Company InfoGoQuest Media is a leading independent global distributor of entertainment content, specializing in bringing the best of international drama and scripted formats to new audiences worldwide. Our carefully curated catalog is the culmination of sifting through and choosing high-quality stories with an international appeal from non-traditional geographies. We have successfully placed our titles on global platforms like Disney+ Hotstar, Globoplay, SBS, VOYO and Telemundo, among others. Headquartered in Mumbai, with additional offices in the U.K. and Vietnam and a local… Read more
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Vivek LathManaging Director
Jimmy GeorgeVP, Sales & Acquisitions
Mikaela PerezSales, LatAm, Spain & U.S. Hispanic
Ofelya TovmasyanSales, CEE, CIS & Western Europe
Polish Crime Dramas Pack a Punch for GoQuest Media
The team at GoQuest Media has developed expertise in introducing international dramas, hailing from all corners of the world, to global audiences. Two of its latest, Erinyes and Crusade, are crime dramas from Poland’s TVP.
“We were introduced to the titles in the early summer of last year, and both dramas had us divided in terms of which one we liked the best,” says Ofelya Tovmasyan, who heads up sales for CEE, CIS and Western Europe at GoQuest Media. “We discovered and recognized that Erinyes, as a period crime drama starring the formidable Marcin Dorociński (we had just watched The Queen’s Gambit, in which he plays Vasily Borgov, aka ‘The Russian’) and with its unconventional narrative and setting, would cause quite a stir internationally. Crusade, on the other hand, was a thrilling, keeps-you-on-the-edge, unputdownable experience that we just knew would be a big hit with audiences that love pacy, action-packed crime dramas. Both titles have it in them to make it big internationally, and we’re so privileged to have the opportunity to present them to platforms worldwide.”
Erinyes is based on short stories by Marek Krajewski, the setting of which are pre- and postwar Lviv and Wrocław. The main character is Edward Popielski, a detective inspector of great intellect and physical strength who is tormented by visions caused by epilepsy, which he uses to his advantage in investigations. He works as an officer of the law but operates outside of it.
Crusade focuses on the investigations conducted by Detective Jan “Manjaro” Góra and his colleagues from the crime and criminal terror division of the Warsaw Metropolitan Police. The victims include celebrities and powerful people. At first glance, the cases are not linked. However, it soon becomes clear that the kidnappings and murders are connected. The detectives eventually discover that behind these crimes stands an anti-system terrorist organization operating in Warsaw.
“Whenever we add titles to our catalog, the intent is always to ensure that the content is not only rooted locally but also speaks the language that audiences can understand wherever they are in the world,” says Tovmasyan. “Erinyes may be set in pre- and postwar Poland and paint a vivid picture of the borderlands in those times, but the context of one man’s mission to rid the world of evil remains universal. Edward Popielski (Dorociński) is very much an avenger of modern times; he bends the rules, follows the unconventional path and is a deeply troubled man. Still, his unflinching faith in the evolution of humankind toward good is inspiring. A similar conflict sets the base for Crusade, in which a group of underprivileged, indoctrinated, quasi-Mansonesque youngsters undertake to uproot the corrupt elite of society while keeping the police force and one particular investigator, Commissioner Jan Góra (Julian Swiezewski), on their toes.”
Tovmasyan adds that these are “exciting stories shot and acted beautifully and relate well to all cultures and people. They are binge-worthy, premium productions catering to audience demands on both TV and OTT. They fit right into the programming strategy of platforms that want to bring their audiences the best of international content.”
These two TVP dramas add even more diversity to the GoQuest Media slate and “align with our strategy of finding hidden gems from countries traditional distributors don’t go looking in,” Tovmasyan says. The company’s catalog features content from Ukraine, Estonia, Serbia, the Czech Republic and Poland. Titles have gone on to be placed in platforms around the world such as Disney+ Hotstar, Globoplay, VOYO, SBS, Telemundo, WOWOW and others.
