November 1, 2023
Mexico City, Mexico & San Diego, CA
As Masked Republic, the global leader in lucha libre and luchador centered entertainment outside of Mexico, continues to expand its development of “natively transmedia” entertainment properties, the company announced the naming of author, screenwriter, director and voice actor Diego Valenzuela as the company’s first “Head of Storyworlds.”
“As we continue to develop more than a dozen individual IPs all connected in one mass storyworld, we needed to find an individual uniquely suited not only for the rich interconnectivity of the individual properties, but also with the experience, creativity and foresight to lead the build of our unique native transmedia properties – ones with print publishing, film or television and video games all being developed simultaneously”, company President & COO Kevin Kleinrock stated. “We are extremely confident to say that we have found that in Diego Valenzuela and we are honored and excited to have him joining our team”.
Valenzuela‘s creative career began as an author of multiple science fiction novels which have been published in both English and Spanish. In 2016, he joined the team behind Cartoon Network Latam‘s original series Villianous and served as screenwriter and Story Editor for the first season which became a #1 hit on HBO Max in the region. Stepping into the transmedia space he would also write the series’ comic Villanious: Rescate Reducido. Valenzuela also served as screenwriter and Story Editor for the Cartoon Network LatAm’s forthcoming series Rey Mysterio Vs. The Darkness created by Viva Calavera. In the video game industry, he has worked as a writer/narrative designer on games such as IMMORTAL: Gates of Pyre among others. Valenzuela has spent much time inside the Marvel Universe both serving as the Latin American Spanish localization dubbing consultant for Avengers: Infinity War and Ant-Man & The Wasp while also lending his voice talents to both films, as well as playing the Latin American Spanish voice of Razor Fist in Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. With over two dozen feature film Latin American Spanish voiceover credits, some his largest roles have been in two Transformers franchise films: first as Soundwave in Bumblebee and most recently Battletrap in this past summer’s hit Transformers: Rise of the Beasts which became Peru‘s highest-grossing film of all time. Voice acting work in video games for Valenzuela has included the Latin American Spanish versions of top franchises including DOOM, Call of Duty, Halo and Final Fantasy.
“What we are building here at Masked Republic is both so unique yet so universal at the same time”, company founder and CEO Ruben Zamora said. “At the core of all of our entertainment, however, is lucha libre and the spirit of the classic luchador film genre. Diego‘s own passion for lucha libre, rooted in growing up and living in Mexico City, mixed with his vast experience developing stories, in both Spanish and English, across literature, television and gaming are uniquely suiting us as we begin to roll out our universal properties.”
“Joining the Masked Republic team is a dream come true not only as a writer but also as a fan of lucha libre, not to mention a firm believer in its storytelling power and its larger-than-life characters. I can’t wait to mask up and help bring this massive, incredible storyworld to life alongside the many talented artists who are already part of the Masked Republic family”.
Among the previously announced original properties Valenzuela will immediately lead story on are the animated series The Legend of Luchasatu, a collaboration between Masked Republic and Demente Animation of Guadalajara, Mexico; The Luchaverse comic book universe which will enter phase 2 in 2024; and the transmedia development into TV and gaming of the middle-grade bilingual book series based on the Muñoz family of luchadores, WWE‘s Dragon Lee and his brothers AEW & Lucha Libre AAA‘s Rush and Dralistico, coming in 2024 from Future House Publishing. He will also lead several in-development projects slated to be announced throughout 2024 and 2025.
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