Porta dos Fundos Releases Trailer for Its Latest Christmas Special, “The Edge of Theocracy”

Porta dos Fundos is readying for its latest Christmas special…

The controversial hit Brazilian comedy troupe will release its annual Christmas Special, The Edge of Theocracy, on December 10.

Porta dos Fundos

A play on Petra Costa’s Oscar-nominated documentary, The Edge of Democracy, a trailer released on November 20 on its dedicated YouTube channel lured more than 300,000 views in three days.

Porta dos Fundos’ Christmas specials are renowned for their ironic, some would argue profane, take on the life of Christ.

Taking its cue from Costa’s The Edge of Democracy, which points to Brazil’s spiral into far-right politics as a cautionary tale to the world, The Edge of Theocracy satirizes Brazil’s political scene and delivers tart comments on global issues, like polarization, through the prism of Biblical events thousands of years ago. A delighted Costa gave her blessing and makes a brief appearance as herself in the show.

Shot in less than a week, the troupe opted for the documentary format in order to better adhere to COVID-19 safety protocols. The use of talking heads and testimonials were the perfect solution to rules on social distancing, said co-founder/writer Fabio Porchat, who spoke to Variety while filming some scenes outdoors last September.

Porchat, who plays Jesus, was standing in the middle of a field in sweltering 95F (35C) heat, with trees and mountains in the distance, while just behind him, his actors were playing out some scenes.

Their 2019 Xmas special, The First Temptation of Christ, featured a gay Christ, which unleashed a firestorm of complaints, a petition to ban the special signed by more than two million people and worst of all, a Molotov cocktail on their headquarters, which caused a fire that was fortunately put out by alert security guards.

“This is our seventh Christmas Special and they’ve always been provocative; only last year’s special produced a backlash,” he pointed out, suggesting that being the first one released during the tenure of current populist President Jair Bolsonaro made it a target. “His government is promoting fundamentalist religious thought,” he asserted.

There were some calls to cancel Netflix subscriptions, which the trailer cheekily refers to. “If you cancelled Netflix, get ready to cancel YouTube,” it declares, signaling the troupe’s return to their dedicated YouTube channel.

Their last two Christmas Specials, The First Temptation of Christ and The Last Hangover,” were Netflix Originals. The latter won a Best Comedy International Emmy in 2019.

“We reach a bigger audience on YouTube,” said Porchat who added that ViacomCBS, which took a majority stake in Porta dos Fundos in 2017, co-produced this year’s special with Porta dos Fundos.

Porchat admitted that the bombing of their headquarters raised their international profile so he’s grateful for that.

He is a self-confessed Monty Python fan, especially their irreverent comedy about a hapless man who is mistaken for the Messiah, Life of Brian. “We don’t insult the Bible, we research the subject matter quite extensively,” he noted.

No one is spared their satirical touch, including Buddha, Shiva and some alien creature who replies, “Ask Tom Cruise!” when asked to explain what he is in The First Temptation of Christ.

In The Edge of Theocracy various “messiahs” weigh in on an investigation of Jesus’ legitimacy.

The new special promises to be a gleeful poke in the eye to the troupe’s critics.

Raphael Logam Earns International Emmy Awards Nomination for His Work on Brazil’s “Impuros”

Raphael Logam is celebrating a special recognition for the second year in a row…

The International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences has unveiled the nominations for this year’s International Emmy Awards, with the 34-year-old Brazilian actor earning a nod.

Raphael Logam

Logam is nominated in the Best Performance By An Actor category for his work the second season of The Walt Disney Company’s Impuros. It’s his second consecutive nod in the category for his work on the Brazilian series.

But Logam isn’t the only Latino/a nominee this year…

Andrea Beltrão has been nominated in the Best Performance By An Actress category.

The 57-year-old Brazilian actress earned the nod for her work in the Brazilian series Hebe: A Estrela do Brasil. 

The International Emmy Award winners will be announced at a ceremony produced from New York City on November 23. Further details will be announced in October.

Here’s a look at this year’s nominees:

Arts Programming

Jake and Charice, NHK, Japan
Refavela 40, HBO Brasil / Conspiração, Brazil
Vertige de la Chute (Ressaca), Babel Doc / France Televisions, France
Why do we Dance?, Sky Arts Production Hub, United Kingdom

Best Performance By An Actor
Billy Barratt in Responsible Child, Kudos / 72 films, United Kingdom
Guido Caprino in 1994, Sky / Wildside / Beta Film, Italy
Raphael Logam in Impuros (Impure) – Season 2, The Walt Disney Company / Barry Company, Brazil
Arjun Mathur in Made in Heaven, Excel Media & Entertainment LLP / Tiger Baby Productions, India

