C. Tangana’s “ESTA AMBICIÓN DESMEDIDA” to Screen at Guadalajara International Film Festival

C. Tangana’s ambition is going global…

The 33-year-old Spanish rapper, singer and songwriter and Little Spain will screen ESTA AMBICIÓN DESMEDIDA, a film documenting C. Tangana’s Sin Cantar Ni Afinar Tour, at the Guadalajara International Film Festival, which kicks off June 7 at the at the Telmex Auditorium.

C. Tangana

This is the first time the documentary will hit North America.

The film, directed by Little Spain, follows C. Tangana for more than four years and reflects on the creation process of his album El Madrileño, as well as the launch of the Sin Cantar Ni Afinar World Tour in Spain and Latin America.

ESTA AMBICIÓN DESMEDIDA premiered at the 71st edition of the San Sebastian Film Festival, and became the third highest-grossing documentary in the country in 2023.

b-mount Boards Camilo Becerra & Sofía Paloma Gómez’s “Maybe It’s True What They Say About Us”

Camilo Becerra and Sofía Paloma Gómez’s latest project has gained a new production partner.

b-mount, Yasuo Nakajima and Mariona Carrera’s Barcelona and Tokyo-based company, has boarded the Chilean filmmaking duo’s Maybe It’s True What They Say About Us,.

Camilo Becerra and Sofía Paloma Gómez’s  Maybe It’s True What They Say About UsThe film was screening as part of the San Sebastian Film Festival’s San Sebastián WIP Latam competition.

b-mount join the co-production between Carlos Núñez and Gabriela Sandoval at Chile’s Storyboard Media, Cecilia Salim at Argentina’s Murillo Cine (“Chaco”) and Lucía van Gelderen at Argentina’s Morocha Films (“El Cinco”) alongside Becerra’s production venture La Jauría Comunicaciones.

Emilio Mayorga serves as executive producer. International sales for the film are handled by Lucia and Julia Meik’s Meikincine.

“This project is extraordinary for us since it’s our first involvement in fiction production; formerly, we’ve provided shooting services to international productions,” Nakajima told Variety.

“Why did we make this initial step? Easy: the absolute trust that Gabriela Sandoval and the rest of the production team inspired in us as well as this emotive and disturbing story of how evil can unexpectedly seep into our homes,” said Nakajima.

“We are very excited to be finalizing this magnificent co-production with b-mount for Maybe It’s True What They Say About Us, and at the same time, reaping what we sowed in the WIP at San Sebastián 2023, where we first met post-screening of the First Cut, sealing our co-production months later,” said Carlos Núñez and Gabriela Sandoval from Storyboard Media.

“This collaboration not only allows us to complete the film but also to enhance and amplify the film’s reach through b-mount’s experience in the European and Asian territories, alongside our sales agent, Meikincine,” they added.

The thriller explores generational trauma, accountability and the fragile side of relationships when psychiatrist Ximena (Aline Kuppenheim) is reunited with her estranged daughter Tamara (Camila Roeschmann), who recently escaped a cult embattled with accusations of human sacrifice.

Busy raising a teenager (Julia Lübbert), the sudden appearance shakes family foundations to the core as the three struggle to reconnect in the wake of parallel tragedies, loosely inspired by the shocking crimes committed by Chile’s Colliguay Sect.

“This sinister space is one of the things we’re interested in representing in the film,” Becerra and Paloma Gómez said in a statement.

They added: “To show how something so irrational and incomprehensible can knock on the door of any family. Understanding how such an extreme situation is reached is almost impossible. All certainties prove futile when we face the monster that suddenly lives in our own house.”

Katina Medina Mora to Direct Her First English-Language Film, “Freeland”

Katina Medina Mora is embracing a freeland

The 43-year-old Latina film, television and theatre director and Emily in Paris helmer will direct Freeland, her first English-language film.

Katina Medina MoraThe film will be co-written with Chilean scribe Julio Rojas, creator of podcast sensation Caso 63 and a co-writer on Pablo Fendrik’s El Refugio.

Nicolas Celis, who earned an Academy Award nod for producing Roma, will serve as the lead producer of Freeland.

The project was put together by producer Nestor Hernández, a former Sony and HBO development executive for Latin America who attended the San Sebastian Film Festival in September to present the project.

