Godless John

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Ventre Studio, Canal Brasil, Coral Europa and TVI are jointly producing one of the first independent series coproduction in Brasil and Portugal. Directed by Marina Person (‘California’) and with Brazilian iconic actor Marco Nanini as John of God,it has an stellar casting featuring Bianca Comparato (from Netflix hit show ‘3%’), Karine Teles (‘Second Mother’), Antonio Saboia (‘Bacurau’) and two amazing Portuguese actresses do be announced shortly.

“Since the beginning of the development of the series at Ventre Studio, we have thought about the importance of the international dimension of this story. In fiction, this powerful tool for discussing reality, the foreign perspective is given through the Portuguese characters. With the partnership of Canal Brasil, Coral Media and TVI, we are carrying out one of the first international co-productions for independent series in the country, an increasingly common practice in European and North American territories. The series thus became a pioneer, both in the form and scope of its content, as well as in innovative business structuring”, says Paula Cosenza, producer and partner at power house Ventre Studio.

The fictional series, inspired by real events, tells the story of two sisters who arrived in little town Abadiania 17 years before João de Deus’ series rape scandal. One of them is traumatized by the so-called “spiritual healing surgery”, while the other becomes a faithful collaborator of the medium, claiming to have experienced the miracle of her sister’s healing, and decides to live in Abadiânia for good. The plot unfolds during the reunion of the two sisters, which culminates in a surprising twist.

“Very happy with this joint project by Canal Brasil with TVI, Coral and Ventre Studio. The co-production is a model worked all over the world, and signing this partnership to take Brazilian content beyond our country, reaching an even greater audience, meets our goals”, says André Saddy, Director of Canal Brasil.

‘John of God’ is a real Brazilian man who got famous by performing real and spiritual surgeries on thousands of people over the period of three decades. He was celebrated as the greatest healer of Latin America, attracting people from all over the world for his free services, allegedly curing patients with diseases as severe as cancer. He was arrested in 2018 after some few women came through charging João Teixeira on rape; they were soon followed by hundreds of other victms. So far, he was sentenced to 110 years imprisonment, and is now in house arrest thanks to his poor health condition.

“The three protagonists in our series (all female), represent the real women that started the whole scandal: Carmen represents the faith in the healing powers of John of God, Cecília represents the victims of rape, and Ariane plays the part of a girl that only realizes she was abused after other women spoke up”, says director Marina Person.

“This first co-production with Brazil is a source of pride for the entire Coral team. We are clearly investing in the path of internationalization and we found in TVI, Ventre Studio and Canal Brasil the ideal partners to accomplish this miniseries about such a current, impactful and socially relevant story”, says Bruno Santos, Managing Director of Coral Europe.

The production has a peculiarity which is the predominance of women in the team, especially in leadership positions, in which the main creative and executive decisions are made by women. The project also has the support of ‘Bem Querer Mulher’, an initiative for the integral support of women who suffer violence in Brazil, for the sensitive reading of the scripts and on-site support on the set during the filming of the most delicate scenes. 

“TVI is very happy to be a partner in this co-production that fictionalizes a story of global impact and which will have two Portuguese actresses in the cast. We are anxious and expectant with the start of the recordings and with the certainty that it will be a great series”, says Cristina Ferreira, Director of Fiction and Entertainment at TVI.

The series will feature scenes recorded in Portugal, in addition to filming in Brazil, and the set will be all supported by ‘Cinema Verde’, an initiative that aims to reduce the environmental impact caused by audiovisual productions.  International sales are with Onza Distribution starting at MIPCOM this October.







9 de May de 2022

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