Money Heist (La Casa de Papel- Spanish, The House of Paper) is Spanish Television series created by Alex Pina. This series is a crime drama and traces two long-prepared heists led by the Professor (Alvaro Morte). These two heists took place in the Royal Mint of Spain and one on the Bank of Spain. The story is told from a robber’s perspective named Tokyo ( Ursula Cobero ). The narrative is told in a time like fashion and flashbacks, jumping from one time to another, hidden motivations of different characters, and an unreliable narrator to keep the series very complex and interesting. This series has received several awards including an International Emmy Award for Best Drama Series at the 46th International Emmy Awards.
How Did Money Heist Start?
Initially, the series was intended to be told in just two parts, it originally ran 15 episodes on Spanish Network Antena 3 from the 2nd of May 2017 through November 2017, after that Netflix took the global streaming rights of this show. With Netflix taking up this show, they cut the series into twenty-two shorter episodes and released them on the platform. The first part was launched on the 20th of December 2017 on Netflix followed by the second part on the 6th of April 2018. Though the series was meant to be of just two seasons, Netflix renewed the series and increased its budget, the series was stretched for more than sixteen episodes. The series’ part 3 was released on 19th July 2019. The series did not end at this stage as Netflix wanted it to continue, looking at the popularity of Part 4 that had eight episodes was launched on the 3rd of April in the year 2020.
The fifth and final part of the series was renewed in July 2020 with two volumes, the first volume of five episodes was released recently on the 3rd of September and the other five episodes will be released on the 3rd of December. This series was mainly shot in Madrid, Spain, Panama, Thailand, Italy, and Denmark.
The Premise Of The Series
The location is set in Madrid. There is a mysterious man who is known as ‘professor’, he creates a group of eight people and each person has to choose a city’s name for their code-name. They carry out an ambitious plan that involves entering the Royal Mint of Spanish and escaping with E984 million. They take around 67 people hostage inside the Royal Mint of Spain and the team plays for 11 days, printing money as they deal with the police forces. The events succeeding the initial plan, the team was forced out of hiding and later they find themselves preparing for another heist in the Bank of Spain.
Main Characters Of The Series
1. Silene Oliveria (Tokyo) played by Ursula Corbero- a runaway teenager turned robber who was scouted by the Professor. She was portrayed as an unreliable narrator.
2. Sergio Marquina ( The Professor ) played by Alvaro Morte- Mastermind of the events who created the group. He is Berlin’s younger brother.
3. Raquel Murillo ( Lisbon ) played by Itziar Ituno- inspector of the National Police Corps, was put in charge of the case but then joins the group in the 3rd part of the series.
4. Andres de Fonollosa (Berlin) played by Pedro Alonso is a jewelry thief and professor’s older brother, also the second in command of the events.
5. Austin Ramos (Moscow) played by Paco Tous- a former miner turned criminal. He is also Denver’s father
6. Agata Jimenez (Nairobi) played by Alba Flores- someone who is an expert in counterfeiting and forgery, in charge of printing the cash and overseeing the melting of Gold.
7. Anibal Cortes (Rio) played by Miguel Herran- a young hacker who is also Tokyo’s boyfriend.
8. Ricardo/ Daniel Ramos (Denver) played by Jamie Lorente- he is Moscow’s son who joins the heist
9. Monica Gaztambide (Stockholm) played by Easter Acebo- a hostage who is Arturo Roman’s secretary and mistress, who is carrying his child out of wedlock. During the robbery, she falls in love with Denver.
10. Alison Parker played by Maria Pedraza- a hostage and daughter of a British Ambassador
11. Arturo Roman played by Enrique Arce- a hostage and also the former director of the Royal Mint of Spain.
12. Mirko Dragic (Helsinki) played by Darko Peric- veteran Serbian soldier and cousin of Oslo
13. Julia (Manila) played by Belen Cuesta- godchild of Moscow and Denver’s childhood friend who joins the group and poses as one of the hostages during the robbery of the Bank of Spain.
14. Marivi Fuentes played by Kiti Manver- she is Raquel’s mother
15. Bogotis played by Hovik Keuchkerian – an expert in metallurgy and joins the team during the robbery of the bank of Spain.
16. Jakov (Marseille) played by Luka Peros – a member of the team who joins the robbery of Bank of Spain and then serves as liaison
17. Colonel Luis Tamayo played by Fernando Cayo- a member of Spanish intelligence
18. Martin Berrote (Palermo) played by Rodrigo de la Serna- an Argentine friend of Berlin who planned the robbery of the Bank of Spain
19. Alicia Sierra played by Najwa Nimri- pregnant inspector of the National Police Corps who is put in charge of the case after the departure of Raquel
What Is In The Mind Of The Professor And Berlin?
The series can be termed as a subversion of the heist genre. While most of the heist movies are told from a rational male counterpart, Money Heist reframes the heist narrative by giving it a strong Spanish Identity and telling the story from a female perspective through the character Tokyo.
A special video was released by Netflix where the Professor played by Alvaro Morte and Berlin played by Pedro Alonso can be seen talking about their present state of mind and this is Heist’s final season. Alvaro Morte mentioned despite the ending of Money Heist by its upcoming season five he is not mourning. This show was supposed to end within two seasons with the robbery of the Royal Mint of Spanish but at that time this crime show was not the world’s most favorite. After the huge success on the global platform, Netflix renewed another season with a different heist in the Bank of Spain.
In the video, it can be seen how Alvaro Morte is talking to Pedro Alonso about why this end did not affect him much. He stated “ For me, it is like half the process, because when we finished the second season, where things were supposed to end, that’s where I went through big mourning. Because in theory, that was not going to have any kind of continuity. It ended there. Laso, they were two very well-closed series, very well rounded up and definitely to end”.
Alvaro also shared what his mind was going through when the team of Money Heist ruined for the thor season after Netflix decided to renew it and what are his feelings about this final “finale”, “ when they told us, we are coming back, it was like getting back a loved one that you have lost once. That is why my attitude during these three seasons was more from the perspective to enjoy, having a second chance with the character”.
This is one of the most famous and loved crime drama series around the globe. This Spanish origin series made its way to conquer people’s hearts with forthcoming seasons. Initially, it should have been ended by season two but after Netflix took over, the series finale is going to be season five that will come in two volumes. The Italian anti-fascist song “Bella Ciao” which has been played multiple times in the series became the summer hit across Europe in 2018. It is also the most-watched non-English Language series and one of the most-watched series overall on Netflix.