The telenovela genre has been on television for many years and Colombia was one of the first countries to develop it, with great success since its inception. went through the chain RTI (Radio Televisión Interamericana S.A.) when these productions began in that country in 1962, with melodramas like In the name of love o infamous lie, Cuban radio soap operas adapted for television. A year later, Cadena Radial Colombiana was born (SNAIL), another of the great producers of this successful genre.
Thus, little by little, Colombian soap opera productions are reaching many countries around the world, including ours. titles like Passion of Hawks, woman-fragranced coffee o Ugly Betty They swept around the planet. Although the first to break into the international arena were the Venezuelans, little by little Colombia is creating products that win the race against those. It was in the 90s when he began his conquest of the world.
For several years, Colombian telenovelas held hegemony, although later Mexico took over and also somewhat Peru, Brazil, Chile or Argentina. For the Colombian public it was a way to escape from the reality of a country in crisis, however, like other Latin American countries, they managed to make these love stories cross borders and also interest countries whose circumstances were not at all similar.
Initially the melodrama Colombian part of a love story that suffers insurmountable obstacles until it reaches its happy ending, after many chapters that keep the audience on edge. However, Colombian telenovelas have been precisely some of the most innovative compared to Venezuelan or Mexican ones. Precisely the telenovela that has had the most success at an international level and that has been sold to more countries has been I am Betty the Ugly onea story starring a girl who does not represent beauty.
Later, these Colombian productions have been transformed to reflect situations in the country, such as the world of drugs. And they have also innovated by introducing the police genre into the telenovela, suspense or comedy. They have also been one of the first to sweep Netflix, in this new digital age, with titles such as woman-fragranced coffee o the queen of flow.
Here we leave you a list with the 20 best Colombian soap operas in history.
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It premiered in October 1999 and has been described as the most successful telenovela in television history. It was broadcast in more than 180 countries and translated into 25 languages. Starring Ana María Orozco and Jorge Enrique Abello, it tells the story of a brilliant but physically unattractive economist who falls in love with her boss, a handsome manager.
It came after ‘Yo soy Betty, la fea’ (2001) with a protagonist who is far from the typical Colombian telenovela heartthrob: he is not rich, he is not handsome, he does not dress well and he thinks he is a good dancer. Pedro (Miguel Varoni) arrives in Bogotá and ‘bumps into’ the love of his life, whose driver and confidant he will become.
This successful story arrives in Colombia in 2003, based on the 1994 novel Las Aguas Mansas, written by Julio Jiménez, who was also the screenwriter of this new one. Set in some ranches in the interior of the country, it showed for the first time landscapes and characters to which the soap opera audience was not accustomed. Instead of a leading couple, beautiful and successful, this fiction had six. Danna García, Mario Cimarro, Paola Rey, Juan Alfonso Baptista, Natasha Klauss and Michel Brown played three sisters and three brothers who fall in love with each other.
‘Passion of hawks 2’
Due to the success of that story around the world, over the years a second part was opted for, with the same actors, twenty years later. Thus, Pasión de gavilanes 2 has burst onto the scene, perhaps with less success than the first, but occupying the lists of the most watched productions on Netflix almost from day one.
‘Woman Scented Coffee’ (1994)
Another Colombian telenovela that was a great success at the time and that, years later, has repeated that triumph, but in this case with other actors. In 1994, Margarita Rosa de Francisco and Guy Ecker penetrated the public with this story also set in the Colombian countryside, which was broadcast and adapted to several countries. It is considered one of the most popular on Colombian television.
‘Woman Scented Coffee’ (2021)
Seventeen years later a new version arrives, starring Laura Londoño and William Levy, which premiered in Colombia and the United States and immediately made the leap to Netflix, becoming one of the great successes on the digital platform.
It is considered the telenovela with the highest audience in 2008. It is an American telenovela produced by RTI Television for Telemundo. Starring Victoria Ruffo and Mauricio Ochmann, the story centers on a 50-year-old married couple, who will finally find love with people younger than themselves.
