Milen Smit and José Coronado in a still from The Snow Girl. SUR

The Snow Girl: Malaga's overnight Netflix sensation

The story, based on the book by local author Javier Castillo, is currently in the top-ten most watched TV series in 60 countries

Iván gelibter


Monday, 30 January 2023, 12:32


Netflix series The Snow Girl, an adaptation of Javier Castillo's crime-thriller novel, has quickly become a global phenomenon. Set in Malaga, the show released last Friday 27 January, has managed to hook viewers all over the world, becoming one of Netflix's most successful nationally produced shows.

The series, filmed in and around Malaga, showcases some of the area's most well-known streets, buildings and beaches, such as the old Casa Pedro restaurant in El Palo.

SUR, the local newspaper

However the producers and original author Javier Castillo went beyond the streets and buildings to create a more faithful representation of Malaga, with provincial newspaper SUR playing an important role in the adaptation, becoming the centre of the investigation to find missing Amaya.

The SUR logo, as well as those of the newspaper's English and German sisters, is seen throughout the episodes.

Filming for the Netflix series.
Filming for the Netflix series. SUR

Streaming ratings

According to statistics released by entertainment company, which provides global streaming ratings for online platforms, The Snow Girl is the second most-watched series internationally this 30 January 2023, beaten only by Record of Rangnarok.

Despite its short life on the streaming platform, the series ranks higher than other shows which have had extensive marketing campaigns and even Golden Globe nominations.

Its success in Spain was more or less expected, but its status as global phenomenon, placing itself in the top-10 of 60 countries, including Jamaica and Mauritius, was certainly unforeseen.

Spain is not the only country in which The Snow Girl tops the charts. Streamers in Argentina, Hungary, Italy and Uruguay have also pushed the series to the top position in the Netflix rankings.

Choice of Malaga

Javier Castillo was a key proponent in the decision to film in his native Malaga, choosing this part of Spain over Madrid or Barcelona, cities normally used to film Spanish shows that cater to international audiences.

The author posted a heartfelt message on his Instagram to fans all over the world. "Thank you, world. Thank you, family, for making this craziness a reality. Thank you for embracing Mirem's story and accompanying her in the search for Amaya. It's a real dream come true," he said.

He ended his message with "Please, no spoilers in the comments," a plea to his animated international audience to make sure that everyone can enjoy the series for themselves.

After witnessing the show's global success, Castillo made another post, overwhelmed by its international triumph.

"I am shaking and in shock. This has smashed all predictions, and I don't know how to describe it. Number three in the world!"

He exclaimed, not knowing that in a matter of hours, the show would climb the podium once more.

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