Source: Ventana Sur


The 15th edition of Ventana Sur wrapped over the weekend with record attendance of more than 3,500 as prizes were handed out and deals concluded. However there was concern over the future of market co-host INCAA following inflammatory comments about public arts funding by incoming Argentinian president Javier Milei.

The president-elect, a fan of firebrand second term US presidential hopeful Donald Trump and ousted Brazilian premier Jair Bolsonaro, takes office next week (December 10) and has promised to undo decades of stagnation.

President-elect alarms industry

Milei has said he wants to reduce the state and public funding in the South American country. His threats on the campaign trail to dismantle Argentina’s public film and TV body INCAA, which hosts Ventana Sur with Cannes’s Marché du Film, and close down the national public broadcaster did not go down well once the market got underway.

Cannes Film Festival delegate general Thierry Frémaux argued during his annual masterclass for the need to protect INCAA.

However industry sources took heart from the appointment last week of stage and music producer Leonardo Cifelli as national culture minister, under-secretary of heritage Liliana Barela, National Theater director Gonzalo Demaría, and Kirchner Cultural Center director Valeria Ambrosio – all of whom hail from prestigious cultural backgrounds, allaying fears to some degree.

Latido, Sideral deals

Meanwhile business between Europe and Latin America got done in Buenos Aires. In early deals Latido Films acquired Alejandro Agresti’s What We Wanted To Be (Lo Que Quisimos Ser), a production of regular partners Fernando Sokolowicz at Aleph Media and Gastón Duprat.

Sideral, the new production, distribution and sales branch of Spain’s Elamedia Estudios, boarded Marco Caltieri’s feature debut and Blood Window selection Capital Variable.

And Colombian sales and distribution company Doc:Co kicked off its activities by taking international rights to Patricia Correa’s feature documentary debut Otra Piel, co-produced by Colombia’s Romeo, 235 Digital, and Sonata Films alongside Chile’s Gabriela Sandoval’s Cine Matriz from Chile.

Myriad of awards 

Ventana Sur also handed out its numerous annual awards offering development and post-production funds, and attendance at partner events such as Mifa-Annecy, Quirino, Pixelatl, or Sitges and Bifan, underlining Ventana Sur’s significance as an international stepping stone for Latin American content and fresh talent.

The array of sponsored prizes – more than 60 this year – additionally served as reminder of the market’s value to Latin American cinema.

Argentinian José María Cicala took four awards at Blood Window Screenings section with horror film Charming (Encantador) claiming prizes from SofiaFilms, chemistry, Lahaye Media, and Hypnotic VFX.

Cicala’s fourth feature is produced by the filmmaker’s Shock House Films, whose previous film Lennons launched in October, and follows a genial young man who leads a simple life caring for his mother, working at the video store and town clinic, and collecting dolls. One by one women start to disappear.

Mexican filmmaker Rigoberto Perezcano’s fourth feature, the romantic social drama Lovers Fare Goodbye took the Cine+Plus Award in Premier Corte’s Copia Final, another of the key WIPs showcases at the Buenos Aires market.

The film depicts Elida, a young woman living in the valley of Oaxaca who is forced into an arranged marriage with an older man who has no intention of honouring tradition. Cristina Velasco Lozano produces for Mexico’s Paloma Negra Films. Perezcano’s previous film Carmín Tropical won best film at Morelia International Film Festival.

A production of Costa Rica’s Substance and Spain’s PlayLab, Memories Of A Burning Body won Primer Corte’s WIP section. It is the second feature from Antonella Sudassassi after her multiple award winner The Awakening Of The Ants. The film is a lyrical portrait of Ana (68), Patricia (69), and Mayela (71) who finally get to enjoy their sexuality, having never discussed the matter wearlier in life with their mothers, sisters, and daughters.

The first call projects were announced for Ibermedia Next, a new initiative under the umbrella of pan-regional funding organisation Ibermedia devoted to VR audiovisual content with an emphasis on open source tools and disruptive technologies.

Out of 14 co-production beneficiaries, 10 come from Spanish producers in co-production with partners from Mexico (four), Chile (three), and one from each of Argentina, Bolivia and Ecuador.

Among the projects are El Origen de la Experiencia, produced by Gael García Bernal and Diego Luna’s outfit La Corriente del Golfo with Spain’s Cornelius Films. Mexican actors will also voice characters in the VR take on Mexican mysticism.

Sofía, an animation-live-action hybrid title to be directed by Isabel Coixet, is a co-production between Spain’s Atlántika Films, Argentina’s Rudo Company, and Peru’s Ambiro Producciones.

