Sunday, January 10, 2016

Starz Developing Latino Series 'Pour Vida' Set in East L.A.

Starz Chief Executive Officer Chris Albrecht announced at Friday's Starz Television Critics Association (TCA) presentation at The Langham Huntington in Pasadena, Calif. that Starz is developing "Pour Vida," a series inspired by a short story by Richard Villegas, Jr. ("I [Heart] Babylon," "La Música Romántica"). Big Beach TV will produce with Marc Turtletaub (Little Miss Sunshine, Sunshine Cleaning, Safety Not Guaranteed), Dan Pasternack ("Portlandia," "Starved," "Beggars and Choosers") and Erin Keating ("Portlandia," "Bunk," "The Spoils of Babylon") executive producing.

"Pour Vida" follows twin sisters, Brook and Lyn Hernandez, who inherit an East LA building from their recently deceased aunt who raised them. They open Pour Vida, a new wine and tapas bar, in a building in Boyle Heights which houses a failing lesbian bar below and a village-like collection of Eastside denizens in three units above. Pour Vida is the sisters' attempt to put the "gente" in the "gentefication" of the historic barrio. They find themselves the only thing protecting the tenants from displacement, their aunt's legacy from erasure, and their neighborhood from the Great White Bridge about to bring jalapeño chicken hummus wraps to the 'hood. Brook and Lyn discover upon returning to East LA that they didn't just inherit a building - they inherited a pueblo. For Life.

"Marc Turtletaub, Dan Pasternack and Erin Keating, along with our partners at Big Beach TV, brought to us a story that has yet to be told on television," said Carmi Zlotnik, Managing Director of Starz. "There is heart and humor in capturing the first-generation experience."

"Big Beach TV exists to champion fresh voices, tell great stories and celebrate unique characters," Pasternack said. "We feel fortunate to have all of these elements in great abundance thanks to Richard Villegas Jr., and we couldn't ask for a better home than STARZ."

Richard Villegas Jr. was born in East LA and earned a Bachelor's of Arts degree in American Literature and Chicano Studies from UCLA and a Master's in Professional Writing from USC. Villegas lives in East LA a few blocks away from where his great-grandparents and grandparents rest in peace.

Starz retains all domestic and international multiplatform rights including television, home entertainment, and digital.

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