MadAvenue PR director Eva Herrero serves as an executive producer on the film.

“We have long been following Katina Medina Mora’s remarkable career and her impressive accomplishments over such a short time span,” remarked Celis who has been attending Iberseries to take part in a panel and to meet with contacts.

“I am also more than thrilled to be working with Rojas and alongside Hernández,” he said. “At Pimienta Films, we are increasingly focused on producing globally appealing films with talented and influential creators like Katina,” he noted.

“Nicolas is not only one of the most recognized producers in Mexico, but for me, is one of the few whose work has both narrative and artistic value.” said Medina Mora, adding: “Collaborating with him is something I have been waiting for a long time. I am certain that his involvement with ‘Freeland’ will bring many strengths to the project.”

In “Freeland,” based on Rojas’ eponymous novel, Nicolas, a 17-year-old living in a seemingly idyllic village, shocks his school when he asserts that the Earth is round in a world where a creationist revolution has rewritten history. He’s sent to a reeducation reformatory called Hotel Roma, where he falls in love with Hipatia, the daughter of political prisoners. Together, they plan to escape to Freeland’s border in a totalitarian dystopia of the mid-2030s.

“It is an honor for me that Pimienta and Nicolas Celis have chosen to lead this project. I have been a great admirer of the work of Julio, Katina and Nicolas himself for years. I feel like I am part of something truly unique,” said Hernandez.

Jaione Camborda Wins Golden Shell for Best Film at San Sebastian Film Festival 

It’s a Golden period for Jaione Camborda.

The San Sebastian Film Festival awarded the 40-year-old Spanish filmmaker’s O Corno (The Rye Horn) with the Golden Shell for Best Film.

Jaione CambordaSet on an island off the coast of Galicia in 1971, the film tells the story of a woman who earns a living harvesting shellfish. She’s also known on the island for helping other women in childbirth but has to flee and try to cross the border into Portugal after an unexpected event.

Camborda, who was born in San Sebastian, is the fourth woman to win the Golden Shell after The Kings Of The World by Colombian director Laura Mora last year, Blue Moon by Alina Grigore from Romania in 2021, and Beginning by Georgian director Dea Kulumbegashvili in 2020.

Additionally, the Best Screenplay Award went to María Alché and Benjamín Naishtat for Puan (Argentina-Italy-Germany-France-Brazil).

The Silver Shell for Best Leading Performance fell ex aequo upon Marcelo Subiotto and Tatsuya Fuji for their respective roles in Puan, by Alché and Naishtat, and Great Absence (Japan), by Kei Chika-ura, while the Silver Shell for Best Supporting Performance went to Hovik Keuchkerian for his character in Un amor (Spain) by Isabel Coixet.

Here’s the full list of winners:

San Sebastian 2023 Award Winners List

Golden Shell For Best Film
O Corno (The Rye Horn)
Jaione Camborda (Spain)
Spain – Portugal – Belgium

Special Jury Prize
Kalak
Isabella Eklöf (Sweden)
Denmark – Sweden – Norway – Finland – Greenland – Netherlands

Silver Shell For Best Director
Tzu-Hui Peng, Ping-Wen Wang (Taiwan)
Chun Xing (A Journey In Spring)
Taiwan

Silver Shell For Best Leading Performance
Marcelo Subiotto (Argentina)
Puan
Argentina – Italy – Germany – France – Brazil

Tatsuya Fujo (Japan)
Great Absence
Japan

Silver Shell For Best Supporting Performance
Hovik Keuchkerian (Lebanon)
Un Amor
Spain

Jury Prize For Best Screenplay
María Alché, Benjamín Naishtat (Argentina)
Puan
Argentina – Italy – Germany – France – Brazil

Jury Prize For Best Cinematography
Nadim Carlsen (Denmark)
Kalak
Denmark – Sweden – Norway – Finland – Greenland – Netherlands

New Directors Award
Bahadur The Brave
Diwah Shah (India)
India

Horizontes Award
El Castillo (The Castle)
Martín Benchimol (Argentina)
Argentina – France – Spain

Zabaltegi-Tabakalera Award
El Auge del Humano 3 (The Human Surge 3)
Eduardo Williams (Argentina)
Argentina – Portugal – Netherlands – Taiwan – Brazil – Hong Kong – Sri Lanka – Perú