Titan-Tofu is an adventure comedy series produced by Spain’s Uniko –the Basque producers of adult animation GKids acquisition Unicorn Wars – in co-production with Mattegraphics from Ecuador.

The Proyecta Prizes went to Marcel Beltrán’s documentary Moa (Cub-Bra-DR) which won 2022 Locarno Open Doors, and Camila Zavala Chocano’s Tell Me How Much You Love Me (Per), a coming-of-age tale about a nine-year who tries to heal his manic-depressive mother. Bernard Lessa’s The Cuban Doctor took the Paradiso award, a LGTBI drama following a doctor who is asked to leave Bolsonaro’s Brazil and return to Cuba.

Animation! main awards went to features If I Die and Seed. Produced by Brazil’s Apto122, and directed and produced by Spanish Esther Vital, If I Die is a stop-motion documentary project revolving around the life of Inês Etienne, the only survivor and witness of the House of Death, a clandestine detention and centre of and torture during the Brazilian dictatorship (1964-1985).

Family title Seed follows a small sprout that germinates unexpectedly and becomes obsessed with discovering what type of plant he is. Andrés Sehinkman and Federico Carlini are directing for Argentina’s Planta Alta.

2023 Ventana Sur awards winners

Primer Corte 

Cine + Plus Award
Lovers Fare Goodbye (Mex), dir. Rigoberto Perezcano

Sofía Films Award
Lovers Fare Goodbye

NMF / Color Front Award
Seeds (Col-Sp), dir. Eliana Niño

La Mayor Cine
The Drownings (Ec-Uru), dir. Juan Sebastián Jácome, Víctor Mares

Trieste Film Festival
Lovers Fare Goodbye

Lovers Fare Goodbye

VISOM Digital
The Cuban Doctor (Bra), dir. Bernard Lessa
Lovers Fare Goodbye

Stone Milk
Gloria (Bra), dir. Felipe Sholl

WIP Projecto Paradiso
The Cuban Doctor

Le Film Francias / Cannes Market News
The Drownings

Copia Final

Cine + Plus Award
Memories Of A Burning Body (CR-Sp), dir. Antonella Sudasassi Furniss

Trieste Film Festival
Memories Of A Burning Body

Le Film Francias / Cannes Market News
Memories Of A Burning Body

IFFM / Iberoamerican Film Festival Of Miami
Memories Of A Burning Body

Special mention
Tiguer (DR), dir. Jose Maria Cabral


Netflix Award
Impermanentes (Col)

Callback (Arg)


WEMW (When East Meets West)
Dime cuánto me quieres (Per), dir. Camila Zavala Chocano

Moa (CR) Dir. Marcel Beltrán

Blood Window Screenings

La Meyor Cine
Do Not Enter (Par), dir. Hugo Cardozo

Sofia Films 
Charming (Arg), dir. José María Cicala


La Haye Media

 Fant. Latina / Women in Fan
The Woman Who Dreamt Underwater (Mex), dir. Ale García, Carla Sierra

Blood Window Lab 

Sitges – International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia
Spittle (Arg), dir. Martín Desalvo

Bifan/NAFF Award
Don’t Follow Me (Mex), dir. Ximena García Lecuona

Terror Molins Film Festival Award
The Woman Who Dreamt Underwater (Mex)
At The End Of The Night (Col)


MIFA/Annecy Awards

If I Die (Bra-Sp) Dir. Esther Vital. Prod. Apto122
Seed (Arg), dirs. Andrés Sehinkman, Federico Carlini. Prod. Planta Alta

TV series

Bolla (Mex) Dir. Ariadna Galaz, Jorge Peralta. Prod. Calladitos
Knightmares (Mex), dir. Juan Sotelo, prod. Demente Studio

Special mention - MIFA Annecy
Tales of Mungará, (Bra), dirs. Nara Aragão, Renata Roberta Azevedo, prod. Carnaval Filmes
Lucila (Chil), dir. Bernardita Ojeda, prod. Maria Wood Producciones / Pájaro

Punto Género

Gender - DAC Award
Mamá Lulú (Mex-USA-Hon)

APIMA Gender Award
Corações solitários (Bra-Fr)

Doc Sur

APCLAI / Trieste Festival
Los Mariachis Perdidos (Mex)

Corações Solitários (Bra-Fr)


Best Art Award
Hollow Flowers (Arg)

Best Design Award
Tempus Vitae (Arg).