Menudo, The World’s Original Boy Band, Is Getting The Series Treatment Thanks To Amazon Prime
The 1970s’ Latino boy band of your dreams Menudo is getting a scripted television series on Amazon Prime. Produced by Endemol Shine Latino with Somos Prods, Boomdog TV, and Piñolywood Studios, Súbete a Mi Moto will tell the story of the band’s four-decade spanning history. The first season of the show will tell the origin story of the band. Best of all it will be available in over 200 countries and territories so fans around the world can rejoice.
The band has a special history not just because it launched the careers of Latino giants like Ricky Martin, Draco Rosa, and Edgardo Diaz, but because of Menudo’s unusual practice of replacing members once they reached the age of 16. It’s easy to see why a band with such a sprawling group of members would make a great foundation for storytelling — there’s so much to be said and lots of opportunities to cast amazing, young Latinx actors.
This is the third series by Endemol Shine Latino and Boomdog to focus on iconic Latinx artists. The collaborators also released the biopic series “El Vato” about the Mexican singer El Dasa on NBC Universo and “El Ganador” which focuses on Puerto Rican reggaeton artist Nicky Jam which will air on Telemundo soon.
Súbete A Mi Moto
The new Menudo series borrows its name from the band’s hit song “Súbete a mi Moto.” Founded in Puerto Rico by Edgardo Diaz in the 1970s, Menudo was an unprecedented success never before seen with a band featuring Latinx teenage boys. With 39 members over four decades, the band finally disbanded in 2009. However, it helped launch the careers of many popular Latin icons like Ricky Martin and Draco Rosa who were members during the height of the group’s fame in the ’80s. The band has sold over 20 million albums worldwide.
“There are musical phenomena that become well-known landmarks because of their impact both with their songs and stage presence, as well as for the richness of their personal experiences” Luis Villanueva, president and CEO of Somos Prods. told Variety.
“Menudo is one of such phenomena and its history, as told by the creator and manager of the band, guarantees the excitement and appeal of each of this series’ episodes.”
So who will star in the series?
Castmembers have been hired but they have not been announced yet. Fortunately, the creators consulted with former members for accuracy.
“We are thrilled that Prime Video will be sharing this special series with their global audience. We’ve just started production and have assembled a tremendous cast and production team. And we congratulate and thank our partners at Somos and Piñolywood,” said Alejandro Rincon, CEO Endemol Shine Boomdog.
While I can’t speak for the morality of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, one thing that is great about it streaming on Prime is that it is made with Spanish-speaking and Latin American audiences in mind as well as Latinxs living in America. Moreover, can you think of the last time you saw a show with a predominantly Puerto Rican cast?
“The Series will present an amazing Puerto Rican story of one of the first boy bands assembled and how its manager made it a global sensation. The group became a trailblazer in the music industry. Excited that Prime Video will provide a global distribution platform for this Series that we are sure global audiences will enjoy watching.”
Menudo released their first album in 1977, however it wasn’t until the 1980s that the effort became a household name. By 1983, they had a 4-minute series called “Menudo on ABC” during Saturday morning cartoons, solidifying their success in Latin America and the United States. Known for their hits “Quiero Ser”, “Rock En La TV”, “Claridad”, and “Mi Banda Toca Rock,” Menudo has left a lasting impact on multiple generations.
Despite being one of Menudo’s biggest stars Ricky Martin told Rolling Stone in 1999, he was rejected three times because he was too short. However, Martin was persistent.
“I’d see Menudo and get this sparkle, like I couldn’t live without being in the band. For them, the detaching process was very hard. But, me, I was ready for it,” Martin said.
While earning a spot on Menudo was a coveted gig it wouldn’t last for long. The band rotated members after each boy turned 16 in order to keep teens interested over the decades.
The original lineup consisted of two sets of brothers, Fernando and Nefty Sallaberry from Ponce, Puerto Rico and Carlos Meléndez, Oscar Meléndez, and Ricky Meléndez. The first season will feature fifteen, 60-minute episodes and is expected to follow the boys and Edgardo Diaz’s musical journey and rise to fame