Special Mention: El Juicio (The Trial)
Ulises de la Orden (Argentina)
Argentina – Norway – France – Italy

Nest The Mediapro Nest Awards
Amma Ki Katha
Nehal Vyas (India)

Special Mention: Entre Les Autres
Marie Falys (Belgium)

Culinary Zinema Best Film Award
La Passion de Dodin Bouffant (The Pot Au Feu)
Tran Anh Hung (Vietnam)

Eusko Label Prize
First Prize: Latxa
Mike Urretabizkaia (Spain)

Second Prize: Soroborda
Paolo Tizón (Perú)

Irizar Basque Film Award
El Sueño De La Sultana / Sultana’s Dream
Isabel Herguera (Spain)

City Of Donostia / San Sebastian Audience Award
La Sociedad De La Nieve / Society Of The Snow
J.A. Bayona (Spain)

City Of Donostia / San Sebastian Audience Award For Best European Film
Io Capitano / I’m Captain
Matteo Garrone (Italy)

TCM Youth Award
La Estrella Azul / The Blue Star
Javier Macipe (Spain)

WIP Latam Industry Award
Los Domingos Mueren Más Personas / Most People Die On Sundays
Iair Said (Argentina)

Egeda Platino Industria Award For The Best WIP Latam
Los Domingos Mueren Más Personas / Most People Die On Sundays
Iair Said (Argentina)

WIP Latam Industry Award
Mannequins (Wt)
Michael Fetter Nathansky (Germany)

WIP Europa Awards
Mannequins (Wt)
Michael Fetter Nathansky (Germany)

XII Europe-Latin America Co-Production Forum Best Project Award
Todo Esto Eran Mangas / These Were All Fields
Daniela Abad Lombana (Italy)

Dale! Award (Development Latin America-Europe)
Little War
Barbara Sarasola-Day (Argentina)

Artekino International Prize
Los Días Libres / The Days Off
Lucila Mariani (Argentina)

Elamedia Euskadi Post-Production Award
After The Night, The Night
Naomi Pacifique (Switzerland – Netherlands)

Zinemaldia Startup Challenge Award
Best European Project
Hyperate.Io
Germany 

Best Spanish Project
Witscript
Spain

Ibaia-Bilibin Circular Award
Yo Terrateniente
Rodrigo Demirjian
Produced By: Tourmalet Films, Ah! Cine
(Spain – Argentina)

Dogwoof Award
December
Grzegorz Paprzycki
Produced By: Telemark, Just A Moment
(Poland Lithuania)

Ibaia-Elkargi Award
Pulso
Victoria Alvares, Quentin Delaroche
Produced By: Revoada Produçoes
(Brazil)

RTVE – Another Look Award
The Royal Hotel
Kitty Green (Australia)

Special Mention: All Dirt Roads Taste Of Salt
Raven Jackson (Usa)

Cooperación Española Award
La Estrella Azul / The Blue Star
Javier Macipe (Spain)

Euskadi Basque Country 2030 Agenda Award
Bâtiment 5 / Les Indésirables
Ladj Ly (France)

Dunia Ayaso Award
Creatura
Elena Martín Gimeno (Spain)

Special Mention: Mientras Seas Tú / Mentre Siguis Tu / While You’re Still You
Claudia Pinto Emperador (Venezuela)

Donostia Awards
Hayao Miyazaki
Javier Bardem
Víctor Erice

Zinemira Award
Paco Sagarzazu

Fipresci Award
Fingernails
Christos Nikou (Greece)

Feroz Zinemaldia 2023 Award
Un Amor
Isabel Coixet (Spain)

Euskal Gidoigileen Elkartea Award
Isabel Herguera (Spain), Gianmarco Serra (Italy)
“El Sueño De La Sultana / Sultana’s Dream” (Spain – Germany)

Sebastiane 2023 Award
20.000 Especies De Abejas / 20,000 Species Of Bees
Estibaliz Urresola (Spain)

Special Mention: Gabi, 8 Urtetik 13 Urtera / Gabi: Between Ages 8 And 13
Engeli Broberg (Sweden)

Lurra – Greenpeace Award
Aku Wa Sonzai Shinai / Evil Does Not Exist
Ryusuke Hamaguchi (Japan) 

Signis Award
All Dirt Roads Taste Of Salt
Raven Jackson (Usa)

Ateneo Guipuzcoano Award
Great Absence
Kei Chika-Ura (Japan)

Carla Simón Receives Spain’s National Cinematography Award

Carla Simón has received one of the highest honors bestowed by Spain’s Ministry of Culture.