This all reinforces GoQuest Media’s belief that “great stories will, simply put, travel well,” Tovmasyan adds. “That’s all that audiences ask for, and we’re here to partner with platforms to bring it to them.”
And the breadth of platform partners bringing programming to viewers has been increasing, notably through AVOD services. “The AVOD business is developing rapidly in Europe, and in a couple of years, it might even dominate the OTT market,” Tovmasyan says. “The reach of content will immensely increase and find resonance with a broader audience. I believe this and FAST channels will open new business opportunities and new windows for content to travel further.”
The overall aim for GoQuest Media, according to Tovmasyan, is to continue adding “compelling, unique and premium titles from around the world to our growing portfolio. Speaking regularly to our clients enables us to get a feel of what kind of programming will appeal to international viewers, which in turn helps us in our strategy. GoQuest’s approach is to make sure that we have a carefully curated catalog, thus ensuring that clients have content that fits their programming needs, leading to entertaining and retaining viewer loyalty.”
GoQuest’s Sacrificiul Embraces Strong Female Leads & Global Storytelling
The story of three sisters who were separated as children and reunited years later by the fortuitous connection of their own kids plays out in Sacrificiul, a drama that GoQuest Media is bringing out to the international market. The show, from Romania, is but one example of the type of diverse global content that GoQuest has in its portfolio.
“We are always on the lookout to expand our catalog of long-running series and keep a variety that will suit various platforms and networks’ audiences,” says Vivek Lath, managing director of GoQuest. “Eastern Europe has been upping the ante in both production and storytelling, and Sacrificiul from Romania came across as a series with a lot of potential—in terms of story and production as well as the creative team and talent telling the story.”
Lath and the GoQuest team were keen to take Sacrificiul on for their sales slate for several reasons, he explains: “Sacrificiul has a wholesome, multigenerational appeal with enough surprises and plot twists to keep the audience hooked. It is an easy watch while telling a very emotional story and has great potential to attract drama-watching audiences across cultures.”
In the series, the sisters—married into the Oprea, Zamfir and Popescu families—have been raised with different upbringings and live disparate lives. After a secret affair that irreversibly brings their destinies together comes to light, they can’t think of a way to make a truce for the sake of their children.
The emotional rollercoaster narrates a story of what it means to love and sacrifice everything for love and how multiple generations in a family have to pay the price of one person’s wrongdoing.
“While the uniqueness of a show is a crucial element for its success, sometimes the value of a show lies in its ability to blend with other series,” Lath says. “For a while now, we have been following how broadcasters invest in local productions as they perform better with the audiences. Sacrificiul can blend in seamlessly with local productions, especially in dubbing markets.”
“Sacrificiul stars some of the finest stalwarts of Romanian theater and television,” he adds. The cast includes Maia Morgenstern, known to the international market from playing the mother of Jesus in Mel Gibson’s epic biblical drama The Passion of the Christ; Mihai Gruia Sandu, known for The Rest is Silence, which was Romania’s submission for the 2009 Academy Award for best foreign language film.
The series is produced by acclaimed Romanian screenwriter, producer, composer and director Ruxandra Ion, “who has many firsts to her name,” Lath points out. “She created Romania’s first soap opera, Numai iubirea; the first music series [in the country], Pariu cu viața; and is the first independent producer of children’s shows in Eastern Europe.”
The characters from the show are truly global, Lath adds. “We had people at MIPCOM commenting on how the female protagonist looked like she could be Turkish, Asian or Latin American. In keeping with this year’s trend of audiences lapping up strong female characters, Sacrificiul is driven by strong women who overcome various challenges while holding their own. It’s an out-and-out drama piece that will appeal to drama lovers the world over.”
Sacrificiul continues in the vein of GoQuest’s strategy to “bring the best of local content to the world,” Lath says. “It is a perfect title to sit well in the family/romantic genre in the long-running space that we have been curating for our catalog. We believe stories of family, love and sacrifice tug firmly at the hearts of drama lovers worldwide. They will appreciate the novelty and variety that a title like Sacrificiul will add to their list of must-watch dramas.”
