The Roku Channel Expanding to Mexico

Roku Oct 13 announced it is launching its branded ad-supported streaming platform in Mexico. The Roku Channel is a free streaming channel available on Roku devices that offers users access to movies and TV episodes, including more than 30 Roku Originals.

Roku is the top streaming platform in Mexico, Canada and the United States, based on hours consumed on the platform.

The channel, which is available to owners of a Roku streaming player or Roku television without the need for a login or subscription, is offering Mexican users a general entertainment selection that includes “Los Pitufos en la aldea perdida,” “Blade Runner 2049,” “El Sorprendente Hombre Araña 2,” “Psicópata Americano,” “Draft Day,” “El Patriota” “El lado luminoso de la vida,” “Lluvia de hamburguesas 2,” “Hombres de negro II” and “Whip It,” among others.

“Launching The Roku Channel in Mexico represents a pivotal moment for our business as we continue to expand internationally and offer streamers free access to great entertainment and news content,” Rob Holmes, VP of programming at Roku, said in a statement.

The company claims The Roku Channel is a top five channel on the Roku platform, by both reach and streaming hour engagement in the U.S.

“We provide the scale for content providers and brands to reach these critical streaming-first audiences,” Holmes said.

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The channel’s content selection comes from existing global partners including Sony Pictures, Lionsgate, and local partner Telefórmula, among others, with more titles being added over time. By offering content from existing channel publishers, The Roku Channel helps them to drive additional viewers on the Roku platform.

“Free entertainment is one of the most searched-for categories on our platform, so we are pleased to meet that demand with the launch,” said Mirjam Laux, VP of international advertising and content.

Roku Originals include “Operación Marea Negra,” “Natural Born Narco” and “Mamas.” In a few weeks, original movie Weird: The Al Yankovic Story arrives on The Roku Channel. Debuting on Nov. 4, the parody biopic stars Daniel Radcliffe and a cast that includes Evan Rachel Wood and Rainn Wilson, among others.

Live channels available in Mexico include Telefórmula, Canela TV, Novelisima, and Runtime Espanol.

CNN+ Streaming Service to Bow Original Eva Longoria Series

CNN’s pending subscription streaming video service, CNN+, is set to launch early next year with an original six-part series featuring actress, producer, director and activist Eva Longoria.

In a spin-off on the CNN original series “Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy,” the new series, “Eva Longoria: Searching for Mexico,” finds the actress traversing Mexico exploring one of the most popular, and arguably misunderstood, global cuisines. From harvesting blue agave for tequila as the Aztecs once did, to slow cooking traditional mole sauce in Oaxaca, Longoria journeys across the many vibrant regions of Mexico to reveal its unique and colorful cuisines.

The show will debut exclusively on CNN+, which is set to launch in the first quarter of 2022. “Searching for Mexico” will contribute to CNN+’s slate of original on-demand programming available later in 2022.

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“Eva’s passion for Mexico and its culture and cuisine are a natural follow up to Stanley’s trip through Italy,” said Amy Entelis, EVP for talent and content development at CNN Worldwide. “We are thrilled she will take her journey on CNN+.”

Study: Roku No. 1 TV Streaming Platform in Mexico

Roku announced that it is the No. 1 TV streaming platform in Mexico, based on hours streamed, according to a recent study conducted by the Hypothesis Group.

The study was conducted by the Hypothesis Group among 2,534 survey respondents in October 2021. In addition, the study also found that consumers in Mexico view Roku as the best streaming platform for free TV shows and movies, according to Roku.

This leadership position comes as the company closes 2021 with eight Roku TV partners in Mexico and the arrival of the new Roku Streaming Stick 4K player.

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“We are proud to be the No. 1 TV streaming platform in Mexico, and that is thanks to the consumers who have enjoyed our streaming players over the past six years, our Roku TV partners that chose to build TVs using Roku’s operating system, our retail partners for working with Roku to showcase our products to consumers, and our content partners that have worked with Roku to bring their entertainment to our users,” Arthur van Rest, VP of international at Roku, said in a statement.

Eastwood’s ‘Cry Macho’ Available for Digital Purchase Nov. 5, on Disc Dec. 7

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment will release Cry Macho for premium digital ownership Nov. 5, followed by a release on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Dec. 7.

Cry Macho is directed by and also stars Clint Eastwood as an aging former rodeo star and washed-up horse breeder in 1979 who takes a job from an ex-boss (Dwight Yoakam) to bring the man’s young son (Eduardo Minett) home from Mexico. Forced to take the backroads on their way to Texas, the unlikely pair faces an unexpectedly challenging journey, during which the world-weary horseman finds unexpected connections and his own sense of redemption.

The cast also includes Natalia Traven, Fernanda Urrejola and Horacio Garcia Rojas. The screenplay was written by Nick Schenk and N. Richard Nash, based on the novel by Nash.

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It earned $10.2 million at the domestic box office during a theatrical run in which it was also available concurrently on the HBO Max streaming service for 31 days.

