La Fortuna, the AMC+ drama based on the real-life discovery of a 200-year-old shipwreck off the coast of Spain, will have viewers stunned with its high-paced mixture of courtroom drama, flashbacks of adventure on high seas, complicated friendship and a good o’ fashion treasure search.
Told in just six episodes, written and directed by Oscar-winner Alejandro Amenábar, the bilingual (Spanish and English) drama takes viewers to the lands of Madrid, across Spain and America, as the fight for sunken treasure is not what it seems.
What starts as a simple discovery, takes viewers to the high seas of the 1800’s and the courtrooms of today in an international battle for gold, legacy and pride when Frank Wild, a treasure hunter (Stanely Tucci) come across what initially appears to be a pile of shells but turns out to be a vast cache of gold and silver coins, valued at half-a-billion dollars. Dating back from a 19th-centurary Spanish galleon sunk by the British near Gibraltar in 1804, La Fortuna is adapted from the graphic novel El tesoro del Cisne Negro (The Treasure of the Black Swan).
At first, the characters at play seem simple – Frank Wild, a money-hungry-driven treasure hunter, another his ruthless legal counsel and Jonas Pierce (Clarke Peters) a maritime lawyer out to return their bounty to its rightful owner.
In honor of this globetrotting thriller coming to AMC+ on January 20th, The Koalition spoke to Clarke Peters about the uniqueness of the project, the complicated and fractured relationship between Frank and Jonas and standing on what he believes to be the right-side justice.
Clarke, who is selective about his projects jumped at the chance to star in this bilingual drama because of the rich history the story is based on. “It was the story itself, the plausibility of it, [and founding] out later on that something similar actually did happen.” From the very beginning, ‘the story got me [as well as] the quality of Jonas’ perspective of life.”
“In his mouths comes questions we should all be asking ourselves: Whatever happened to respect? Whatever happened to humility? Whatever happened to generosity? Whatever happened to patience? Can we agree to disagree without having to feel like we’ve got to eliminate somebody? All of those kinds of things made me want to play him in the series?”
La Fortuna follows rookie Spanish diplomat Alex Ventura (Alvaro Mel) and his passionate coworker, Lucia Vallarts (Ana Polvorosa), as they battle with the arrogant underwater explorer Frank Wild (Stanley Tucci) after he discovered (or maybe just recovered) an estimated $500 million worth of gold coins near Gibraltar from a Spanish galleon sunk by the British Navy in 1804 and brought it back to Atlanta — refusing to return it to Spain, which considers itself the bounty’s rightful territorial owner.
In their quest for justice, Alex and Lucia turn to internationally acclaimed maritime law attorney Jonas Pierce to face off in court with Wild on behalf of the Spanish Ministry of Culture. However, nothing is as it seems including Frank and Jonas relationship who many years ago were once best friends and treasure hunters along with Pierce’s brother — whose death on one of their expeditions drove a wedge between the two men.
Instead of choosing to walk away from helping Alex and Lucia, Jonas decides to help them fight but is it for revenge or a deeper meaning?
“The issue of the case is bigger than our relationship. The issue in the case [is about] culture being taken away from people who it belongs to, who will have no access to it. [This is a] culture that might feed a young mind [or] might soothe an old person’s heart. Those issues are far bigger than the fact there was a terrible loss. The case itself is what is far more important and larger. [If you look at where and when the relationship went wrong] with Frank and Jonas, we were kids following a dream until [that] tragic incident but the value of that dream [and] the value within that dream didn’t change for either one of us. It was different sides of the same coin.”
In defense of Jonas taking the case, Clarke states, ” it’s not totally about [Frank] if it had been somebody else coming to me with that same case, I would have followed [it]. The only thing with Frank being part of it, it just upped the stakes [and] made me hungrier to make sure we win it for the right reasons.”
To learn more about La Fortuna and Clarke Peter’s relationship with Stanely Tucci’s Frank Wild, check out our full interview in the video above. Also check out our interview with Álvaro Mel about bring Álex Ventura to life.