in 2019?
Megu: UFF! Truthfully, there’s a lot of celebration and joy to come. We want to incorporate new sounds, but, above all, have fun, that’ll always be a part of Rombai.
Vale: It’s important for us to never lose our essence, what makes us different, and continue to cover new countries. We continue to search every day for new sounds for all our fans.
FIERCE: You are both so young, at the start of your careers, what do you hope people can say about Rombai in about 10 to 15 years?
Megu: What I would like you to say about Rombai is, “Wow, Rombai broke it! What young fighters, who worked so hard to bring their music to different countries.” Also, “what beautiful women and what a sexy man!” Haha!
Vale: That they’re a band that made a difference, left a nice message and brought cumbia to international recognition! There’s still a lot left to do.
The documentary, which won the “Festival Favorite Award” at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival — beating out 121 other films to land the highest number of audience votes — allegedly cost Netflix $10 million. According to TechCrunch, if this price tag is correct, it’s the most expensive Sundance documentary deal of all time.
“Knock Down the House,” which raised money via a Kickstarter campaign last year, was produced by New York’s Jubilee Films. The movie follows the campaigns of Las Vegas businesswoman Amy Vilela, Saint Louis nurse Cori Bush, West Virginian coal miner’s daughter Paula Jean Swearengin and Ocasio-Cortez. The women were all first-time candidates who gained attention for taking on powerful incumbents in an effort to create systemic change. Of them, only Ocasio-Cortez made it to Washington.
“It is a transcendent moment when skilled filmmakers are able to train their lens on a major transformation,” Lisa Nishimura, VP of Original Documentaries for Netflix, said in a statement. “With intimacy and immediacy, [filmmakers] Rachel Lears and Robin Blotnik, bring viewers to the front lines of a movement, as four women find their voice, their power and their purpose, allowing all of us to witness the promise of true democracy in action.”
There is no word yet on when the film will hit Netflix.