The disc editions include the featurette “Back in the Saddle: The Making of Cry Macho.” The Blu-ray editions also include the featurette “Macho and the Mustangs.”

The year 2021 marks the 50th year of Eastwood’s partnership with Warner Bros., starting with Dirty Harry.

Netflix Celebrating ‘National Mexican Cinema Day’ Aug. 15

In an effort to highlight its Spanish-language movies, including features from Mexico, Netflix will showcase a collection of titles on its “National Mexican Cinema Day” Aug. 15 through Sept. 15.

Citing data that suggests 40% of global subscribers have streamed Mexican movies in the past five years, Netflix’s #QueMexicoSeVea (Let Mexico Be Seen): A Celebration of Mexican Cinema, features the film adaptation of Juan Rulfo’s seminal novel Pedro Páramo, in addition to a collection of films curated by IMCINE (Mexican Film Institute) that will be available on the SVOD platform.

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“Movies have always been a part of Mexico,” Francisco Ramos, VP of Latin American Content at Netflix, wrote in a blog post. “No matter where they come from, each movie and character is a mirror of who we are. As we create, see and celebrate these movies, we want to encourage the world to watch Mexican cinema and see ourselves reflected on screen, just as we are.”

Movies includes Oscar winner RomaMidnight FamilyDance of the 41, Modern Loves, I Don’t Know Whether to Slit My Wrists or Leave Them Long, Love of My Loves and Chicuarotes.

Love’s a Bitch, the first feature film from Oscar-winning director Alejandro González Iñárritu (Birdman, The Revenant), arrives on Netflix Sept. 10 with a restored version, which was first seen at the Morelia International Film Festival for the movie’s 20th anniversary.

Other titles streaming include:

A Cop Movie: Through a cinematographic experiment that plays with the limits of fiction and documentary, A Cop Movie immerses the viewer in an unusual space. The film puts the spotlight on the police, one of the most controversial institutions in Mexico. Directed by Alonso Ruizpalacios and produced by Elena Fortes and Daniela Alatorre, it has been recognized by the Berlin Film Festival, where its editor, Yibran Asuad, received the Silver Bear for Outstanding Artistic Contribution.

Prayers for the Stolen: Documentary filmmaker Tatiana Huezo’s fictional debut arrives after its screening at the Cannes Film Festival, where it competed in the category Un Certain Regard (A Certain Look), earning the “Special Mention.” The film follows three friends in their journey into adolescence. In a town where there are only women and poppy planting has enforced violence, these girls cut their hair like boys and have underground hiding places to survive; but in their own world, magic and joy still prevail.

This Is Not a Comedy: Starring Cassandra Cianguerotti and Adriana Paz, this Netflix film is directed by Gabriel Nuncio and Rodrigo Guardiola. Gabriel has lost his hair, money and faith. When his best friend Melisa asks him to be the sperm donor for her child, he sees an opportunity to become a father, a better person and leave behind his unstable career as a comedian.

The Spokeswoman: Documentary directed by Luciana Kaplan and produced by Carolina Coppel, Mónica Lozano and Eamon O’Farrill. It’s an approach to the indigenous peoples of Mexico through María de Jesús Patricio Martínez (Marichuy), selected by the Indigenous Government Council of the National Indigenous Congress to represent its voice and become the first female indigenous candidate to run for president of Mexico.

Ruido: Directed by Natalia Beristáin, the film narrates the descent into hell of Julia, a mother in search of her daughter. Through this gruesome journey she finds the possibility of being cured by the dignified rage of younger generations of women who raise their voices and take over the streets.

Thriller Shot in One Take ‘Rendez-Vous’ Due on VOD Feb. 12 From Level 33

The Mexican horror thriller shot in one take, Rendez-Vous, will debut in theaters and on VOD Feb. 12 from Level 33 Entertainment.

The film follows Lili and Eduardo, who meet for the first time after connecting on a dating app. Eduardo arrives late but with a good reason in a place like Mexico City: he was mugged, and they took his phone so he couldn’t text her to say he was running late. While at first everything seems to be going fine, when Lili finds Eduardo’s phone in his jacket, things take an unexpected and terrifying turn for the worse.

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The film won multiple festival awards, including honors for Best First Time Director at the Hollywood Blood Horror Festival and for Best Mexican Feature Film at the Espanto International Film Festival.

Tubi Launches on Roku Platform in Mexico

Roku Dec. 14 announced that Fox Entertainment’s ad-supported streaming video service Tubi is now available on the Roku platform in Mexico. The app is available for free from the Roku Channel Store. Users can access thousands of movies and TV shows for free via the app on their Roku device.

“Tubi is an important AVOD channel that is already very popular on the Roku platform in the U.S. and we are excited to bring their extensive entertainment library to users in Mexico,” Yulia Poltorak, director of international content distribution at Roku, said in a statement.

Andrea Clarke-Hall, head of global business development at Tubi, said partnership with Roku in Mexico is instrumental in its mission marketing a free alternative to SVOD.

