Ignasi Guardans, the new director general of Spain’s Institute of Cinematography and Audiovisual Arts (ICAA), has announced plans for a new $125m (€90m) film funding scheme.
The scheme aims to tie together script development with a project’s success at the box office and through digital distribution. Guardans, who has been in the role for two months, outlined plans in a Ministry Order, which is issued to change legislation in Spain. It went has now been put out to the film industry for consultation
It is hoped that the scheme will boost the Spanish film industry, which has seen box office figures fall and suffered from rampant copyright piracy over recent years. It also aims to address criticism that the government has wasted funding supporting films that have failed to draw audiences back to the cinema.
Under new plans, producers will receive up to 50% of the budget of a film, or up to 75% of their investment in the project, as long as the amount does not exceed $2.7m (€2m). That money can go towards every stage of the project from development (including finding locations, structuring the funding and working on the improvement of the script) through production to exhibition.
“The funds will apply to co-productions as well, but it is the Spanish producer who would receive the money,” confirmed Guardans.
Only 12 projects each year will receive the development grant, and the ICAA recommends producers combine the new fund with other development and production funding available within Spain and elsewhere.
For exhibition, a points system will be introduced to allocate funding based on a film’s box office success, DVD and downloads, and its performance on the festival circuit. The ICAA is still discussing how this will be calculated
Following the consultation, the plans will have to be approved by the European Commission and then by a localcommittee, headed by Guardans, but it is hoped it will be introduced by October.