A Yard of Jackals

Source: Infractor Films

A Yard of Jackals

Mafiz, the five-day industry programme of Spain’s Málaga Film Festival, is a 10-part event showcasing a vast array of market premieres and work-in-progress from Spain and Latin America, with specific days dedicated to remakes and animation.

Some 1,200 industry professionals are expected to attend, according to the festival, 

Of particular interest to international attendees will be the Spanish Screenings Content, the WIPs sections for both Latin America and Spanish projects in their final stages of production, and the Málaga Festival Fund & Co-Production Event (MAFF).

Now its third edition at Málaga, the Spanish Screenings Content is part of the ‘Spain, Audiovisual hub of Europe’ plan, promoted by the Ministry of Culture and Sports, and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation. It marks one of Spain’s largest efforts to date to court international co-productions, and is backed by Spain’s film body ICAA, Spanish Trade Commission ICEX and the San Sebastian and Málaga film festivals.

Some 222 Spanish productions will be shown as part of the Spanish Screenings Content, including 84 market screenings, 62 library titles and trailers and/or film footage for 19 films in post-production and scheduled for release in 2024 and 2025.

The works in progress section consists of two showcases of Latin American and Spanish films in post-production. Included in the seven-title Latin American line-up are: Martin Bulock’s genre feature Criminal Body (Bolivia-Argentina-France); Juan Cáceres’ drama Kaye (Chile-Italy); Diego Figueroa’s A Yard Of Jackals (Chile); and Juan Martín Hsu’s Los Caminantes de la Calle (Argentina-Peru). Out of the total seven films, five countries of the region are represented, with Argentina and Chile participating in three productions each.


Source: Courtesy of Malaga Film Festival

Annabel Aramburu

The Spanish WIP selection has six productions, including Bàrbara Mestanza and Marc Pujolar’s Filthy, Meritxell Campos’ Surfing Einstein, and Enrique Buleo’s Still Life With Ghosts. Three productions come with European countries on board; two with France, and a third with Germany and Italy. 

At the Málaga Festival Fund and Co-Production Event (MAFF), 21 Spanish-language projects will be pitched to potential partners over the five days.There are four projects from Paraguay, which is the country receiving the focus this year. MAFF projects’ budgets range from €130,000 (for a documentary) to €1.5m, and the financing in place is between 20% and 35%. Germany and France are two European countries already involved in some projects. France has four projects.

“We want to be a more useful tool to the industry,” says Mafiz coordinator Annabelle Aramburu. “When we conceived the MAFF seven years ago, we looked for inspiration from European funds such as the Film Fund Luxembourg, Hubert Bals Fund, and Visions Sud Est among others, and we invited them to learn from their investment strategy in Latin American cinema.” 

Nelson Carlo de los Santos Arias’ Pepe, the Dominican Republic feature which won the Silver Bear for best director at this year’s Berlinale, was showcased at MAFF in 2020.

“Some of these funds require a local producer; others don’t,” says Aramburu. “We think the involvement of the European producer generates global efficiency. And think about Spain as a member too of Ibermedia [pan-regional programme and fund]. The aim is to triangulate the financing.”

In previous years, the MAFF offered three-week training courses on financing or international rights to producers to tackle international networking. That is now no longer needed. “Now, Latin American producers are quite ‘empowered’,” continues Aramburu, “so, we are organising conferences and panels such as the Brand Entertainment Workday to boost dialogue between producers, filmmakers, and marketing directors to better understand their respective investments.”

Aramburu underlines the growing interest in the the remake market that will see Mafiz’s Remake Day present  21 titles, while the Animation Hub is briinging together five work-in-progress productions. They includeJosé Corral Llorente’ Norbert, David Baute’s Black Butterflies and Imanol Zinkunegi’s The Invisibles.

“Another aspect with greater relevance this year will be the presence of Spain’s Film Commissions,” concludes Aramburu. “In addition to helping the production and sales of Spanish and Latin American films, we want to highlight the increasing role in the industry they are taking by enticing more and more international filming to Spain.”