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“We’re excited to expand our footprint with one of the leading streaming brands, in concert with our content partner TV Azteca, with Roku users now able to enjoy an immense library featuring some of the world’s beloved Spanish-language titles,” Clarke-Hall said.

Tubi, which Fox acquired earlier this year for $440 million, offers movies and television shows — all localized in Spanish-language, from Latin America and the U.S., including film Consciencia, starring Rubén Zamora (Atrapada, Vuelve Temprano), Bárbara de Regil (Rosario Tijeras, Tiempos Felices), and Carla Nieto (Sin Origen, Cuéntame). Roku users will also have access to genres and collections, including “Hollywood Favorites,” “Family Entertainment,” and “The Best of TV Azteca” that includes Exatlón MexicoMasterChefLo que La Gente CuenteMontecristo, Mientras Haya Vida, Bellezas Indomables and Amor en Custodia.

Funimation Streaming Service Coming to Latin America

Anime content provider Funimation is expanding its streaming service to Latin America this fall.

Currently available in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand, the service will expand to Mexico and Brazil later this year.

Funimation also announced it would offer select subtitled and dubbed anime series in Spanish and Portuguese. The announcement was made during FunimationCon 2020, a free two-day virtual fan festival celebrating anime.

“Anime is special in that it speaks equally to people from different cultures, regions and languages around the world,” said Colin Decker, CEO of Funimation global group. “Audiences in Latin America are among the most passionate in the world and have been clamoring for more. Expanding Funimation to Mexico and Brazil is the natural next step for us to serve those fans and extend our brands.”

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Funimation is an independently operated joint venture between U.S.-based Sony Pictures Entertainment and Japan’s Aniplex, a subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment (Japan). Its streaming services offer a catalog of more than 700 anime series and 13,000-plus hours of content available on 15 platforms and in 47 countries, according to the company.

Tubi to Launch in Mexico With TV Azteca

Ad-supported VOD service Tubi Jan. 21 announced it will expand its service into Mexico later this year in collaboration with TV Azteca, one of the largest producers of Spanish-language television programming in the world. As part of the deal, TV Azteca will offer advertising sales for Tubi in Mexico and promote the service to its audience via online and other platforms.

In addition, some of TV Azteca’s titles will be made available to Tubi viewers in Mexico, including “Exatlón Mexico,” “MasterChef,” and “Lo que La Gente Cuente,” among others.

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Separately, Tubi is partnering with Chinese TV manufacturer Hisense  and its Vidaa platform to be the exclusive connected TV partner in Mexico. As part of its partnership, Tubi will be pre-loaded and placed on the Vidaa TV homepage with content also listed in the “Vidaa Free” section of the platform — as well as their dedicated “free content” button found on their remotes. Tubi will also be supported in-store with retail promotion this year.

“We’re thrilled to collaborate with a world-class partner and, together with TV Azteca, launch a new free streaming home to some of Mexico’s most celebrated television franchises,” Tubi CEO Farhad Massoudi said in a statement. “Our expansion into Latin America is just beginning and we look forward to announcing additional territories in the future.”

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“As part of TV Azteca’s transformation towards the future, we are looking forward to enhancing our distribution and make the best television productions available to a broader audience via Tubi,” said Alberto Ciurana, chief content & distribution officer for TV Azteca.

“Providing users with access to the best free content locally in every market and from all over the world is one of the key goals of our platform, and Tubi is a great partner for this,” said Guy Edri, EVP of business development for Hisense’s Vidaa platform.

In September 2019, Tubi announced viewers streamed more than 132 million hours of content — a 40% increase since May — and the service will launch in the U.K. in 2020. In addition to Hisense televisions, Tubi is available on Android and iOS mobile devices, Amazon Echo Show, Google Nest Hub Max, Comcast Xfinity X1, Cox Contour, and on OTT devices such as Amazon Fire TV, Vizio TVs, Sony TVs, Samsung TVs, Roku, Apple TV, Chromecast, Android TV, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. Consumers can also watch Tubi content on the Web at

Amazon Prime Channels Launches in Mexico

Amazon has expanded its Prime Channels video platform to Mexico, affording members in the country access to third-party subscription streaming video services.

Launched in 2015 in the United States, Prime Channels is an attempt to thwart online TV and pay-TV by offering Prime subscribers direct access to alternative streaming services.

The platform has been credited helping SVOD services such as HBO Now, StarzPlay, Cinedigm’s Dove Channel, CBS’ Showtime OTT, BritBox and Viacom’s Paramount+ generate sustainable subscriber bases.

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“We are excited to bring even more selection to our Prime members in Mexico with the launch of Prime Video Channels,” Greg Hart, VP of Amazon Prime Video, said in a statement. “By simplifying our customers’ entertainment experience all within the Prime Video app, we can make it even easier for them to select, subscribe and enjoy their favorite TV shows and movies from our channel providers.”

Amazon Prime Channels is also available in the U.K., Germany, Austria, Japan and Canada.