SHOWCASE: GoQuest & the Global Possibilities of a Good Story
Central to GoQuest Media’s aim to stack its slate with titles with unquestionable international appeal, it seeks out stories whose narratives are authentic and whose geographical, social, cultural or political environment can connect with viewers across the globe. A strong story will find an audience anywhere, which has led to GoQuest successfully sending international titles to a slew of markets, from Latin America to Japan.
“If I were to rephrase a quote from Ernest Hemingway: ‘There is no friend as loyal as a book,’ I would say, ‘There is no friend as loyal as a good story’ when it comes to the success of a film or TV drama,” says Ofelya Tovmasyan, head of sales for CEE, CIS and Western Europe at GoQuest. “GoQuest has stayed loyal to its main mission of finding the best stories from around the world and bringing them to new audiences, irrespective of where they originated from.”
Within GoQuest’s compelling catalog of globally resonant titles are several from Serbia and Estonia. “These titles have now reached global platforms and will give the audience a chance to uncover stories that are not set in the usual destinations you see in international content these days,” says Tovmasyan. “The audience will get to see a local’s perspective on a story set in the very modern Balkans.”
The Serbian title Secrets of the Grapevine tells a love story between winemakers who are separated following a tragic event but find their way back to each other two decades later. In its third season, Civil Servant, another Serbian title on GoQuest’s slate, sees public servants rise up and fight when the world halts and health and survival become the only things that matter. An Estonian series, Traitor’s second season follows Alfred Vint as he continues to serve the Russian intelligence service and the Estonian Ministry of Defence as he keeps a close watch on the new committee head of the Estonian Internal Security Service, his wife Heli joining him in the espionage. There is also the Czech crime drama Rats, which is about a young drug dealer as he fights for his life.
GoQuest has been bringing such stories from the CEE region to global platforms, including Disney+ Hotstar, Globo, SBS, WOWOW and Telemundo. Tovmasyan expects that as the Covid-19 pandemic keeps winding down, the content business and the economics that propel it will continue to demand an international content mix. “Social media has expanded the audience’s inclination to watch content from all over the world, and with international programming providing high quality at a favorable price point, foreign-language content is set to find more and more new audiences,” she explains.
Tovmasyan goes on to note that there remain certain territories in which local productions still dominate and where risks on foreign content—with both broadcasters and streamers alike—are fewer and farther between. However, she predicts that the success in other territories will pave the way for more to follow. Tovmasyan also believes that the market is shifting back to appointment viewing after a long stretch favoring the SVOD binge model and that programming executives are keen to slate narrative styles and locations that are unfamiliar to audiences.
“Demand for long-running series on streaming platforms is growing, and we are working on bringing on board multiple long-running titles that will have the audience returning to the platform on a daily or weekly basis,” Tovmasyan says.
Looking ahead at GoQuest, Tovmasyan sees the company focusing on continuing to bolster its catalog of international drama titles. “We have a strong pipeline of content flowing to Western Europe, the U.S. and Latin America and will continue to add to this,” she says. “We are also investing resources into strengthening our co-production and original series production team, which is currently working with local writers to adapt or write original scripts for OTT platforms.”
GoQuest Media is a leading independent global distributor of entertainment content, specializing in bringing the best of international drama and scripted formats to new audiences worldwide. Our carefully curated catalog is the culmination of sifting through and choosing high-quality stories with an international appeal from non-traditional geographies. We have successfully placed our titles on global platforms like Disney+ Hotstar, Globoplay, SBS, VOYO and Telemundo, among others. Headquartered in Mumbai, with additional offices in the U.K. and Vietnam and a local sales presence in Istanbul and the CEE, GoQuest continues to strongly expand its catalog and distribution footprint around the globe.
To see the full company contact list with phone and email please Click here