Earlier this year when Telemundo consolidated its production units, Santana was tasked with launching and running Telemundo Global Studios, where he oversees the company’s domestic and international scripted production units. His experience in the development process—across all genres—from script procurement to casting is as valuable as his instincts for what makes a program viable for international distribution. “We need to give more opportunities to those behind the camera including producers, cinematographers, writers, VFX, and directors,” he says.
What’s a recent example of a step forward for diversity in the industry?
At Telemundo Global Studios we pride ourselves in being the only Hispanic scripted production house that includes more than 16 nationalities in all of our productions. We believe that by doing this, we are giving more people the opportunity to get in front and behind the camera, making our productions more reflective of the world U.S. Hispanics live in today.
In what areas should the industry step up its efforts with regard to diversity and inclusion?
I believe that we need to give more opportunities to those behind the camera including producers, cinematographers, writers, VFX, and directors.
What’s your best advice to someone just entering the video content/distribution industry?
Study and prepare yourself; going to school is not enough. Become an expert in your field and specialize in something that will set you apart from others.
What’s been the most dramatic change in your sector of the business today vs. three years ago?
Consumer habits have changed radically in the past five years. They don’t only have the choice of when and where they can watch content. Now, they can also choose how much they can watch. Our challenge is to produce high quality content that is as good as or better than the digital platforms that are allowing the consumer to watch as much content as they want at once.