The presence of Latin America films in Cannes has grown by 40% since 2009, when Ventana Sur was created by INCAA (Argentina’s film institute) and Marché du Film/Festival de Cannes.

This is one of the achievements of the film market that, now in its 5th edition (Dec 3-6) in Buenos Aires, has become the biggest gathering of its kind for Latin America’s titles.

“Ventana Sur has been instrumental in growing the Latin American presence in Cannes,” said Jérome Paillard, who shares the executive direction of Ventana Sur with Bernardo Bergeret.

“Pablo Giorgelli’s Las Acacias and Michael Rowe’s Año Bisiesto, which started their careers in Buenos Aires, won the Cannes Camera d’Or in 2011 and 2010, respectively.”

Bergeret added: “Other examples of films that had international recognition and started here are Paraisos Artificiales (Mexico), El Tunel de los Huesos (Argentina), Jardín de Amapolas (Colombia), De Martes a Martes (Argentina), Solo (Uruguay), Ausente (Argentina), Los insolitos peces gato (Mexico), Tierra en la Lengua (Colombia), Hijo de Trauco (Chile) and O Palhaco (Brazil).”

Held at UCA (Puerto Madero), Ventana Sur will screen 110 Latin American films this year - on top of the 420 films that are available in the video library.

Blood Window

There is a new section in this edition, dedicated to horror, gore, fantastic and sci-fi movies: Blood Window.

It will present more than 50 films of this genre (produced during 2012 and 2013), including works in progress and projects.

One of the highlights of the sidebar is Juliana Rojas and Marco Dutra’s Good Manners (Boas Maneiras), from Brazil, produced by Dezenove Som e Imagems.

The directors of Cannes 2011’s Un Certain Regard entry Hard Labor (Trabalhar Cansa) now tell the story of a werewolf child raised among men in Sao Paulo.

Global attraction

Close to 1,900 industry professionals will participate this year, with 455 of them coming from outside Latin America.

The total includes around 300 buyers from around the world and 130 international film festivals programmers.

“Before the creation of Ventana Sur, Latin American films participated in the main film markets as independent or alternative productions, especially in markets such as Cannes, Berlin, Toronto and AFM,” said Bergeret. 

“In Ventana Sur, the film productions of the region are in the spotlight, showing the existence of a different LatAm cinema with a wide variety and diversity of genres.”

Producers Network

For its second year in Ventana Sur, Latin America producers will be connected with international sales, distributors, financiers or co-producers thanks to the Producers Network programme.

This is an extension of the successful Cannes programme created to stimulate coproduction and project financing.

“At Ventana, the Producers Network programme has become a platform for projects through strategic alliances with San Sebastian Co-production Forum (Forging Alliances), EAVE (Puentes Europe-Latin America Workshop) and Brazil Cinemundi (International Coproduction Meetings),” said Paillard, who is also the executive director of the Cannes Market.

Post projects

Primer Corte, the section for films still in post-production, is Ventana Sur main attraction.

Among the six films selected this year by Georges Goldenstern, the director of the Cannes Film Festival’s CineFondation, is the Mexican production Open Cage (Los Banistas) from first-time director Max Zunino.

The film focusses on a unexpected relationship between a jobless 65-year-old and a teenage girl. It won at Guadalajara Construye and received a special mention at the Work in Progress Mexico section at Baja International Film Festival.

“The Primer Corte films will compete this year for a larger variety of prizes consisting of post production services and a support for the exhibition and distribution provided by European, Latam and Argentine companies,” added Paillard.