Rome’s Audiovisual International Market (MIA) will host the second edition of Spanish Screenings on Tour, the international showcase of Spain’s audiovisual industry (October 9-13).
Under the motto “Talent and Future”, Spanish Screenings on Tour will showcase a diverse range of feature works at varying stages of production. There will be five projects in development, four works in progress, four feature films as market premieres, 12 trailers of soon-to-be-released films in the Next from Spain — Comin’UP sidebar, and eight films with remake potential.
“The 2023 edition of Spanish Screenings on Tour marks a new step in the strategic internationalisation of our cinema,” says Ignasi Camós, director general of the Spanish Film and Audiovisual Arts Institute (ICAA). “The motto ‘Spanish Audiovisual: Talent and Future’ perfectly encapsulates the presence of the Spanish sector in MIA through a large diversity of formats, genres and production states.”
Rising Spanish audiovisual talent will be on display in two sections: Showcase — Projects in Development and Spanish WIPs.
The former will spotlight five titles: the comedy-drama A Supermarket In Tigaday, the first fiction feature of Paula Bilbao, produced by Amissus Producciones; Jaume Claret’s Strange River, a coming-of-age road movie backed by Zuzú Cinema and Miramemira (co-producers of 2019 Un Certain Regard jury prize winner Fire Will Come), which is a co-production with Germany; Afioco Gnecco and Carolina Yuste’s documentary This Body Of Mine, which explores transgender issues and is produced by Potenza Producciones; Sara Gutierrez’s black comedy Unkind People, produced by Materia Cinema; and Alicia Moncholi’s father-daughter drama Weekends, produced by Oberon Media.
Four titles will feature in the WIPs section. Fantasy drama Ariel is the latest film from Lois Patiño, whose Samsara was a prizewinner this year in the Berlinale’s Encounters section; Filmika Galaika is producing the Spain-Portugal co-production. Maria Trenor is directing animated feature Rock Bottom for Alba Sotorra, which is setting it up as a Poland co-production. From Jordi Nuñez is Valenciana, a drama set in 1990s Spain and produced by Pegatum Transmedia. Finally, Mammut Films’ Where The Silence Passes is a family story directed by Sandra Romero.
The remake market is thriving in Spain and eight local films have been identified as ripe for international adaptations. These include Alvaro Diaz Lorenzo’s 2020 comedy drama Wishlist, about three women who rent a campervan and go on a bucket-list road trip; Gerardo Herrero’s Under Therapy, released earlier this year, which follows three couples and their unusual group counselling session; and Javier Fesser’s 2018 title Champions, a feelgood comedy about a coach who takes on a basketball team whose athletes have learning difficulties.
There are also three thrillers in the mix: David Victori’s Cross The Line, about a previously law-abiding man who goes on a vengeful spree; David M Mateo’s The Restoration, in which a woman is on the hunt for her missing husband; and Daniel Calparsoro’s All The Names Of God, set in the aftermath of a terror attack as a taxi driver is taken hostage.
The sneak previews sidebar of 12 soon-to-be-released films includes Manuel Martin Cuenca’s Andrea’s Love, about a young girl trying to connect with the father who left her mother (sold by Filmax); and Carlota Pereda’s horror film The Chapel, about a young girl trying to find a cure for her sick mother (Filmax). Also playing are Simon Casal’s futuristic thriller Artificial Justice (Latido Films); Isaki Lacuesta’s Saturn Return, which tells the real-life story of influential Spanish indie rock group Los Planetas (Latido Films); and Javier Rebollo’s Close To The Sultan, a drama about Gabriel Veyre, the camera operator who worked with the Lumiere brothers at the turn of the 20th century and taught filmmaking by royal appointment to Morocco’s Sultan Moulay Abd al-Aziz (Latido Films).
The films receiving a market premiere at MIA are Arantxa Echevarria’s coming-of-age story Chinas, A Second Generation Story, set in Madrid’s Chinatown (Latido); Ibai Abad’s Catalonia-set drama Gold Lust (Feelsales); Jumping The Fence, Benito Zambrano’s story of a family man deported from Spain to Guinea and his attempts to return to his wife and daughter (Filmax); and Javier Macipe’s The Blue Star, inspired by the life of Spanish rock star Mauricio Aznar (Film Factory).
In addition to the film programme, Spanish Screenings at Rome MIA also includes three industry talks: ‘Spanish Talent on the Rise’, ‘The Increasing Interest in Co-Producing with Spain’ and a panel on remakes. Networking activities include happy-hour events and one-to-one meetings.
“The event in Rome will be enriched with meeting spaces to foster agreements and synergies between our professional community and the international industry, with particular emphasis on strengthening ties with European partners,” says Camós. “The outstanding presence in MIA and the ambition of this second edition of Spanish Screenings on Tour seeks to strengthen the role of Spain as a reference in the audiovisual sector, consolidating our international positioning after having been guest of honour at the Marché du Film in Cannes — another sign of the great moment that Spanish audiovisual is going through.”
The Spanish Screenings on Tour initiative is framed within the territory’s Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan and is part of the Spanish Screenings XXL umbrella. It includes three more strands: the film market Spanish Screenings Content, which takes place at Malaga Film Festival; Spanish Screenings: Financing & Tech, a meeting point for investors and start-ups at San Sebastian Film Festival; and the year-long Spanish Screenings 360, which also incorporates the creation of the virtual platform of promotion and business PLATFO, and the podcast Spanish Screenings 360. The Podcast.
The aim of Spanish Screenings XXL is to strengthen the country’s role as a European audiovisual hub. It is backed by Spain’s Ministry of Culture and Sport through film body ICAA; the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation through ICEX Espana Exportacion e Inversiones, the country’s Foreign Commerce Institute; and the San Sebastian and Malaga film festivals. The first edition of Spanish Screenings on Tour took place at Buenos Aires’ Ventana Sur in 2022.