HBO Europe is adding to its growing Spanish slate with Por H o por B (Whatever, English working title), an original comedy written and directed by Manuela Burló Moreno (Rumbos, Cómo sobrevivir a una despedida).
The 10×30-minute series expands on the lives of the characters from Burló Moreno’s Goya-nominated short film Pipas, with Marta Martín and Saida Benzal reprising their roles as Hache and Belén, respectively. The series is produced by Lacoproductora and Globomedia for HBO Europe. Shooting has started in Madrid, with Brays Efe, Itziar Castro, Javier Bódalo and Fernando Albizu also joining the cast.
The series follows as childhood friends Hache and Belén are reunited when they both find themselves living in a trendy Madrid neighborhood that proves a far cry from where they grew up on the city’s outskirts. The show sees them navigate their friendship and the new world they’re now a part of.
Por H o Por B is the latest Spanish original for HBO Europe, following the adaptation of Fernando Aramburu’s best-selling novel Patria; Isabel Coixet’s Foodie Love; Alex de la Iglesia’s 30 Coins; and the nonfiction series El Pionero (The Pioneer), which are all currently in production.
Burló Moreno said: “Por H o por B shows the reality of that extra layer we all wear to try to fulfill our sense of belonging, although we all know that the best thing is to be our true selves. The series is about the search and need to belong, and the thin line between what’s cool and what’s not. All this through the main character’s eyes, two girls from Parla who will do their best to survive in the most hipster neighborhood of the capital.”
Miguel Salvat, commissioning editor of original programming for HBO España, said: “In Por H o por B we’re diving into the culture of appearances, ephemeral trends, and things that confound us daily that we don’t dare to question. It’s a story of two fish out of water, culture clashes, being awkward—or not caring about being awkward—about identity and the need to belong. Manuela has lived many of the situations we will see. She knows what she’s talking about and how to tell this story. There are many Malasañas around the world. Por H o por B is universal and local at the same time. A fresh new voice is arriving to HBO.”
Antony Root, executive VP of programming and production for HBO Europe, added: “We’re excited to have Manuela bring her original perspective and vision for this series to HBO Europe. In Por H o por B she’s created a comedy and characters that will be recognizable and relatable for our audiences both in Spain and beyond. It’s the perfect addition to our burgeoning Spanish originals slate which boasts an incredible range of local voices and a broad mix of genres—we’re confident audiences of all tastes will have a favorite amongst them.”