The 70th San Sebastian Festival wrapped up its final turn with new deals announced for Spain by A Contracorriente, Bteam and Avalon, a delight among industry players at the site’s first full-fest, blessed by the early autumn sunshine, feeling the international sales business is slowing.
Likewise, the Spanish market and production sector remains active, buoyed by technical house breakthroughs and vibrant drama series production. Five takeaways from this year’s San Sebastian festival, which concludes tomorrow, September 24:
San Sebastian is growing (again)
“There are markets that have improved during COVID-19, others that have not, and San Sebastian is a festival that has improved thanks to its industrial activities,” says Vicente Canales of Film Factory. This build comes from afar, with a film series in progress from 2002, the Europe and Latin America Co-Production Forum from 2012, and the development of Ecosmera Break from 2017 and now the Creative Investors Conference.
There is some form of cross-collecting here. Competition films can explode hot or cold. The 40, often completely unknown, titles brought to market by these four industry areas ensure something of interest to producers and sales agents who are deciding where to premiere their hottest films as well.
“Stories Not to Be Told,” said Evan Diaz, head of international affairs at Filmax, which sells Cesc Gay band comedy, “Stories Not to Be Told,” which premiered Thursday at the San Sebastian Festival as an RTVE concert.
Sales business slows (more)
“There has been a race to catch up with Netflix among streamers, and now people are realizing that this is not necessarily the best business model,” said Trevor Groth of 30West. “And now there’s kind of a pause. I think there’s going to be a push back, a swing toward theatrical distribution and the show.” However, this pause, with uncertainty about when the adult audience en masse will return to theaters, currently appears to be hurting the sales business. French sales agents, who often use San Sebastian to advertise the first sales of hot Venice and Toronto tickets, seemed especially moot.
…. But there was work
“San Sebastián is a launching pad, not a market to close,” says Antonio Saura of Latido Films, noting that he would not sell the world to Rodrigo Sorogoyen’s hot tubes “As Bestas,” a film that opened Le Pacte to 316,000 acceptance sales in France, about 2 million A dollar or more, in gross box office, through late November at Ventana Sur. So San Sebastian has generally cut two ways: sales agent ads, especially in the run-up to the event; Co-production deals where producers reach out to production partners to compensate for a more challenging international sales market on more technical packages. The only exception to this slowdown is Spain. Catalyzed by exceptional box office hits in art-action films – “Alcarrás” and “Lullaby” – major players closed deals in San Sebastian or unveiled bold distribution moves.
*The Spanish distribution rights for the upcoming film “Cerrar los ojos” by legendary Spanish director Victor Ayres (“The Spirit of the Beehive”) have been acquired by Avalon Audiovisual Distribution, whose credits include “Alcarràs”. The film is scheduled to be released next year. Produces Tandem Films, Pecado Films, and Nautilus.
* Distributor – Active Spanish Producer Btem pictures She signed with Film Factory the Spanish rights to Colombian “Kings of the World” Laura Mora, the San Sebastian competition’s world premiere, and part of Toronto’s select industry division.
*Contracorriente movies The Spanish rights to Cuban player Pavel Giroud “The Padilla Affair”, co-produced by Spain’s Ventú Productions and Cuba’s Lia Rodríguez, were bought and sold by Figa Films.
* The rights to international sales of Peter Vaclav’s luxury film “Il Boemo”, which premiered in the world in the main competition, was chosen by Paris loco movieswhich also slammed “Woman at Sea,” new San Sebastian managers dubbed the Paris-based Slot Machine (“Melancholia”).
* “Walls Can Talk”, the latest Spanish production by Carlos Saura (“Raise Ravens,” “Deprisa, Deprisa,” and “Carmen”) was purchased for intended sales by latido movies. Produced by Malvalanda (“Madre” and “The Mole Agent”) and distributed in Spain by Wanda Vision, the film premiered at the RTVE Gala.
*Madrid-based Latido has acquired the rights to sell the documentary film “Tequila, Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll”, produced by Goya Award-winning Helm Alvaro Longoria.
*Movie Factory Entertainment Pick up Roger Zani’s documentary “Mebo, the Moon in a Dish,” which opened the sidebar for Culinary Zinema. It also acquired the global sales rights to “El Otro Hijo”, the debut for Colombia’s Juan Sebastian Quebrada.
*independent sales He won the international level in the first appearance of Emad Al-Ibrahim Dikurdi’s film “The Shomron Story”, which made his debut in the film The New Directors. The film will be released in France via Jour2Fête.
* Danish international sales and assembly group K . level The damned British immigration drama “Great Yarmouth: Temporary Figures” by award-winning Portuguese director Marco Martins has boarded the world premiere of the competition film.
* Emiliano Torres “Runa” Among the most popular films from among the 14 titles selected at the Europe-Latin American Co-Production Forum in San Sebastian, Italian Emmanuel Criales (“L’immensità”) collaborated with Argentine Nicolás Gil Lavedra to produce.
* Ulysses Bora “Bajo Mismo Sol” It landed its first co-production deal before the festival, with Argentine firm Pucará Cine spearheading the project from lead producer Wooden Boat Productions in the Dominican Republic.
* Buenos Aires-based Vega Cinemas and Gualicho Cine from Cordoba, Argentina are collaborating “What to do El Mundo,” From Agustina San Martín, the leading light of the new generation of women’s cinema in Latin America.
* French company Cité Films has stepped up “fire doll” From Chilean Niles Atallah (“Rey”) and “Left Over”, from San Sebastian Gold Shell winning Turkish director Yesim Ustaoglu (“Pandora’s Box”).
One day away from Saturday’s awards, the front-runner to compete for local writers was Fernando Franco’s extraordinary sexual liberation story “The Rite of Spring,” followed by Michael Gurría’s “Sorro,” a study of modern work relationships and the drama of teenage motherhood by Pilar Palomero. La Maternal,” tied with Hong Sangsoo’s four-part “Walk Up” premiere. International critics preferred “La Maternal” and “Walk Up” again (see miscellaneous articles), but also “Il Boemo”, “Great Yarmouth” and “Daughter of Rage”. One thing is for sure. It would be very difficult to get a single acting award now for San Sebastian with acclaimed performances from many of the leading women, for example, “La Maternal”, “Daughter” and “Yarmouth”.