La Princesa de Woking

An authentic, 1980’s Spanish-language telenovela… set in contemporary small-town England. At her mother’s untimely funeral, Becky Hello (a typical British millennial as imagined by Mexican writers who have never been to the UK) discovers she has inherited a fortune. But it isn’t long before nefarious family members begin to circle, and Becky must keep her wits about her if she is to avoid the same fate as her mother.

Director’s Statement

Rather than spoofing the genre, we were interested in working within it to create comedy from outrageous storylines and dialogue played straight, and from the massive contradictions in mashing together the velvety, 80s golden era of the telenovela aesthetic of flimsy sets and soft focus melodrama, with the stark British reality of Boots meal deals, NHS waiting times, passionate Brexit views and unimpressive cul-de-sac exterior shots.

We had a lot of fun asking ourselves ‘what would a real telenovela crew do in this situation?’ We managed to track down some vintage cameras that gave us an authentic and ridiculous look , and one of our favourite moments is when the arch villain falls down the stairs (or was she tripped?). The brief glimpse of bearded stuntman, and the repetition of the action from two different angles to really squeeze our money’s worth out of the stunt, before a jarringly a-continuous cut to the actress coming to rest at the bottom of the stairs felt like it hit that double sweet spot of staying absolutely true to the genre, while also sending it up for comic effect.