Co-creator of TV Series Based on Lotería Hopes to Develop Something Epic for Latinos

Lead Photo: Art by Stephany Torres for Remezcla
Art by Stephany Torres for Remezcla
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Movies based on board games are not a new concept in Hollywood. From Clue to Battleship to the Ouija franchise, adapting a script from a board game is likely to get more popular in the future with a green-lit Monopoly movie starring Kevin Hart.

TV shows will also get the board game treatment soon with the creation of a fantasy series based on the Lotería game (aka Mexican bingo). Currently in the “early stages,” Lotería will debut on Amazon’s IMDb TV “hopefully next year,” according to co-creator and executive producer Alberto Belli.

TV legend Norman Lear (One Day at a Time) is heading up production with Sony Pictures TV and his studio Act III. Screenwriter Felipe Vargas (Milk Teeth) is currently writing the pilot.

Although it’s much too early for Belli to get into specifics of the show, Lotería will be a one-hour drama that follows two estranged teenage siblings, who set off on a journey across Mexico to reunite their family by finding 16 magical Lotería cards.

“I used to play Lotería with my family and at my elementary school,” Belli, 36, told Remezcla during an interview this week. “It was always around me growing up.”

Belli, who is originally from Guadalajara, Mexico, said he was inspired by epic sci-fi movies and adventure movies like those in the Indiana Jones franchise. He was fascinated by the idea that he could develop the Latino version of these types of films for the small screen.

“Lotería is based on so many histories,” Belli said. “It just made sense to take it and create something based on reality. A lot of people have a relationship with Lotería, so we really want to bring that to the show.”

In Belli’s mind, Lotería will also explore some of the actual characters on the cards and maybe personify them on the series. Imagine having to cross a lagoon during a quest and coming faced to face with La Sirena.

“We want the show to be grounded, but hopefully we can include mythical creatures like her,” he said.

So, with the amount of Lotería that Belli has played throughout his life, what does he consider his favorite Lotería card? “I’m going to say La Estrella (the star),” Belli said. “It gives me an impression of mysticism, like when you wish upon a star.”

Here’s to hoping Belli’s wishes come true with his upcoming show.