The 36-year-old Spanish filmmaker, whose sophomore film Alcarràs clinched the 72md Berlinale Golden Bear last year, received the 2023 National Cinematography Award.

Carla SimonOn hand to present the award in a ceremony held at the San Sebastian Film Festival was Miguel Iceta, Spain’s Minister of Culture and Sports, who first addressed Simón in Catalan before switching to Spanish: “With only two feature films, you have left your mark on the recent history of cinema in our country: a short but undisputed trajectory in terms of its strength and personality, recognized both nationally and internationally. A career that is nothing but the promise of a much longer and fruitful one.”

“This award, if you’ll allow me the audacity, is also for all the women who accompany you, for all your professional colleagues and peers, for all those women who, with your example and your struggle, are making the world of cinema a more equal, diverse, and better place,” said Iceta, who as an aside, also pointed out that Spain’s women’s soccer team, recently crowned world champions, had just won in Sweden.

However, out of the more than 40 times the award has been given out, no more than 14 women in the film industry have received the award. “We have some way to go before we achieve gender parity,” he noted.

The prize, granted by the Institute of Cinematography and Audiovisual Arts (ICAA), an organization affiliated with the Ministry of Culture and Sports, comes with a prize of €30,000 ($31,800).

Carla Simon“Finally, there are more women involved in filmmaking, and we are witnessing a timid democratization of our profession. There are ways of working that are already considered obsolete and stories that had never been told before. However, at the same time, films and works are still being censored for political reasons, or we self-censor to be politically correct,” Simón stated in a highly applauded speech where she thanked her family, friends and all that have supported her in her brief but brilliant career.

Only 36 years old, Simón quickly caught the film world’s attention in 2017 with her autobiographical debut feature, Summer 1993, sweeping Berlin’s First Feature Award and Generation Kplus Grand Prix.

It went on to be selected to represent Spain in the Oscars, beating Pablo Berger’s Abracadabra and Salvador Calvo’s 1898, Our Last Men in the Philippines for the honor.

In her speech, Simón stressed the need to safeguard independent cinema, which she described as having “heart and daring,” emphasizing that it necessitates “time, nurturing, contemplation and precision.” She expressed her heartfelt gratitude to the female filmmakers who blazed a trail in the industry, including notable figures such as the Belgian icons Agnès Varda and Chantal Akerman, as well as their Spanish counterparts Josefina Molina, Pilar Miró, Icíar Bollaín and Isabel Coixet.

She is currently preparing to shoot Romería, the third part of the trilogy she begun with Summer 1993, by next summer. She is next planning a flamenco musical for her fourth feature.

Javier Bardem to Receive Donostia Award at San Sebastian Film Festival

Javier Bardem will be feted in Northern Spain…

The San Sebastian Film Festival will honor the 54-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning actor with its prestigious Donostia Award at its 71st edition, running September 22 — 30.

Javier BardemBardem will receive the career achievement prize on Friday, September 22 at the Kursaal Auditorium, 30 years after his first visit to the Festival for the competition screening of Bigas Luna’s film Golden Balls in 1993.

An image of Bardem will also serve as the official poster of this year’s festival.

Bardem is one of Spain’s most prominent cinematic names, with over 70 screen credits. He picked up an Academy Award, Golden Globe, and a BAFTA for his turn in the Coen Brothers’ neo-western No Country for Old Men.

Bardem was last at San Sebastian in 2021 with the workplace comedy-drama The Good Boss from Fernando León de Aranoa. The film was Spain’s submission for the international Oscar race.

Later this year, Bardem returns for the second film in Denis Villeneuve’s Dune series, where he plays the character Stilgar alongside Timothée Chalamet and Zendaya.

Last year, the lifetime achievement award was handed to David Cronenberg and Juliette Binoche. Other previous filmmakers to have received the Donostia Award include Francis Ford Coppola, Woody Allen, Oliver Stone, Agnès Varda, Hirokazu Koreeda, and Costa-Gavras.