Starring Carolina Ramírez and Mark Tacher, it was broadcast in 2006 and achieved a large audience in its country. Emiliano is a high-ranking Mexican executive who finds himself involved in a scam. Fleeing from the police, he leaves for Colombia. When he leaves the hotel, his belongings are stolen, he is beaten and he is injured. In his state and desperate to find a phone, he arrives at a Mexican music bar where he meets the beautiful young Rosario.
Another great international success through Netflix. It was produced in 2018 and has two seasons. The story shows the roots of young Colombians of humble origins for reggeaton music, and mixes a story of love, betrayal, revenge, drugs and mafia. It stars Carolina Ramírez and Carlos Torres.
Mario Cimarro and Lorena Rojas arrive in 2005 with this story set in Miami, with its landscapes and beaches. It talks about a man who reincarnates in the body of another and discovers things about his life that he did not know.
‘The fox the sword and the rose’
American telenovela of 2007 produced by RTI and starring Christian Meier and Marlene Favela, being the debut of this in Colombia. It is based on the story of the brave and handsome outlaw, considered the most wanted bandit in California, but whose objective is to ensure justice and order in the city.
‘I’ll teach you to love’
From 2004, it stars Danna García, Miguel Varoni and Michel Brown. It tells the story of the Méndez, a wealthy family, owner of a construction company and a cattle farm where fighting horses and bulls are raised.
From 2009, its first season, and from 2017, the second, during its original broadcast it was positioned as the most watched production of 2009 in Colombia. It has also been released on Netflix. Dreams, ambitions, love, hate, claims, beauty and the search for power are some of the conditions inherent in the lives of the protagonists of this story, wrapped in the extravagances, pleasures and adversities of the world. of drug trafficking. Starring Amparo Grisales in the first season, and Paola Rey in the second.
American crime drama from 2011, based on the novel by Arturo Pérez Reverte, is the first internationally successful narconovela. Now its first two seasons are broadcast on Netflix. It stars Kate del Castillo.
‘The Lord of the heavens’
In 2013, this other narconovela emerged, also from the United States and recorded by the Colombian Caracol Televisión, together with Telemundo. It is inspired by the life of Mexican drug lord Amado Carrillo, whose name was changed to Aurelio Casillas in the series. It has an extensive choral cast led by Rafael Amaya. It had seven seasons and, after a year of hiatus, the eighth was announced in 2022.
With Danna García and Segundo Cernadas, it was produced in 2010 and tells the story of Dolores Carrero known as Lola, who was born marked by misfortune and bad luck, until she meets Marcelo Machado, the most eligible and handsome bachelor in town.
‘The woman in the mirror’
From 2004, it stars Paola Rey (in the leading and antagonistic role) and Juan Alfonso Baptista. Juliana Soler is an old-fashioned, innocent, simple, tender and highly intelligent young woman. Her mother, Regina Soler, was a renowned super model who is obsessed with physical beauty and has always made her daughter believe that she is ugly, so Juliana never gave importance to her physical appearance.
Starring Amparo Grisales, Gabriel Porras and Michel Brown, it was produced in 2007. It tells the story of Alejandra Aguirre, a beautiful and indomitable woman, whose sensuality and strength provoke strong passions and great intrigues.
‘Without boobs there is no paradise’
Produced by Caracol Televisión in 2006, it stars María Adelaida Puerta and its last episode broke audience records in Colombia. The rights were sold to Telecinco, which made its own production. The story shows different controversial issues related to the dirty money of drug trafficking, which ends up in prostitution, hit men, etc.
From 2005, it stars Natalia Streignard and Christian Meier, along with Natasha Klauss, Kristina Lilley, Marcelo Buquet and Didier van der Hove. María Teresa Montilla is a woman used to living in the city, but she has to move to live in the hacienda “La Tormenta”, owned by her family in the eastern plains, to try to save her family from ruin. financial.
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