Columbian title The Wandering Shadows won the Films In Progress cash and post-production services prize on Sept 25 at the Donostia-San Sebastian International Film Festival (Sept 18-28).
From director Ciro Guerra, The Wandering Shadows (La Sombra Del Caminante) was chosen from the seven, mostly-Argentinean titles participating in this year's initiative.
The prize comes with Euros 9,000 from cultural organization Casa de America and a guarantee of complete post-production services from a handful of sponsors including Madrid Film and Kodak.
A joint initiative between San Sebastian and the Rencontres Cinemas d'Amerique Latine in Toulouse, Films In Progress is just one of a handful of industry markets on the annual calendar specifically targeting Latin American and Spanish cinema.
"Producers have less access to funds and more urgency to attach co-producers and recoup through sales," says producer Teodoro Rios. "Festivals are catching on to this reality and many are launching markets or spaces for industry activity," he adds, pointing to San Sebastian's Sales Office.
The Sales Office has been busy this year, offering daily pitching sessions for new projects and a meeting place for people. However, few actual sales have been announced out of a San Sebastian so far boasting few truly stand-out films.
New deals include:-
- Sogepaq sold Spanish buzz title Take My Eyes (Te Doy Mis Ojos) to Israel's Shani Films and is fielding interest from elsewhere in Europe, the US and Latin America.
- Bavaria Films International made a deal with Primer Plano Group on Cesc Gay's In The City (En La Ciudad) for Argentina, Paraguay and Chile. The film's official screening is Friday night.
- Argentina's Vocacion sold Latin Horizons title Bar El Chino to Switzerland's Kino Latino.
"Film is art, but it is also industry and it needs markets to continue getting made," says Rios, who is also the director of both the Spanish Film Screenings of Lanzarote (Nov 27-29) and the new European Co-Production Forum of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain (March 17-19).
Mexico's growing Iberoamerican Film Market, which runs parallel to the Guadalajara Film Festival, has just appointed a new director, Alejandra Paulin, who says she expects next year's event (March 19-23) to attract as many as 50 buyers from around the world to screen completed films and a new Mexican documentary section.
Paulin says Guadalajara is also considering starting a co-production market for projects in development, similar to the existing Iberoamerican Co-Production Forum which runs alongside the Iberoamerican Film Festival of Huelva, Spain (Nov 9-11).
More than 20 films presented in past editions of the Huelva forum have been completed and theatrically premiered, organisers say.