Colombian filmmaker Laura Mora clinched the Golden Shell in the main competition at last year’s San Sebastian Film Festival with her latest feature The Kings of the World (Los reyes del mundo).

Elena Trapé to Direct Coming Soon’s Series “Gwendolyne, Diario de Una Fan”

Elena Trapé is fan-girling

The Spanish filmmaker, whose character-driven ensemble pieces Blog and The Distances marked her as a talent to watch, is attached to direct Gwendolyne, Diario de Una Fan, one of two series being brought onto the market at Ventana Sur’s Spanish Screenings by Barcelona-based Coming Soon Films.

Elena Trape, The screenplay for Gwendolyne, Diario de Una Fan is by Marta Buisán, Jordi Casado and Miguel Ibánez Monroy.

Gwendolyne, Diario de Una Fan’s titular protagonist, now 30, had one of the times of her life – one of the only times of her life – when 15, she was chasing the Sexy Gods, her favorite boy band, around Barcelona, just as they dissolved. Now, however, they’re about to get together again; which she sees as a solution to all her life problems: Useless studies, a dead-end job; a d***head boyfriend, a flat share with her distant and conniving boss.

As her life plunges into life crisis, Gwendolyne thinks that everything will be solved if she gets back stage with the back-on-stage Sexy Gods. That, however, is a misconception.

“This is an absolutely necessary coming-of-age tale, with a protagonist whom we haven’t seen before,” commented Trapé.

“I’ve always been a big fan of scripted British TV,” she added, praising how it “moves between documentary and film, achieving a perfect balance  between veracity and cinematic aesthetics. I love how it risks with its cast, shoots on locations, the light, the hand-held camera, the narrative drive, and above all, how it gets us to identify with its characters, their pains, lives and emotions,” she added, citing Pure, I May Destroy You and Fleabag.

“‘Gwendolyne’ is a comedy of clear female leads, with a lot of music and in which sisterhood plays a key role,” added Coming Soon.

Trapé’s Blog won a Special Mention at San Sebastian Film Festival’s La Otra Mirada prize; The Distances swept Malaga’s Golden Biznaga for best picture as well as director and actress (Alexandra Jiménez) in 2018.

Produced by Coming Soon, Trapé’s next feature, Els encantats, with Laia Costa (Lullaby), shot this summer.

A BCN Showrunners alum, Buisán formed part of the production team on two series from Catalan public broadcaster TV3, El Gran Dictat and La Riera. A dramatist-actor-screenwriter, Casado wrote and directed theater plays Vivo and en-Cadena, and took part in collective creation a-Gig-a-Byte, staged at London’s Rose Theatre.

A graduate of Barcelona’s famed ESCAC film school, the alma mater of J.A. Bayona, Ibañez Monroy co-wrote TV3 series Cites (2016), and Trapé’s The Distances and Els Encantats, as well as Carlos Martín’s El año de la plaga and Laura Alvea’s La mujer dormida, now shooting for Coming Soon.

Figa Films Acquires International Sales Rights to Clara Linhart’s “Os Sapos”

Clara Linhart’s latest project is hoping to get global distribution…

Figa Films has acquired the international sales rights to Os Sapos (Frogs) by the Brazilian filmmaker.

Clara Linhart

Linhart’s previous film Domingo, co-directed with Fellipe Barbosa, premiered at the 75th Venice Film Festival in Venice Days.

The Brazilian production centers on a woman, in her late thirties, invited to an old friends’ get together at a country house. She arrives to find there is no get together and is left instead to spend her weekend with two couples in partial crisis.

In her statement about the film director Linhart says, ‘I want the spectators to recognize themselves in these characters or in the situations they experience. I want people to both laugh and cringe because they can relate. I want to use the camera as a microscope capable of visualizing looks, gestures, and whispers that denote desires, fears, and insecurities.”

Paula is played by Thalita Carauta, who put in an award-winning turn in Narcos director Fernando Coimbra’s searing feature debut A Wolf At The Door, a Horizontes Latinos winner at the San Sebastian Film Festival.

Her character carries the audience with her as what could have been an idyllic getaway thrusts demands on her to be an agony aunt, diffuse tension, thwart advances of friendship and more.

‘I am not interested in portraying women as victims and men as monsters, but in identifying complementary neuroses that are common to so many couples,’ says Linhardt.