Best Performance By An Actress
Emma Bading in Play, Sappralot Productions / Tellux Next / BR / ARD Degeto, Germany
Andrea Beltrão in Hebe, Globo / 20th Century Fox Brazil / Hebe Forever / Labrador Filmes / Loma Filmes / Warner Bros, Brazil
Glenda Jackson in Elizabeth is Missing, STV Productions, United Kingdom
Yeo Yann Yann in Invisible Stories, HBO Asia / Birdmandog, Singapore

Back to Life, SHOWTIME Presents / Two Brothers Pictures Ltd., United Kingdom
Fifty, EndemolShine Israel, Israel
Four More Shots Please, Pritish Nandy Communications Limited, India
Ninguém tá Olhando (Nobody’s Looking), Gullane Entertainment / Netflix, Brazil

El Testigo (The Witness), Caracol Television, Colombia
For Sama, Channel 4 News / ITN Productions / PBS Frontline, United Kingdom
Granni-E-minem, Korean Broadcasting System, South Korea
Terug naar Rwanda (Back to Rwanda), De Chinezen / VRT, Belgium

Drama Series
Charité 2- Season 2, UFA FICTION GmbH, Germany
Criminal UK, Idiotlamp Productions / Netflix, United Kingdom
Delhi Crime, Ivanhoe Pictures / Golden Karavan / Poor Man’s Productions / Netflix, India
El Jardín de Bronce (The Bronze Garden) – Season 2, HBO Latin America Originals / Pol-ka, Argentina

Non-English Language U.S. Primetime Program

20th Annual Latin GRAMMY® Awards, Univision / The Latin Recording Academy, USA
La Reina del Sur – Season 2, Telemundo Global Studios / Netflix / AG Studios Colombia / Diagonal TV / Argos, USA
No te Puedes Esconder, Telemundo Global Studios / Netflix, USA
Preso No.1, Telemundo Global Studios / Keshet, USA

Non-Scripted Entertainment

Canta Comigo, Rádio e Televisão Record S.A. / Endemol Shine, Brazil
Folkeopplysningen (The Public Enlightenment), Teddy TV, Norway
MasterChef Thailand – Season 3, Heliconia H Group Company Limited, Thailand
Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds, Endemol Shine Australia, Australia

Short-Form Series
Content, Ludo Studio, Australia
#martyisdead, Bionaut / MALL.TV / cz.nic, Czech Republic
Mil Manos por Argentina (One Thousand Hands for Argentina), Storylab / Atomic Lab / Flow, Argentina
People Like Us – Season 2, Action for AIDS Singapore / Cheo Pictures / Pilgrim Pictures, Singapore

Chen Xi Yuan (Love And Destiny), Gcoo Entertainment Co. Ltd. / iQIYI, China
Na Corda Bamba (On Thin Ice), Plural Entertainment Portugal, Portugal
Órfãos da Terra (Orphans of a Nation), Globo, Brazil
Pequeña Victoria (Victoria Small), Viacom International Studios / Oficina Burman, Argentina

TV Movie / Mini-Series
L’Effondrement (The Collapse), ET BIM / STUDIO+ / CANAL+, France
Elis – Viver é Melhor que Sonhar, Globo / Globo Filmes / Bravura Cinematografica / Academia de Filmes, Brazil
The Festival of the Little Gods, Tohoku Broadcasting, Japan
Responsible Child, Kudos / 72 films, United Kingdom

Netflix’s Ursula Corbero Starrer “La Casa del Papel” Sets New Viewership Record

Ursula Corberohas 34 million reasons to celebrate…

Netflix’s Spanish-language smash La Casa de Papel, aka Money Heist, starring the 29-year-old Spanish actress, has set a new record for the streamer. 


With more than 34.3M households tuning in for Part 3, this is the largest first-week global household turnout for a non-English-language Netflix series. More than 70% finished the entire season in the initial seven days.

The third installment of the Alex Pina-created phenomenon launched on July 19. Evidenced by the massive viewing numbers, fans of the series are legion around the world — and not only in Spanish-speaking markets, but extending to countries like France, Italy and India. 

In the first week, La Casa de PapelPart 3 was the most-watched title in Spain, Italy, France, Portugal, Brazil, Chile and Argentina, among others, according to Netflix.

Already last year, Netflix said the series, produced by Vancouver Media, was its most watched non-English show ever on the service. It scooped an International Emmyfor Best Drama last November.

Alvaro Mortestars in the thriller as El Professor, a mysterious criminal mastermind who recruits a group of thieves for an epic heist as he manipulates the police to carry out his plan. Part 3 sees him develop new heists with even higher stakes.

Ursula CorberoJamie LorenteMiguel HerránDarko PericItziar Ituno,Paco TousAlba FloresEsther Acebo,Itziar ItuñoEnrique ArceKiti Mánver,Juan Fernándezand Mario de la Rosaalso star.

Pina in 2018 secured a global exclusive overall dealwith the streaming giant. In June, production began on 10-part UK/Spanish crime drama White Lines, which Pina wrote and is showrunning.