These goals from the director are complimented by a screenplay from Renata Mizrahi.

FiGa and Linhardt will no doubt be encouraged by jury and audience wins at the pix-in-post strand of the 26th Festival Audiovisual do Mercosul. It’s a festival that has brought success previously, with her first feature, La Manuela, winning the best doc prize there in 2017.

Sandro Fiorin, co-founder of FiGa Films told Variety: “We have admired Clara’s work for a long time and it’s a privilege to collaborate with her and the team in Brazil. Her film, though comedic at moments, feels like a pressure chamber in an idyllic paradise – leaving us totally breathless.”

Produced by Linhardt and Fellipe Barbosa’s label Gamarosa Filmes, Os Sapos received support from Brazil’s main federal government production fund, the Fundo Setorial do Audiovisual. Additional co-production credits go to Canal Brasil and Telecine.

Laura Mora’s “The Kings of the World” Named Best Feature at Zurich Film Festival

Laura Mora is celebrating a golden moment…

The Colombian director’s drama The Kings of the World has won the Golden Eye for best feature film at the Zurich Film Festival.

Laura MoraThe award follows hot on the heels of the film’s triumph at the San Sebastian Film Festival exactly a week ago, where it world premiered and then won the Golden Shell for best film.

The drama follows five street kids from Medellin who set off on a dangerous trip into the Colombian hinterland, after one of them is granted the right to a piece of land taken from his family by paramilitaries, during the country’s 52-year conflict which displaced more than five million people.

The Kings of the World was produced by producer and director Cristina Gallego, whose credits include Birds of Passage and the Oscar-nominated The Embrace Of The Serpent.

The film also previously screened to professionals as part of the TIFF Industry Select line-up and heads to the Chicago Film Festival in October.

Oscar-winning Iranian director Asghar Farhadi headed up the Feature Film Competition jury, which also included Swiss director Petra Volpe, producer Daniel Dreifuss, Swedish producer Peter Gustafsson and U.K. director Clio Barnard.

“The movie was one of the first films we saw and it left us with unforgettable images and scenes,” read their jury statement.

The Kings of the World is meticulously crafted and brings us close to the young protagonists who fight for freedom and dignity. The lyrical film language infuses the harsh reality with a metaphysical dimension. It’s an important and powerful story about the marginalized in society.”

Trailer Released for Javier Bardem’s Workplace Comedy “The Good Boss”

Javier Bardem is a boss 

The first international trailer has been released for the 52-year-old Spanish Oscar-winning actor’s workplace comedy The Good Boss.

Javier Bardem

Produced by Reposado P.C. and The Mediapro Studio, the offbeat and ironic film is directed by Fernando León de Aranoa. It’s one of this year’s most highly anticipated titles set to premiere at the San Sebastián Film Festival, and was selected this week as one of three finalists for Spain’s International Feature Film Oscar submission.

Buzz around the film has been building since it was announced two years ago, and with overwhelmingly positive word of mouth spreading after several Spanish press screenings, the film is sure to make an impact in competition at the Basque festival.

The Good Boss takes place in and around the Blancos Básculas factory, where all things must be in balance at all times. After all, they manufacture scales of all shapes and sizes. There, the seemingly benevolent boss, Bardem’s Blanco, is preparing his workforce for an upcoming inspection by a group visiting local businesses to select one for a prestigious prize.

Tensions begin to mount, however, when recently fired employee Jose shows up with his two children and begins making demands for the reinstatement of his employment. When Blanco’s management team refuses, the employee begins a one man crusade to discredit Blanco and prevent him from winning the much-coveted award.

In the trailer, we see the genesis of the conflict between Blanco and a disgruntled former employee who makes camp just outside the factory’s gates, importantly, on public property. We are also introduced to Miralles, a long-time friend and employee of Blanco’s whose personal problems are negatively affecting his work performance, giving an idea of how far Blanco is willing to go to support those close to him, but also the limit of his patience.

Blanco’s wandering eyes and sometimes poor decision making are similarly on display, as he is introduced to an attractive young intern who joins the factory’s marketing department. His incredible capabilities in staying calm under pressure are also demonstrated, with one or two teases of what happens when that calm finally breaks.

 

The film will have its world premiere on September 21 at the San Sebastian Film Festival before its Spanish theatrical premiere on October 15, distributed by Tripictures.